Contact Us at (651) 439-5956
facebook wchstwitter wchs
wchs news

Join us in a Great Adventure!

We would like to share some exciting news with you. The Washington County Historical Society has set out on a monumental adventure to preserve our community's place in history. We have an opportunity to dream the dream by expanding our mission statement to serve the greater community with a new Washington County Heritage Center.

The Heritage Center will be an exciting place to come visit, learn and discover our heritage through many creative avenues of visual, technical, interactive and educational means. Not only will we be able to house important items from our own local history, but we will be able to bring to you traveling exhibits from important museums all over the country.

Please take a moment to review the link below, make a pledge and become a part of history with us!





looking for adventure

wchs news

Renew Your Membership for 2014

It is time to renew your membership to the Washington County Historical Society. Your membership is very important to the organization and we hope you will consider upgrading your membership for 2014. Please fill out the 2014 Membership Form and send it to: WCHS Memberships, PO Box 167, Stillwater, Minnesota 55082.



wchs news

Internship and Scholarship Information



wchs news

Telling the story - 2014 Annual Meeting

The Washington County Historical Society is excited to announce that Ret. Air Force Colonel Thomas Simonet will be the featured speaker at the Washington County Historical Society Annual meeting on Thursday March 27, 2014 at the Water Street Inn in Stillwater.

Col. Simonet was born in Stillwater and enlisted in the Air Force in 1972. After being released from active service he joined the Minnesota Air National Guard, 133rd Airlift Wing, in St. Paul, Minnesota. He has recently retired after serving more than 36 years in the Air Force.

Among the many awards and decorations Colonel Simonet has received includes the Bronze Star, Legion of Merit, the Minnesota Distinguished Service Medal, Minnesota Medal of Merit and the Minnesota commendation Medal.

He will be speaking on the importance of the preservation of our history. With the Washington County Historical Society celebrating its 80th year and he being the Treasurer of the Society, Col. Simonet will pick out unique artifacts from the Society’s collection that tell the story of Washington County. Tangible evidence of our past for future generations to study and learn from.

The event is open to the public and the cost is $25 for WCHS members and $35 for nonmembers.

The evening will begin at 5:30 with a social hour, dinner at 6:30 and the business

meeting will be at 7:30. Col. Simonet’s program will begin around 8pm.

Reservations are required. To make reservations or for more information about the event please call 651-439-5956.


2014 Annual Meeting

featured book

A History of Washington County: Gateway to Minnesota History

The new Washington County history book, written by Robert Goodman, the first in over 30 years, brings county history up-to-date, about equal attention to pioneer and more contemporary life, and explaining the county's unique role as the gateway to Minnesota history. This book is arranged by generations, starting with the pre-settlement period and continuing on through the suburbanization of the present day. The book also includes the local histories of 33 Washington County communities.The 280 page book is fully indexed and nicely illustrated. $25

Buy this book! »
Visit the WCHS store »

wchs news

Warden's House Museum & Hay Lake School House
closed for the season but still accepting Group Tours

Call 651-439-5956 for more information.

Historic Site Manager Wanted

The Washington County Historical Society has part-time opening for historic site manager for the Hay Lake School Complex in Scandia.

The Hay Lake School Museum Complex is made up of the 1896 brick Hay Lake School and the Johannes Erickson Log House. The school was once the rural school district #2 and closed as an active school in 1963. The Washington County Historical Society started operating it as a rural school museum in 1974 and then purchased the school from the Forest Lake School district in 1978. The Erickson Log House was constructed in 1868 and is featured as a Swedish immigrant home. Both properties are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The complex is open from May through October, Friday through Sunday 1-4 PM, with additional days depending on tours and scheduled events. The position also calls for scheduling tours with local and regional groups and successfully organizing and implementing seasonal events such as Hay Lake Day and the Hay Lake Beer Tasting.

The position is seasonal, part-time with approximately 20-25 hours per week. The application deadline is March 31, 2014. For more information please write to the Washington County Historical Society, Site Manager Position, PO Box 167, Stillwater, MN 55082-0167, email: or call 651/439-5956. To apply send a cover letter, resume and a list of references to the above address, previous historic site experience is preferable.

wchs news

Beer Tasting at Hay Lake School!

Check out this video from the WCHS Beer Tasting at Hay Lake in June!




Support the Washington County Historical Society by Shopping Online

The Washington County Historical Society is excited to announce it’s partnership with market america, the world’s largest online shopping destination!

Market America features over 50 million products and services! GET PAID TO SHOP while you support the Washington County Historical Society.

It’s FREE and EASY to use! Follow these simple steps and you’ll be on your way:

  • Register as a preferred customer at by clicking the "sign up now" button.
  • Sign in each time you shop
  • Get 2-35% cash back

With every purchase you make, a percentage of your total shopping order will be donated to the Washington County Historical Society. Help support your local historical society by shopping online!

Shop at stores like these:

Click on the link below to get started.

More: Market America >>>

WCHS Mission Statement

Washington County Historical Society collects, preserves, and disseminates the history of the county and state of Minnesota.