Please Note: Due to COVID-19, the Lawshe Museum is open for research by appointment only. The exhibit spaces will reopen on July 8, 2020 during normal operating hours. The museum will operate at a reduced capacity and face coverings are required for entry.
Explore ever-changing exhibits and our permanent collection of artifacts, or dive into our historical records research center. We have educational programs for people of any age interested in local history. The Lawshe Museum and the office for the Dakota County Historical Society are located in downtown South St. Paul. Admission is FREE. We are always grateful for donations, large and small.
We have extensive resources to help you with your genealogy, local city and township histories, and land research. Our collection includes:
- Books, magazines, and documents on Minnesota, Dakota County, and local history.
- Microfilm of newspapers dating back to the 1850s
- Federal and State census data from 1849 to 1940
- Cemetery and obituary records
- Naturalization records for County citizens
- Catholic church records
- Paper files on city and township history
- Plat maps showing ownership from 1879 to the present
- Information regarding sites on the National Register of Historic Places
- Over 300 oral history tapes
- Over 10,000 historical photographs
- Telephone books and city directories
- Records from Grand Army of the Republic Posts 47 and 48
- Henry Sibley's papers and a portion of Ignatius Donnelly's papers
- 1918 alien registration forms
Our research staff and volunteers are available to assist you! Research assistance is FREE to our members. A donation of at least $15 per half hour is suggested for non-members.