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Category: history

McDonough Foundation supports Mathias Ham House restoration efforts

The James B. and Melita A. McDonough Foundation has awarded the Dubuque County Historical Society (DCHS) $20,000 for restoration efforts at the Mathias Ham House located at 2241 Lincoln Ave. in Dubuque, Iowa. Built and expanded over the course of the mid-1800s, the Mathias Ham House is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Over the last four years, DCHS has taken strategic steps to plan and prepare for the execution of a Mathias Ham House restoration. Guided by a historic struc... Read More
at Sunday, September 19, 2021

Deaccessioning: History is given a new purpose

A treasure trove of history. That is what some might call the collections storage at the Dubuque County Historical Society (DCHS). Each piece they preserve has a story and provenance, some more significant than others. Continually,  they collect and preserve history through inanimate objects, progressively making their collections stronger. To actively expand their collection, which tells the stories that embody Dubuque County and the Mississippi River, they need space. That space is ru... Read More
Posted by William Minnick at Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Dubuque County Historical Society receives challenge grant to restore the Mathias Ham House

The Dubuque County Historical Society (DCHS) and its Mathias Ham House were recently awarded a $270,000 challenge grant from the Jeffris Family Foundation. The grant, which requires DCHS to raise a matching $540,000 by June 30, 2024, will support preservation and maintenance of the Mathias Ham House’s interior finishes and mechanical and building systems. “The Jeffris Foundation is delighted to be proceeding with a challenge grant to preserve the Mathias Ham House,” states ... Read More
at Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Dubuque County Historical Society launches new initiative to collect materials related to tumultuous year

The Dubuque County Historical Society (DCHS) has announced that it will be launching a new initiative called Hindsight 2020, a community collecting initiative to document and preserve the events of 2020 and beyond as experienced by the Dubuque County area. DCHS is asking that residents of Dubuque County donate materials related to the events of 2020 and early 2021. The organization hopes that by collecting items from the general public it can preserve and interpret the diverse and unique sto... Read More
at Thursday, June 24, 2021

National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium Wins 2021 AASLH Award of Excellence

NASHVILLE, TN—June 3, 2021—The American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) proudly announces that the National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium (River Museum) is the recipient of an Award of Excellence for its Iowa Marine Engine & Launch Works Exhibit within its new River of Innovation Gallery. The AASLH Leadership in History Awards, now in its 76th year, is the most prestigious recognition for achievement in the preservation and interpretation of state and... Read More
Posted by Wendy Scardino at Thursday, June 3, 2021

Mathis Ham Historic Site opens 2021 season with new exhibit

The Mathias Ham Historic Site will open for the season on Saturday, May 29, 2021, with a new exhibit entitled Sew Many Quilts! More than simple blankets, quilts have a long tradition of functionality, practicality, and beauty. Featuring a variety of quilts, Sew Many Quilts! is an introduction to quilt-making as a practical art form. Guests will discover the artistry and history associated with each quilt and foster an appreciation for the skill, ingenuity, and individuality displayed within.... Read More
at Thursday, April 29, 2021

Hard Won, Not Done Mini-Exhibit Celebrates 100th Anniversary of 19th Amendment

One hundred years ago, on August 18, 1920, the 19th Amendment became law as Tennessee became the 36th state to ratify the amendment. Today, a new mini-exhibit at the National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium highlights those locally who fought to pass the 19th Amendment, which reads “the right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.” “From Anna Bell Lawther and Mary Newbury Adam... Read More
at Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Dubuque County Historical Society recognizes all homes as living museums and calls for home curators to share their collections on social media

The Dubuque County Historical Society (DCHS) and the National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium (NMRMA) are inviting the local and extended community to participate in a digital collection of artifacts through social media. On Monday, April 13, 2020, the DCHS will announce a social media call for artifacts and encourage individuals to share a photo of an artifact and its significance to their home museum, using #HomeMuseumCollections. “As we continue to social distance and stay ... Read More
at Monday, April 13, 2020

President Hoover Inducted into the National Rivers Hall of Fame

President Herbert Hoover’s lasting impact on America’s river systems will be recognized on March 27, 2020, at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum in West Branch, Iowa, where Hoover will be posthumously inducted into the National Rivers Hall of Fame. Born in 1874 in West Branch, Iowa, Herbert Hoover was an engineer and has arguably impacted America’s rivers through public policy more than any other individual in the nation’s history. Responsible for dist... Read More
at Thursday, February 27, 2020

Smithsonian Museum Day scheduled for April 4 at Mathias Ham Historic Site

The community is invited to celebrate Museum Day at the Mathias Ham Historic Site on Saturday, April 4, from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. The annual celebration is led by Smithsonian magazine in partnership with Smithsonian affiliates across the country. Museum Day tickets are available at Each ticket provides free admission for up to two people on Saturday, April 4, and one ticket is available per email address submitted. Costumed interpreters will be available at th... Read More
at Wednesday, February 26, 2020