Campaign for Gibbs Farm

Gibbs Farm: Expanding Our Impact to Build a Brighter Future

Over the past 74 years, Gibbs Farm has become a catalyst for student success, creating educational experiences that bring effective, accurate, authentic, and inclusive history to life in the imaginations and hands of students. Utilizing participatory theater, call and response exercises, hands-on activities, make and take projects, and visual learning materials, Gibbs Farm’s programming helps instill in students a real understanding and connection to the community in which we all live. History also builds critical thinking skills and creates empathy for others whose lived experiences differ from theirs.

Gibbs Farm’s unique, quality programs have brought more than 20,500 students and educators to the site each year. However, it has reached its capacity as a seasonal facility. Looking ahead to the next 25 years, RCHS and Gibbs Farm have developed a plan to transform Gibbs Farm by constructing a new Education Building and Collections Preservation Facility, developing a new safe street crossing and removing accessibility barriers, and expanding programs and operating support to sustain the impact of this new project.

Increasing Our Capacity
A new 16,000 square foot Education and Program Building will allow Gibbs Farm to reach twice as many students each year by removing seasonal limitations. The building will also support a substantial after-school program, increase the site’s rental capacity dramatically, add safety and comfort features for guests, and support significant increases in general visitation.

 Protecting Our Story
A new 3,900 square foot Collections Preservation Facility will provide museum-quality, climate-controlled storage for RCHS’s artifact and photograph collections with space sufficient to meet community needs for the foreseeable future. Keeping these objects protected helps us preserve the history of Ramsey County.

Sustaining Our Growth
To ensure the legacy of our mission and impact, Gibbs Farm will develop new and enhanced programming and partnerships with Dakota Wicohaŋ, the Bell Museum, and other local organizations to help us engage with new audiences. An endowment will help keep Gibbs Farm affordable for all members of our community.

Looking to Our Future
Gibbs Farm and the Bell Museum have transformed the corner of Cleveland and Larpenteur into a cultural destination. To keep school groups safe, Gibbs Farm will build a plaza to facilitate safer street crossing. In addition, Gibbs Farm will improve its existing trails, buildings, signage, and restrooms to ensure the site is accessible and welcoming to visitors of all backgrounds and ages.

Together, these transformative improvements will increase earned revenue up to 250%, supporting innovation as well as the long-term sustainability of the Gibbs site.

With these exciting plans, RCHS has launched a $22.6 million capital campaign that will bring together a wide variety of funders, including the state of Minnesota, Ramsey County, local corporations and foundations, and our generous community of supporters. The portion to be raised from our donors totals $6 million, and we have raised $3.7 million of this goal so far.

To learn more, please contact Chad Roberts, President & CEO at 651-222-0701 or via email at

Transforming the Future

Gibbs Farm Helps Teachers Teach
Every program at Gibbs Farm addresses Minnesota education standards that are required topics in classrooms. History and Indigenous culture are two topics that many teachers self-identify as areas in which they require assistance. Gibbs Farm employs experts that teach these subjects exclusively and well.

Gibbs Farm is Effective
The programs at Gibbs Farm use a combination of the best learning tools available, including participatory theater, call and response language exercises, visual learning materials that mitigate language barriers, hands-on activities, and make and take projects, to bring history to life in the imaginations and hands of students.

Gibbs Farm is Unique
The history of Jane Gibbs and the Dakota people of Heyáta Othúŋwe (Cloud Man’s Village) covers agriculture, civics, and Dakota culture and how they intersect. How we teach it is unique in Minnesota.

Gibbs Farm Respects Culture
We work with Dakota people to tell the Dakota story, in fact, the Dakota program was developed by Dakota Elders and Culture Bearers 24 years ago and continues to be guided by Dakota advisors today.

RCHS Preserves Our Culture
RCHS is entrusted with preserving more than 4.5 million documents and artifacts from thousands of organizations and individuals. This effort includes creating a desperately-needed collections preservation facility to ensure our material culture is preserved and accessible.

Thank you to the following:

Gibbs Farm Transformation Task Force 2020-2023
Jo Driscoll
Roy Dorn
Karen Dosh
Mari Oyanagi Eggum
Joanne Englund
Tim Glines
Joan Higinbotham
Carl Kuhrmeyer
Marc Manderscheid

Campaign Supporters

$1 million+

Ramsey County

$500,000 – $999,999

John & Ruth Huss
National Endowment for the Humanities

$250,000 – $499,999

Charlton Dietz
Hardenbergh Foundation
Richard & Nancy Nicholson

$100,000 – $249,999

Audrey Anderson
F R Bigelow Foundation
James E. Johnson and Lucy Rosenberry Jones
The Nicholson Brothers Fund
The Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundation
Sandy Klas
Scrooby Foundation

$50,000 – $99,999

Jerry and Becky Woelfel
Jo Anne and Edward Driscoll
John and Marla Ordway
Mairs & Power, Inc.
Robert and Aimee Mairs
Todd and Martha Nicholson
Trillium Family Foundation

$10,000 – $49,999

Elizabeth Guthmann
John and Jill Hamburger
Harlan Boss Foundation for the Arts
Joan H. Higinbotham
Esther Kellogg
Elizabeth J. Keyes
Anne and Litton Field
Deborah and Andy Lee
Helen Mairs
Mary “Dusty” Mairs
Catherine and Ford Nicholson
David and Barbara Nicholson
Tom & Mari Oyanagi Eggum
Kathy Robbins and Cathy Croghan
Chad and Kristan Roberts
John and Annette Whaley
Richard and Lucy Wilhoit

Up to $9,999

Ann Aurelius
Karen and Charles Dosh
Charles Driscoll
Joanne A. Englund
Elmer L & Eleanor J Andersen Foundation
Timothy Glines and Barbara Davis
Jennifer Gross
Judy and Edward Kishel
Steve and Rose Lambros
Joseph and Nicole Lutz
Marc & Kathy Manderscheid
Peter Nguyen
George Stephenson
Joseph and Annette Twomey
Glenn and Deborah Wiessner
Lee Pao Xiong