If you're looking for an educational, engaging, and affordable attraction in Rochester, the History Center has you covered! Our exhibits explore the extraordinary and everyday stories of Olmsted County and Rochester and the people who live here.
On March 14, 2013, same-sex marriage was made legal in Minnesota. 10 years later, this exhibit examines the laws, activism, and legal cases that culminated in marriage equality for all people in Minnesota, as well as sharing the perspectives of Olmsted County's LGBTQ+ community.
This exhibit explores society’s views of death, mourning, and cemetery spaces throughout history through the lens of the 160th Anniversary of Oakwood Cemetery in Rochester, Minnesota. From 1863 to 2023, Olmsted County residents have mourned and honored the people they've lost.
What makes a community? Learn how the African-American community in Rochester developed in the 1960s and 1970s. See how companies, social groups, churches, and sports helped create a community.
On July 14th, 1953, KROC-TV (now known as KTTC) went on the air with initial test patterns. This started a tradition of bringing the news to the people of Rochester and Southeastern Minnesota.
This exhibit was curated by the marketing team at KTTC. Learn more on their website: KTTC at 70 Years
Discover the stories of the members of the Mayo family and how their lives and achievements affected Rochester, Minnesota.
The history of Olmsted County spans thousands of years. Travel through this history with the stories and artifacts in the Olmsted County Exhibit. Journey from the prehistoric period, with its cephalopods and woolly mammoths, to the present, learning about the Native peoples, early European settlers, and surveying. The Olmsted County Exhibit tells the story of our community’s land and people.
In the aftermath of Pearl Harbor, America joined the Allies in World War II to combat Germany, Japan, and Italy. Countless men either enlisted or were drafted into the armed forces. The exhibit features the stories of men and women from Olmsted County who served their country.
Learn how Olmsted County enticed settlers and what benefits the county offered. The exhibit includes a hands-on section where you can handle items early settlers brought with them when moving to Minnesota. Along with Olmsted County, learn about the numerous treaties that shaped the state of Minnesota.
The building blocks for democracy can be linked to our townships in Olmsted County. Discover the unique story of both Kalmar and Byron along with how the railroad formed both the township and city.
The History Center schedules a range of traveling exhibits. Each one can be exhibited from several weeks to several months at a time. Check back to see any upcoming traveling exhibits.