1917 - 1918 Exhibits Research

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2017 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Fund Source
Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund
Dakota County Historical Society
Recipient Type
Non-Profit Business/Entity
Start Date
September 2016
End Date
September 2017
Activity Type
Counties Affected
Project Overview

To hire a qualified historian to research Minnesota history during 1917-1918 in preparation for upcoming exhibits.

2017 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Other Funds Leveraged
Direct expenses
Administration costs
Number of full time equivalents funded
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Available upon request. Contact grants@mnhs.org

Measurable Outcome(s)

In our original application, we cited two different short-term goals and how we would measure the success of each. First we wanted to create a list of institutions that may have holdings related to World War I that identified some portion of Dakota County for our research. Next, our Exhibit Researcher (ER) was to travel to those locations to determine if there was anything in their collection useful to our research.

After identifying a list of organizations (Minnesota Historical Society / History Center, Immigration Library, etc.), our researcher called each location to speak with someone from their staff, or did an online search when available. We were successful in finding materials in the institutions with a more broad focus, rather than narrow focus (i.e. county). Our most successful visits from the list we created were to the Minnesota History Center and the Immigration Library. However, we still had found more useful materials in our own collection of microfilm that contained local newspapers. We believe we were successful, since the list did provide us with additional information and resources we did not have in our own possession.

Our next goal was an intermediate one that sought to have compiled all of the research into themes and categories. We undoubtedly were successful in this category due to our ER providing us with a User Guide to her research, as well as sorted files by categories with paper copies of what was found. The paper files are broken down by themes of "Agriculture / Farmers," "Not WWI" (Women's Suffrage, etc.), "1918 Flue Pandemic & Disease," Education / Training," Race," Peace Activism / Socialists," etc. By having these files, along with the User Guide, our next phase of creating the exhibit will be much simpler, while also providing a permanent collection that researchers can utilize.

Lastly, our long-term goal was to find content that was not already in our collection to preserve for the public. Again, we have been much more successful than our organization could have thought of when it came to this goal. The amount of detail in organizing the information found by our ER provides our Research Library with a wealth of new information that we anticipate being used excessively during the span of our exhibit and into the future. With each community having their own file, as well as general information during this time frame, we anticipate this being used for more than just World War I research. As in our original grant, the inforamtion can be used for at least the next 5-10 years on various research topics, but also fill a void in our permanent collection.

Source of Additional Funds

Available upon request. Contact grants@mnhs.org

Recipient Board Members
Tom Achartz (President), Sally Anderson (Vice President), Stephen Cook (Treasurer), Roberta Norris-Norvoll (Secretary), Marty Jo Bruyer, David Byrne, Robert Damon, Jim Huffman, Greg Oxley, Theresa Palmersheim, Leslie Greaves Radloff, Leah Stanek, Dale Weeks
Project Manager
First Name
Last Name
Organization Name
Dakota County Historical Society
Street Address
130 3rd Avenue North
South St. Paul
Zip Code
651-552-7548 x303
Administered By
Administered by

345 W. Kellogg Blvd.
St. Paul, MN 55155