The Hudson and St. Croix Valley area community is invited to join the Wisconsin Historical Society on Thursday, May 9, 2019, at The Phipps Center for the Arts in Hudson from 6:30-8 p.m. (doors open at 6 p.m.) to share suggestions for what aspects of local and regional history and culture could be included in a new modern, state-of-the-art history museum on Wisconsin's Capitol Square in Madison.

"The new state history museum project is about more than bricks and mortar and will connect the stories of Wisconsinites across all 72 counties and beyond," said Christian Overland, Ruth and Hartley Barker Director of the Wisconsin Historical Society. "We are encouraging residents from both Minnesota and Wisconsin to participate and to share their ideas for how the history and heritage of the St Croix Valley can be reflected because the Society values building relationships with all communities in order to integrate authentic perspectives in the new history museum."

The event will start with an introduction to the new museum project. Guests will hear from Overland and then participate in workshops that will help develop feedback and conversations on current exhibit design concepts, what makes their community unique and how a new state history museum can serve their community.

Prior to the program, guests are invited to enjoy an up-close view of five items from the Wisconsin Historical Society's world-renowned American history collection rarely shown in public. One of the needs for the new museum is to have a state of the art space with updated systems in which to show objects like these. The collection pieces that will be on display include: a shawl worn by Abraham Lincoln en route to Washington and through his presidency, James Wilkins' 1849 sketches of the Oregon Trail, a rock and note thrown through the window of Daisy Bates' home in 1957 by the Ku Klux Klan, a map from 1814 showing present-day Wisconsin/Minnesota when it was one territory and a sweater worn by Polish veterinarian, Tadeusz "Ted" Kowalczyk when he was a prisoner at the Nazis' Auschwitz concentration camp in Germany. The items will also be on display directly after the event.

The event is supported by local partner, the St. Croix Historical Society.

The Society is traveling the state and will be holding over 40 community listening sessions as well as 14 American Indian nation engagement sessions and listening sessions with students. Guests can pre-register by visiting wihist.org/yourvoice and then clicking on learn more under community events.

"As we hold these listening workshops, we have learned many community stories that have local significance and national impact and our communities want to experience their stories in a new history museum," Overland continued. "We also want to understand how we can better serve our audiences in their towns and cities because we believe that everyone should feel welcomed in this museum when they visit in person and participate digitally."

The Wisconsin Historical Society has been working towards building a new $120 million, 100,000-square-foot museum for more than 20 years. The new museum will more than double exhibition space and include state-of-the-art technology while providing learning, meeting and flexible spaces. The new museum will reach and connect people all across the state through distance learning technology and exciting, modern exhibits.

For more information on the Wisconsin Historical Society visit wisconsinhistory.org.

Wisconsin Historical Society

The Wisconsin Historical Society, founded in 1846, ranks as one of the largest, most active and most diversified state historical societies in the nation. As both a state agency and a private membership organization, its mission is to help people connect to the past by collecting, preserving and sharing stories. The Wisconsin Historical Society serves millions of people every year through a wide range of sites, programs and services.