Open House This Saturday!

Please join us Saturday, December 3rd from Noon – 4 at the Pope County Museum for our Holiday Open House.

At 1:00, Executive Director of the Maplewood Area Historical Society and Minnesota historian of 19th century agriculture, T.J. Malaskee, will explore the early holiday traditions of Minnesota’s Euro-American settlers that laid the foundation for the festive season of today. From French-Canadian ‘Kissing Day,” to Yankee-American Thanksgivings, and Northern European Christmas customs, enjoy some tales of old as celebrated by our ancestors!

At 2:00, we will have musical entertainment.

At 3:00 there will be drawings for door prizes. (There is no silent auction this year.) Everyone who attends will receive a slip for the prizes, if you are a member (or become a member) you receive an additional slip, if you made a donation in 2022 (including at the event) you receive another slip. You can place your name in the box for the prize(s) of your choice.

Of course, there will be treats and fellowship all day.

If you haven’t been to the museum since the start of the pandemic, you will see many changes and updates – including our new knitting exhibit.

If you are a knitter, crocheter, spinner, weaver, or other fiber artist, our next Knit Night at the Museum is December 15th.

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Collection Highlight – Starbuck American Legion Auxiliary Charter

A new item in our collection – the charter certificate for the Starbuck American Legion Auxiliary, Magnus Grondahl post 325.
The charter was signed May 22, 1922.

The charter membership roll is listed on the second page. The names include:
Hazel Gulbranson, Margaret O. Torgerson, Mildred Newlin, Mrs. S. G. Anderson, Magna Peterson, Bertha Nordstrom, Mabel O. Johnson, Mrs. T. C. Thompson, Olivia T. Peterson, Mrs. John Kleven, Mrs. Ole J. Kleven, Mrs. Ole Torgerson, Mrs. Alfred Nordstrom, Mrs. W. R. Case, Mrs. A. O. Smedstad, Ruth Svenning, Mrs. Elmer Erickson, Mrs. Emil Steen, Mrs. H. B. Stadsvold, Louise Brandby, Inga Asklakson, Jessie Barsness, Mrs. Victor Gorder, Mrs. John Ingvarson, Julia Johnson, Mrs. Oscar Wesen, Mrs. Ole Troy, Minnie Kleven, Agnes Dyrstad, Florence Erickson, Mrs. A Scheutz, Nettie Larson, Mrs. Bingham, Mrs. Ove Johnson, Mrs. John Lynch, Mrs. N. Forde, Mrs. Victor Runquist, Mrs. Victor Larson, Mrs. Jens Olson, Mrs. Leonard Peterson, Mrs. Roy Olson, Mrs. Martin Overstad, Mrs. Henry Hanson, Mrs. Albert Opdahl, Lorrane Smedstad, Mrs. C. R. Christenson, Mable Thompson, Mrs. Anton Ness, Caroline Grondahl, Anna Grondahl, and Janette Ingvarson.

We are grateful to the Starbuck American Legion Auxiliary for this gift.

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Aquatennial Award Recipients

I am working on a list of every person who has received the Aquatennial Volunteer award at Waterama. The recipients were not always listed in the newspaper. If you know who received the award for my missing years, please let me know!

Thank you!

YearAdmiralAquatennial Award
2010Tod StensrudRon Erno
2011Kari Nelson
2012Terri Richards
2013Todd RothMary Beth Schlueter
2014Jodi McGintyTerri Richards
2015Ted HillPat Douvier
2016Becky Evertz
2017Kyle NestorSharon Friedrichs
2018Teresa JergensonDiane Rust
2019Jeff PanitzkeJenna & Jeremy Myrom
2021Dane AnkenyJim & Karna Palmer
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Final Run of the Starbuck Times

This morning, we paid a visit to Quinco Press in Lowry. The company was started as a partnership between the newspapers in Elbow Lake, Benson, Morris, Wheaton, and Glenwood and has grown and expanded through the years and now prints about 35 west central Minnesota weekly newspapers and a few monthly editions as well from their presses in Lowry.

While it would be worthwhile to talk about Quinco and their importance to the area any day, today was a milestone day.

Today was the last printing of the Starbuck Times. The Times is the longest running newspaper in Pope County. The first issue was printed in December of 1898. We have a copy of that first issue on microfilm. The editor was understandably proud of his new paper and declared that it would be published until the crack of doom.

But as of next week, it will be combined with the Pope County Tribune.

The printing process today is very different from the days of hand set type. The computer files come to Quinco electronically and the full sheet printing plates are printed in-house. It takes about a half an hour to print the plates and install them into the press. The front / back page are printed in color, so there are four plates for that sheet. Once the presses start running, the Times takes only about 10 minutes to print.

Then the papers are taken into the next room where the inserts are stuffed by hand and mailing addresses are stamped in the corner. They are slipped into bags for the post office or bundled to be dropped off at stores.

The museum was given the last issue off the presses and a copy of the printing plate for the front/back page to add to our collection.

We are grateful to the team at Quinco and Tim Douglass of the Pope County Press, Inc. for letting us tag along today.

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Farm Presentation Videos Available

For anyone who missed the recent agriculture presentations, or would like to see them again, we have recorded the events.

To see the Vold Family presentation on the history of Dairy Farming from July 6, 2021, Click Here.

To see Jerry Wright’s presentation on the history of Irrigation in Pope County & Bonanza Valley from August 12, 2021, Click Here.

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Jerry Wright Next in Ag Lecture Series: Irrigation in Pope County

Make plans to join us on Thursday, August 12 at 6:30 pm for a presentation on the history of irrigation in the area by Jerry Wright. Wright is a retired associate professor & Extension  Engineer at the University of Minnesota. He has been involved in irrigation education in the area since 1976.

The use of irrigation has changed the way we use farmland here in Pope County and Bonanza Valley. Irrigation has not only increased crop yields, it has impacted the types of crops grown and the chemicals we use. Irrigation has changed our local economy significantly.

This presentation, the second in our ag lecture series, will be held in our new agricultural exhibit center, “The Shed,” located on the grounds of the Pope County Museum.

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Agriculture Highlight – Breaking Plow

In 1876, Swedish immigrants John and Sarah Anderson purchased a sod busting plow when they moved to land they bought in Barsness Township, Pope County. They used the thick sod to build their first home on the prairie. and to prepare the ground for planting wheat.

Grasshoppers consumed their entire crop in 1877 and 1878, but they persevered and had a fine crop in 1879.

In 1879, the nearest good market to the Anderson Farm was in Hancock, nineteen miles away. Hancock had a stop on the Great Northern Railroad, and could ship their wheat directly into St. Paul.  John started at daylight with his wagon and ox team and headed to Hancock. After unloading the wheat, resting the oxen and eating his packed lunch, he headed home where Sara had another load bagged and tied for the next day’s trip.

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Agriculture Highlight – Ox Yoke

This ox yoke was used by Albert Nelson on his homestead in Barsness Township in the 1860s.

When Albert first arrived in Pope County, St. Cloud was the closest market to sell his produce and purchase supplies. He walked or used his oxen, Jim and Charley, to haul his produce the 70 miles to St. Cloud.

The ox yoke is used to harness the strength of the oxen. The beam was carved and rounded to fit the animals’ necks with rounded bows that passed under the necks of the oxen. The oxen pushed the beam with the top of their necks and the bows with their upper shoulders.

Oxen travel about 2 miles per hour and only about 15 miles a day with frequent rest breaks. A person can walk 3-4 miles an hour and walk farther each day than an ox. Albert sometimes walked to St. Cloud with out oxen and carried the supplies on his back for a faster trip.

The ox yoke is part of our new Agriculture Exhibit in “The Shed” at the Pope County Museum. Stop in and check it out!

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We Are Open!

At long last, the Pope County Museum is now open to the public for our regular hours: Tuesday-Saturday 10-5.

During the shutdown, we took the opportunity to create a “Pope County Agriculture” exhibit in The Shed and to redesign exhibits in the main building.

Come on in and see what’s “New” at the Pope County Museum!

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Workshop Next Week

Cemetery Workshop    MVIMG_20190729_101234Saturday, August 8, 2020  9:30 – 4:00

Led by Northern Bedrock Historic Preservation Corps

Hosted by East Zion Lutheran Church, 28745 Cty Rd 10, Starbuck, Minnesota

Sponsored by the Pope County Historical Society with support from the Gladys Ness Brang Foundation.

This one day workshop on Cemetery Preservation will cover five important steps to long term care of cemetery monuments:  Cleaning, Probing for hidden stones, Edging, Resetting large & small stones, Documenting your work.

Registration fee of $25 includes lunch and a bucket of tools to take home. All workshop participants must wear garden/work gloves and cloth mask.

For more information and to register for the workshop call or email the Pope County Museum:   320-634-3293


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