Now, more than ever history is in the spotlight. People are questioning what they have been taught and seeking a better understanding of what they have experienced. Does that change our history? No, but it does push us to look at things from many different perspectives. Throughout 2021 we have worked to do just that. We have highlighted lesser told stories in a variety of ways including:
  • sharing stories of women in our community such as Dr. Mary Parker Hopkins who was the first female Health Officer for the Village of White Bear in 1910-11;
  • presenting the era of the suffrage amendment and its impact on our community;
  • exploring newly available resources on the Sophie Wirth Camp, the first Jewish Camp in Minnesota, which was located at White Bear Beach;
  • increasing our understanding of our local Native American history;
  • analyzing data from the Mapping Prejudice project and the role racial covenants played in shaping our area, and
  • celebrating the centennial of the incorporation of Birchwood Village.
White Bear Town Hall
Fillebrown House

We have said it many times throughout the past year or so – we are living through a very historic time – and we need to capture this moment! While this is certainly more apparent during recent times, it is something the White Bear Lake Area Historical Society has worked to accomplish on a regular basis over the past 51 years. What does this mean and how do we do that? Click here to see our many ongoing activities and initiatives.

Photo of Downtown White Bear Lake from mid 20th Century
Black and White Photo of White Bear Lake from mid-20th Century

Whether we are digitizing and transcribing an oral history from Dorothy Magnuson Haas sharing how she watched the Church of Christ, Scientist on Clark Avenue be remodeled in the 1940s, or compiling the origination of street and park names from resources such as blue prints from streetcar archives to share in our virtual programs, or investigating the lawsuit that caused the removal of the great burial mound along Lake Avenue in 1889, we are gathering, preserving and sharing our collective story in order to connect our community to its past.

Volunteers at Marketfest

All of this happens with a small team of dedicated staff and volunteers. At this time, I ask for your continued support of these efforts with a year-end contribution. The White Bear Lake Area Historical Society is a 501c3 non-profit. All donations are tax-deductible to the full extent of the law. Please consult your tax advisor for details.

In gratitude,

Sara Markoe Hanson
Executive Director