© 2018 by Steele County Historical Society, 1700 Austin Road, Owatonna, MN.  507/451-1420 Proudly created with Wix.com


Over Here, Over There: The Great War

The Great War sprang upon Minnesota at a time of great political and social upheaval. It brought with it resolution to some problems, leaving uncertainty and new issues in its wake. Visit the Steele County History Center and read first-hand accounts by Steele County residents, experience warfare through sites, sounds and smells, sing along with WWI songs, and more! Interactives for ages 4 through 94! 

Toys & Play, 1970 to Today

Kids know toys are fun. But they are more than just simple playthings. As facilitators of play toys fill a significant role in children’s mental and physical development. They promote cognitive stimulation, physical exercise, and encourage imagination. From early childhood throughout adulthood, toys impact our decision making, peer interaction and stimulate our creativity.


The Steele County Historical Society’s exhibit, Toys & Play, 1970 to Today, will allow your kids to see and experience what you played with as a child. The exhibit covers childhood memories, how we learn from play, the history of marketing to children, and figuring out what exactly toys tell us about the world we live in. This exhibit is packed full of educational tidbits and there’s plenty to play with, too!.

Six Decades of Wedding Gowns

The Dunnell House will features six decades of wedding dresses. Twelve gowns dating from 1888 to 1948 display the various styles, materials and colors selected by brides for their walks down Steele County aisles. While white became a dominant color following Queen Victoria’s wedding in 1840, these brides often chose cream, tan, green, and even black.  Included are some familiar local names as Carrie Josten (Mrs. Otto), Mary Ressler (Mrs. Joseph), Tina Nelson (Mrs. Nels), Silvia Panzer (Mrs. Ervin), Irma Dinse (Mrs. Ewald), and Joyce Pribyl (Mrs. Silvin) among others

Food Won the War