Sherburne History Center plans Feb. 23 county birthday bash

Planning is underway for a special party at the Sherburne History Center. The county’s 157th birthday will be celebrated with cake, crafts, games and fun.
The event is scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 23 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. There will be children’s games and crafts, a scavenger hunt and plenty of birthday cake.
“This will be our second birthday celebration,” said Curator Maureen Galvin. “We were trying to figure out planning for a winter event, and Mike Brubaker, our executive director, thought of it last year. It was kind of fun. We tried different crafts and family oriented craft games, and having cake was a lot of fun.”
Galvin said cross-country skiing on city-maintained trails will available during the Feb. 23 event if there’s snow. Skiers should bring their own equipment.
“We are a free museum, and we want to attract people from different parts of the county,” she said. “We have lots of family history programs throughout the year.” Galvin said Brubaker presents a free monthly genealogy program series. This month’s topic is searching for military records from the Civil War to World War I. The Saturday, Feb. 16 program at the Sherburne History Center will run from 10:30 a.m. to noon.  “You don’t have to have family from Sherburne County to learn from this program,” Galvin said. “Everyone is welcome. Every month Mike will have a different topic and participants can bring in questions.”
The Sherburne History Center building was completed in 2006, Galvin said. The Center is located on 40 acres, and the building includes one exhibit gallery.
“The main exhibit in the gallery showcases the general history of Sherburne County,” she said. Different display panels take visitors on a journey through time.
The Center also has a reference library that can be used for general historical research or family specific research for those who are tracing a family tree.
The Sherburne History Center’s Museum Store features numerous books about state and local history, nature guides as well as assorted gifts, Galvin said.
In addition, the center collects both two and three-dimensional objects with a direct connection to Sherburne County. Even if an item is not on exhibit, it can be viewed by visitors who make arrangements ahead of time. Items can be retrieved by staff from collection storage for viewing once research is completed.
“We also have a half-mile walking trail that has interpretive panels,” she said. “For us, it’s an outdoor exhibit that talks about the people who lived here before.”
Sherburne County officially organized on Feb. 25, 1856. Three county commissioners were elected in April 1856. The first commissioner meeting was held May 2 and 3, 1856 in Humboldt (now Big Lake) at Joseph Brown’s home on the shore of Big Lake.
The county is named for Moses D. Sherburne, associate justice of the Supreme Court of the Minnesota Territory (1853 – 1857). Sherburne helped to compile Minnesota’s statutes and may have lived in the Orono area, near Elk River, of Sherburne County for a short period.
According to the Minnesota Historical Society website library finding aids section, Sherburne was a St. Paul attorney and a district court judge of the Minnesota second judicial district. He is also credited with helping to guide the Minnesota territory into statehood.
For more about the Feb. 23 event, call the Sherburne History Center at 763-261-4433 or 763-262-4433 (metro line) or visit
The center is located at 10775 27th Ave. S.E. in Becker. The society collects, preserves and explains the history of all of Sherburne County. Its mission is to foster a sense of community by connecting people with the past and help people understand the past so they can make informed choices about the future.

Contact Managing Editor Tim Hennagir at [email protected]