Partner: Minnesota Indian Affairs Council
American Indian undergraduate students from across Minnesota participated in this unique summer educational experience. The students selected for this intensive 17-day residential program attended onsite presentations throughout Minnesota and experienced hands-on learning about the museum and archaeology fields and other historical and cultural preservation organizations.
This project is a continuation of Statewide Lake study that revealed the obiquitous presence of endrocrine active compounds (EACs) in many MN Lakes. The initial project findings suggested two potential knowledge gaps in our understanding of EACs and their effects in lake environments. First, the sources of EACs and their entrance points into lakes need to be better defined than was possible in our previous statewide lake study.
This project will promulgate a nitrate water quality standard to address aquatic life toxicity, and gather information needed to support the development of total nitrogen (N) loading reduction strategies for Minnesota’s waters and also address Minnesota’s contribution to marine water hypoxia. Project will also develop a framework for a watershed nitrogen planning aid that can be used to optimize selection of Best Management Practice (BMP) systems for reducing nitrogen.
This project will develop a watershed approach plan, including impaired waters allocations, for the Mustinka Watershed, located at the headwaters of the Red River of the North, in western Minnesota, lying partly in Grant, Stevens, Ottertail, Big Stone, and Traverse counties. The watershed approach plan will set water quality goals for the watershed, recommend allocations for achieving total maximum daily loads where waters do not meet state standards and are listed as impaired.
This project will complete a comprehensive and sustainable Major Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategies report for the Chippewa River, its tributary streams, and the many lakes in the Chippewa River watershed that is understandable and adoptable by local units of government and residents.
The goal of this project is to develop a core team of wastewater professionals and academics engaged in understanding and solving wastewater-related problems in Minnesota, with national relevance. The team will promote the use of new technology, designs and practices to address existing and emerging wastewater treatement challenges, including the treatement of wastewater for reuse and the emergence of new and unregulated contaminants.
Cornerstone Academy, the preservation education partnership of the Preservation Alliance and MNHS, launched in 2014. The statewide preservation education program has developed a training series for homeowners, community members, and professionals in fields that frequently interact with historic buildings and districts. Last year, hundreds of property owners across the state participated in more than 40 workshops. Courses included Understanding Historic Tax Credits, Handyman Special, Repairing Old Windows, and Why Old is Green: Sustainability in Older Homes.
This project will improve our understanding of the sources of sediment (turbidity), and the processes which deliver sediment to river channels. This project will address a suite of emerging questions regarding contributions and causes of non-field sediment, thereby providing watershed managers with a better understanding of how to manage these sediment sources.
MNHS continues its focus on preserving and making accessible the newspapers published in the state. Last year, the staff concentrated on acquiring digital content from publishers and building the access hub, Minnesota Newspapers Online (MNO). Work on both of these activities will continue.
Through this program, partners are extending the reach of National History Day in Minnesota. MNHS professional staff members coordinate school services with an emphasis on support for students from diverse backgrounds. Higher education partnerships help build college readiness skills for middle and high school students and strengthen the mentoring skills of Minnesota college students.
MNHS exhibitions are supported by diverse programming that complements the content of the exhibitions. These additional programs augment and promote the rich stories of Minnesota's history. In FY16, programs included lectures, musical performances, hands-on family activities, and other events. In particular, three exhibitions
Historic Fort Snelling is an MNHS historic site targeted for revitalization. This revitalization is one of MNHS's current strategic priorities. The Historic Fort Snelling revitalization project completed a master plan in June 2015. The predesign phase kicked off in September 2015 and continues through FY16. The project manager position, which coordinates various MNHS educational programs and building activities, was partially supported with Legacy funds.
Historic Fort Snelling is an MNHS historic site and the state's first National Historic Landmark. A major project at the site prioritizes the adaptive reuse of two historic buildings concentrating on opportunities for public use, education, engagement and reflection. This project supports an MNHS strategic priority and speaks to the mission by returning historic facilities to public use while fostering new dialogues. A master plan was done in 2015, and predesign was completed in June 2016.
The award-winning History Live! program served more than 5,500 students in FY15, bringing the total number of students served since the program launched in FY11 to nearly 29,000. For the first quarter of FY16, the History Live! program updated its business plan with a goal to increase overall revenue and serve more students. It provided 14 programs serving 421 students through Oct. 31, 2015. In addition, the program partnered with the Jewish Community Relations Council to launch a new History Live! lesson that integrates students' use of handheld technology with the live program.
The Diversity Committee guides MNHS in relation to its strategic priority for diversity and inclusivity. The team meets regularly to discuss current offerings, interactions with various diverse communities and provides services for MNHS to increase cultural competency of staff. The committee activities have emphasized training and development of staff, choosing the Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI) as an assessment tool to provide a benchmark of the current state of intercultural competency with the plan of reassessing at a later date to gauge improvements.
LSA is a statewide project that builds on the achievements realized during the first five years of Legacy funding. The LSA is a strategic document and a resource for the work of statewide history communities over the next four years. Through a collaborative statewide process, the LSA has identified four goals and four strategic priorities that ultimately will be measured and sustained. Legacy Vision
We are all deeply connected to each other when we are engaged in, enriched by, and excited about Minnesota's history and cultural heritage.
MNHS and regional public libraries across Minnesota are combining resources to educate, entertain, and build community among library patrons in the state. Libraries and MNHS are bringing a range of programs and events to local libraries that document and preserve community stories for future generations, educate people of all ages about the history of Minnesota and its people, and make high quality history programming accessible to
More than 60 programs were presented in dozens
of communities around the state, including:
The Minnesota Historical Society is deeply engaged in cultivating meaningful relationships with adult audiences as lifelong learners, members, donors, volunteers, and supporters. In FY16, MNHS continued to build the organization's capacity for using skilled volunteers through staff trainings, creating new programs, and a thorough evaluation of programs targeted at adult audiences. New initiatives: Fifty-eight new skilled volunteer positions were added, contributing 4,700 volunteer hours.
The Center for Changing Landscapes was directed by the Minnesota State Legislature to create a long-range framework for an integrated statewide parks and trails system that provides information on the natural resource-based recreational opportunities available throughout the state. The detailed framework must include an inventory of existing regionally and statewide significant parks and trails, respond to recreational trends and demographic changes, and identify underserved areas, overused facilities, and gaps in the current parks and trails system (Minn. Gen. Laws 64.8 § 6).
The goal of this project is to develop a Watershed Restoration and Protection Plan (WRAPS) to be used at the local level. It will increase the number of citizens participating in education and outreach events; foster information and idea exchange around watershed issues through relationships and social networks; involve community members in crafting civic engagement activities/plans in which they feel ownership and desire to implement; and promote awareness, concern, and watershed stewardship to community organizations/institutions.
The Minnesota Main Street program is a proven, comprehensive strategy that helps communities create new jobs and businesses while revitalizing buildings and preserving their historic downtowns. MNHS's Heritage Preservation department works with the partners
listed above to implement Minnesota Main Street,
which provides the tools, training, information, and networking that communities need to revitalize their business districts.
There are currently seven Minnesota Main Street designated communities: Faribault, New Ulm, Owatonna, Red Wing, Shakopee, Willmar, and Winona.
The Humanities Center used a portion of the Legacy funding for program planning and management. This support includes work such as exploratory and planning meetings for new initiatives and program management of all our Legacy work.
The MNHS Indian Advisory Committee (IAC) is made up of tribally appointed representatives of the 11 Minnesota tribes, as well as representatives of key groups, such as educators. IAC advises on planning, developing, and evaluating MNHS activities and initiatives including exhibitions, publications, public programs, and curatorial policy as they relate to the research, collection, preservation, and interpretation of Minnesota and American Indian history in Minnesota.
This groundbreaking project is creating a new model for school field trips, using mobile and web technologies to capitalize on the natural behaviors and learning styles of today's students. Serving approximately 7,000 students annually, Play the Past demonstrates how museums can use technology to create self-directed, personalized, responsive field trip experiences that deepen students' connection to history while honing their critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
Certain stretches of the Pomme de Terre River have been identified as impaired. This project will quantify the reductions in pollutant loading that would be necessary to bring water quality in the impaired stretches to an acceptable level. It will also identify strategies that would improve water quality in these impaired stretches. Some funds will support public input activities into the Pomme de Terre River watershed management plan.
The Minnesota Historical Society continues to build a culture of evaluation. An evaluation coordinator provides technical assistance and support to staff who evaluate ACHF projects and programs. An institutional Evaluation Action Team, along with consultation from Wilder Research, helps provide strategy and direction for evaluation capacity-building efforts. Interns from the Minnesota Evaluation Studies Institute at the University of Minnesota also support evaluation efforts that may include logic model design, evaluation planning, instrument design and data analysis and reporting.
MNHS continues to build a culture of evaluation. An evaluation manager leads institutional evaluation capacity building, as well as provides technical assistance and support to staff who evaluate ACHF projects and programs. An evaluation associate in the Education and Lifelong Learning Division facilitates evaluation efforts specifically in K-12 education and public programs. Three interns and numerous volunteers continue to support evaluation work.
MNHS staff created communication strategies and promotional materials for Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund (ACHF) history projects, programs, and grants, including media kits for grant recipients. Increasing public awareness of ACHF investments will ensure that students, teachers, and the general public will use and benefit from them.
Since completion of the Ramsey Redevelopment Project in 2011, the Alexander Ramsey House has been operating under a new model, but without a new business and marketing plan. This project allowed the Historic Sites division to hire a consultant to lead the site staff and MNHS technical advisers through a business planning process. Project objectives were to articulate goals and an operational plan for the site, identify target markets for the site and ensure the site would continue to meet institutional mission and financial goals.
The purpose of this project is to improve understanding of primary productivity in the Red River and the diversity and population structure of the algal communities occurring along the river system. This will be accomplished through taxonomic identification of periphyton and phytoplankton assemblages necessary for characterizing responses to nutrient gradients along the Red River of the North.
International Water Institute (IWI) staff will monitor 24 sites in the Bois de Sioux, Mustinka (2 sites), Buffalo (8 sites), Red Lake (4 sites), Sandhill (3 sites), Thief (2 sites), and Tamarac River (3 sites) Watersheds intensively over a 2 year period in an attempt to collect 25 samples per year at each site. If conditions allow for the collection of all planned samples, 1200 stream samples will be collected over the time period. Monitoring will include field measurements, observations, and at least three photographs during each site visit.
MN Legislative Clean Water Fund funding to engage citizens in local watershed monitoring, work with regional partners to promote understanding and protection of watersheds, and organize and facilitate gathering of scientific data all for the benefit of water quality in the Red River Basin.
MNHS and the Minnesota State Fair Foundation are increasing awareness and knowledge of Minnesota history by providing quality programming for visitors to the Great Minnesota Get-Together. In 2015, the partners added new visual and written content for the Minnesota State Fair History Walking Tour brochure. Audio and visual content was available with the smartphone tour component, and staff presented audio/visual content via social media throughout the fair. Some 40,000 brochures were distributed throughout the fairgrounds during the run of the fair.
The Statewide Survey of Historical and Archaeological Sites focuses on tangible aspects of Minnesota's cultural heritage including historic places, archaeological sites, places with spiritual and traditional importance, and cultural landscapes. The survey focuses on the identification and evaluation of these places in order to improve their management and enhance their interpretation.