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MCHS History

The Martin County Historical Society came into existence on February 2, 1929, at the Martin County Courthouse at which time the constitution was adopted. It was founded by Mrs. H. W. Brodt. The first board of directors included several famous Martin County citizens such as Judge Julius Haycraft (the first president) and Major Arthur M. Nelson.

Mrs. H.W (Maud) BrodtJudge Julius HaycraftMajor Arthur M. Nelson
From L to R: Mrs. H.W. (Maud) Brodt, Judge Julius Haycraft, Major Arthur M. Nelson

In 1956 Dr. & Mrs. Roscoe C. Hunt donated $15,000.00 to the MCHS for the purchase of the former Catholic School on Blue Earth Avenue. This then became the Pioneer Museum, which is made up of three floors of displays. Dr. Hunt had a room named after him in the museum for his generosity.

Dr. Roscoe HuntEarly Pioneer Museum
From L to R: Dr. Roscoe Hunt, An Early Picture of the Pioneer Museum

A new addition on the west side of the museum was completed in 1995 which expanded the staff’s office space and created the main lobby area which has turned into another popular display area.

A state of the art Research Library was completed in 2003 which houses the majority of MCHS’s many resources and makes for a great spot to hold meetings. An elevator has also been added to the museum to make our displays much more accessible.

In 2009 the MCHS purchased the house next-door, which used to be the Catholic Rectory, and added the building and property to the Pioneer Museum’s grounds. Also, the Martin County Genealogical Society moved into the building in 2009 bringing their research expertise, knowledge, and resources with them.

Pioneer Museum Today
The Museum at Present