Six months ago marked the 150th anniversary of the Washington County Historic Courthouse. It also marked the grand opening of the exhibit, Life as a Civil War Soldier: The First Minnesota and Co. B, which teaches visitors about the history of men and boys from the area who fought in Civil War battles, and honors the 100th anniversary of the Soldiers and Sailors Civil War Monument on courthouse grounds.
Located in the Vault Exhibit Room of the historic courthouse through January 5, 2018, this informative tribute to Civil War soldiers has had a positive impact on local visitors. “We have had many visitors share their family stories and heirlooms with us, [which] has been a wonderful learning experience for both visitors and our staff,” says Elise Gardner, senior office support for the parks division.
The exhibit includes many items of historical significance, including replica soldiers’ uniforms, battle maps and weapons. Visitors also can select a soldier and follow their journey through the war, eventually discovering whether they died in battle or how the war influenced them. According to Gardner, the First Minnesota Infantry Regiment played a fascinating and important part in the Civil War many Minnesotans are unaware of.
Washington County Historic Courthouse
Exhibit is free. Open Monday through Saturday; times and more information available online.