Explore a selection of the Dubuque County Historical Society’s historical collections and discover a significant record of the people in the Mississippi River Valley and Dubuque County, reflecting the organization’s overall mission “to explore life of the Dubuque area, the Mississippi River, and the rivers of America and their global connections, and to research, interpret, educate and promote the conservation of their historical and natural environment.”

The Historical Society’s holdings present a comprehensive look at Native American life, settlement, boat building, commerce, river art, music, literature, and conservation. The collections are unique and widely interdisciplinary.

The Dubuque County Historical Society began collecting oral histories, archival, and photographic collections in 1950. In 1965, the Society accepted the collections of the Herrmann Museum, which had been gathering historical artifacts of Dubuque for almost a century. The augmented Historical Society continued its growth from 1964 to today by acquiring several historic sites, opening the National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium, and adding significantly to its collections.

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