Historical museum reveals contest answers, winner

Published 6:10 am Sunday, August 11, 2013

Column: Preserving the Past, by Pat Mulso

What a great week we had for the Freeborn County Fair. The Freeborn County Historical Museum had more than 1,450 visitors come through the museum and village during the fair.

We want to say thank you to the fair board for making it possible for fair attendees to visit the museum free during their fair visit.

Pat Mulso

Pat Mulso

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A special thank you to our 64 volunteers that made it possible for us to be open extended hours during the fair, from myself and the staff at at the museum.

Also we hope you visited our exhibit of items and photos in the Heritage Barn, and now I would like to reveal the answers to our contest along with the name of our winner. The items, one through 18 are: 1. golf club holder, 2. stovepipe damper, 3. rug stretcher, 4. eggbeater, 5. hot jar lifter, 6. ice cracker, 7. ice cream pack mold, 8. flint lighter, 9. metal pan scrubber, 10. ice cream scoop, 11. harness makers leather mold for bridle straps, 12. Kriss Kross single edge razor blade sharpener, 13. necktie presser, 14. nutmeg grater, 15. weaving needle, 16. Double Kay nutcracker, 17. thumb protector used during husking, 18. elbow brace used to keep babies from sucking their thumbs. Our winner is Elroy and Shannon Poplow from Albert Lea. They will receive a free 2014 museum membership and a copy of “Glimpses of Freeborn County.” Thank you to all participants.

We were delighted to have our three youngest grandchildren visit during fair week. My son Matt and his wife, Kris (from Montana), were here for Matt’s 20th class reunion (which just doesn’t seem possible) with their 11-month old daughter, Kepler. She enjoyed the animals the most at the fair and made frequent visit to see the goats and kittens and liked looking at all the dolls at the museum. Jeramy had his two children visiting from Ohio, Dylan and Morgan, and they enjoyed the big machinery, pig races and the demo derby.

This is the first time the boys and their children have all been together with us since my mother died in 2007, so we have had fun just hanging out and telling stories of times in the past. We need to remember that just spending time together can make the best memories. We have laughed and giggled and played games and the week went way to fast. Remember to take time to enjoy those you love the most, you never know what the future may hold, but no one can take away the memories you share.

We are officially using our new entrance to the museum located on the north side of our new addition, near the fairground arches. The new addition is almost complete. The treads for the stairs are on order, and we have a few other minor details to finish on the inside, and then we hope to get the old entrance glassed in before fall. The old entrance will no longer be used, as we have moved our reception and offices to the new addition.

We will continue to make the transition into the new addition and then rearrange the exhibits in the older sections of the museum as we make space for new items to be displayed.

There will be items to be purchased as money becomes available, such as blinds for the windows and some new display cases, etc. We will set the date for a grand opening as soon as we have completed our transition. We currently need to raise an additional $250,000 for the addition construction. Donations may be made directly to the FCHM Building Fund by sending or bringing a check to the museum, 1031 Bridge Ave., Albert Lea, MN 56007.

We hoped that you enjoyed all of our events in July – from Marion Ross’ ribbon-cutting reception to the play “The Visit” presented in our village, along with various other events. We now hope you will mark your calendar for our August events. We will host a four-hour defensive driving class at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday. You must register and the cost is $19. We have our Mystery Bus Tour this Thursday and then our annual Echoes from the Past, A Journey into History will take place Aug. 21 at Graceland Cemetery at 6:30 p.m. The cost is $5. We hope you will join us for a relaxing presentation and a journey into the past. The FCHM board of directors will be serving sandwiches at the Albert Lea Farmers Market from 4 to 6 p.m. Aug. 28 .

Save the date also for our Autumn in the Village which will be from noon to 4 p.m. Sept. 15. This event will feature many demonstrations as in the past, as well as some new demonstrations and exhibits.


Pat Mulso is the executive director of the Freeborn County Historical Museum in Albert Lea.