Department of History Images Source: Minnesota Historical Society

Central Minnesota History Center

The Central Minnesota Historical Center is a collection of documentation of the history of the area’s counties. Founded in 1967, the CMHC houses an impressive source of political materials, local community history, individual family materials, and an extensive oral history and photograph collection. The CMHC holds materials from the following counties: Benton, Chisago, Crow Wing, Isanti, Kanabec, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Pine Lake, Sherburne, Stearns, Todd, Wadena, and Wright.

The Center provides an invaluable research facility to both SCSU students and members of the communities we serve. Academic research, genealogical documentation, digitization, copying and further research needs are provided by staff at the CMHC.

The center is directed by Dr. Don Hofsommer and staffed by St. Cloud State University graduate students in the history and public history programs. Our facilities are open to the university community and to those members of the general public interested in local and regional history. The CMHC schedule at the center changes frequently and it is recommended that visitors schedule an appointment to view materials.

The Central Minnesota Historical Center Guide has been created to aid researchers and provide general information about the CMHC collections. Feel free to call if there are any questions about how to use it.

Our Collection

Our General Manuscript Collection contains papers and documents from area organizations and poltical leaders. The archives house numerous papers related to U.S. Representatives Frederick Marshall and Richard M. Nolan and many others. Included with these collections are oral interviews about politics.

The collection includes documents gathered from area Churches of various denominations. Records include meeting meeting minutes, Board of Trustees records, treasurers’ books, registers, celebration booklets, and directories. These documents may be microfilmed or paper format. The church histories also include a rural church history interview collection.

The CMHC houses a substantial collection of interviews with Central Minnesota veterans of World War II. The experiences of the veterans vary widely. Personal reminiscences, books and articles written by veterans are also included. Summaries and transcripts area available for some interviews.

Our photograph collection has a large collection of photos from the Ameraican Association of University Women. We also have pictures of politians, area organizations, and early photos of the St. Cloud area and other towns.

Mission Statement

The Minnesota Regional Research Centers share the following core mission:

  1. To identify, collect, and process the written and oral historical record of Minnesota’s various regions, and to make this available in a manner that furthers the Minnesota Historical Society’s mandate to collect and to preserve materials relating to the history of the state.
  2. To enrich the learning and research opportunities for students and faculty of the State University System and the University of Minnesota, and for the general public by providing access to the collections of the Minnesota Historical Society and the MRRC network.
  3. To provide introductory practical experience for students in archival work, historical research, and oral history.
  4. To encourage cooperation and coordination among the Minnesota Regional Research Centers, their host institutions, and the Minnesota Historical Society to achieve a network that enhances the preservation and use of historical sources.


Miller Center, Room 314-D 720
Fourth Avenue South
St. Cloud MN 56301-4498
Phone: 320.308.3254

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