Ramsey County History – Fall 2014: “The RCHS Archives and Collections Since 1964”

Mollie Spillman

The RCHS Archives and Collections Since 1964
Author: Mollie Spillman

Collections form the foundation of Ramsey County Historical Society’s (RCHS) history and programs. When RCHS was organized in 1949 by Ethel Hall Stewart and others, it first acquired the Gibbs Farm Museum, which opened in 1954, and began to collect appropriate artifacts to display in the old Gibbs farmhouse, which itself is the first and largest artifact in the society’s permanent collection. Over the years, the collection has grown more varied as more objects, books, photographs, and a wide variety of documents, diaries, and government records have been added to the collections. This article provides a summary overview of the collections process, where paper and three-dimensional objects have been housed over the years, and some of the more notable collections that RCHS preserves. The largest archival collection is the St. Paul Building Permits with more than 347,000 items. The article concludes with a brief account of the construction of the RCHS Research Center in Landmark Center in 2009–2010.
PDF of Spillman article