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Minnesota Historical Society to Document, Share COVID-19 Stories

Heart-wrenching and heartwarming stories shared weekly in new blog

COVID-19 is a global pandemic in a world that's more interconnected than ever. In an effort to document this historic time and to help people make connections today, the Minnesota Historical Society (MNHS) is asking Minnesotans to share their experiences about how COVID-19 is impacting their lives and how they are responding.

"COVID-19 is affecting every Minnesotan. Each of us has a personal story to share. One hundred years from now, people will want to know how we responded to this crisis," said Kent Whitworth, CEO and director of MNHS. "This is a chance to write part of our state's history and help inform future generations about how Minnesotans persevered in the face of great challenges."

Everyone is invited to contribute experiences and share images and videos at MNHS will share submissions through a new History is Now blog which will be updated weekly and on MNHS social media channels. In addition, MNHS will add a selection of submissions to the collections to be preserved for future generations.

Read recent submissions

"My daughter is a cashier/bagger at a Minneapolis grocery store. [...] Folks look out for each other to the best of their ability but it is still a stressful job. I sewed her masks and she gave some to coworkers. I'll sew some more and send them again." -Community contributor, Minneapolis

"Longing. I have a new granddaughter, our first, and I want to be there to help her parents who are working, but yet not expose her. I take extensive precautions when I visit her and otherwise have no public exposure." -Community contributor, West St. Paul

"My home town, Cloquet, burned to the ground in Oct. 1918. [...] My grandmother, Anna Dufault Lemieux, said that she escaped the flames by taking a train to Superior, Wisconsin, and waited it out. Bit by bit Cloquet recovered. I never asked grandma how she avoided the 1918 flu. Now more than 100 years later, her grandchildren cope with a similar threat. [...] I mourn the country's loss of life, as elderly Americans especially fall victim to this illness. And I mourn the business losses, and the dip in retirement savings on my 401K. Yet as a people we've climbed from financial disasters before and will again, the same way a little northern town emerged from ashes." -Community contributor, St. Paul

Through this collections effort, the day-to-day experiences, stories, artifacts and recollections will become the primary sources for future generations.

More ways to take part in Minnesota history

In addition, MNHS is making resources available today for people to better understand the world around them. These resources include the Northern Lights Interactive eBook, which is free for everyone through the end of the school year.

Plus, during "shelter-in-place," people of all ages and interests can access History at Home including MNopedia articles, "Minnesota History" books, family history resources and activity books for kids.

In each of these ways, MNHS is helping the people of Minnesota use the power of history to transform lives.

About the Minnesota Historical Society

The Minnesota Historical Society is a nonprofit educational and cultural institution established in 1849. MNHS collects, preserves and tells the story of Minnesota's past through museum exhibits, libraries and collections, historic sites, educational programs and publishing. Using the power of history to transform lives, MNHS preserves our past, shares our state's stories and connects people with history. Visit us at


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