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News from the Stearns History Museum

Keep this page on your radar to see what’s fresh out of the vault, upcoming events, new program announcements, upcoming exhibits, historical tidbits, and more.

A Little History

A Little History is a monthly program for preschool-age children. They will make crafts, play games and discover historic stories. It takes place at 10 a.m. on the last Wednesday of the month. 2020 Topics Include: January 29 –  Russian Nesting Dolls February ...

History Maker Celebration 2020

April 30, 2020Join us in celebrating the Stearns County history makers with a live WWII USO-style variety show, including a themed dinner. When: 5:30 to 8:30 PM | April 30, 2020 Where: Gorecki Center, College of St. Benedict Why: This event benefits the Stearns History ...

Women in Agriculture

Gert Schwinghammer (1918-2002) Gertrude (Gert) Schwinghammer was the first woman inducted into the Minnesota Livestock Hall of Fame. When she received the honor on March 20, 1984, Schwinghammer said she hoped, “This might pave the way for other farm women.” For more ...

Women in Law Enforcement

Sybil Hollern (1910-1994) Sybil Hollern St. Cloud’s only female police officer for 28 years. She was employed by the St. Cloud Police Department from 1947 to 1975. A year after retirement from the police force, she became the first female and only senior citizen on the ...

Women in Medicine

Mary Stiles (1944 - ) Dr. Mary Stiles became the first female doctor on staff at the St. Cloud Hospital when she began a solo practice in Annandale, Minnesota, in 1975. Although she created a stir as the female doctor, she did not encounter a lot of negativity because ...

Women in Law

Janelle P. Kendall (1965-) Janelle P. Kendall became the first female Stearns County in 2003 when she defeated a 30-year male incumbent for the position. Overlooking downtown St. Cloud form her office on the fourth floor of the Administration Center, Kendall said, ...

Women in Philanthropy

The Women’s Fund (2003-) The Women’s Fund of the Central Minnesota Community Foundation is established to create and support programs that enhance the lives of all women and children, involving women as leaders and donors in the process. The Women’s Fund of the Central ...

Women in the Military

Mary Knevel (1911-2008) Mary Knevel became a United States Navy nurse and a reserve-active duty ensign in 1943. Knevel had the opportunity to board American, British, and Russian vessels but spent the greater part of her enlistment caring for soldiers in the Great Lakes

Women in Government

Tarryl Clark (1961-) Tarryl Clark became one of the new women in the Minnesota State Senate when she was elected District 15 Senator in December 2005. Based on her experience working with legislators as an advocate for working families and seniors, she quickly won the ...

Women in Business

Grace McDowell (1896 – 1989) was a woman ahead of her time, helping to shape the development of St. Cloud during the 1960s with wit and wisdom. McDowall served two terms on the St. Cloud City council and was its president for four years. She was not motivated by one or ...

Women in Journalism

Jane Grey Swisshelm (1815-1884) Jane Grey Swisshelm was a prominent national figure in the nineteenth century. Born in Pennsylvania in 1815, a daughter of Scotch-Irish Calvinists, Jane Grey Cannon was poor from birth. At age eight she taught lace making to the daughters

Women in Arts

Leslie Schumacher (1955-) Leslie Schumacher has positively influenced the St. Cloud arts community as Executive Director of the Central Minnesota Arts Board (CMAB). Her skills as a tough negotiator and perceptive artist have turned CMAB “into a public service ...