Winona County History Center

Weekdays 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Sunday Noon - 4:00 PM
Offices and Archives Closed Weekends
160 Johnson St., downtown Winona
Phone: (507) 454-2723

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Laird Lucas Library and Archives

    Recognized as one of the finest local archives in Minnesota, the Laird Lucas Memorial Library contains irreplaceable collections of manuscripts, documents and photographs. Professional historians, students and family researchers find this outstanding facility a valuable resource to fill their needs for research, study and information. If you have ancestors from our area, you may discover your “roots” in this research center. We can provide you with information on how to trace your family tree or assist you with research in most areas of local history.

    The Winona County Historical Society Archives are located in the Laird Lucas Library on the lower level of the Winona County History Center, 160 Johnson Street in Winona, Minnesota. The library reading room can accommodate up to ten researchers at a time.

    Research topics should be prepared in advance. Students should understand that our collections may not contain exactly the information required and should be prepared to modify, refine or narrow the scope of their project to make the best use of what is offered.

    Stacks are closed to the public; staff archivists will bring materials to researchers as requested. While the staff will not supply or refine topics, they will help researchers identify potentially useful sources within the library. Microfilm reader-printers may be used with newspaper and census records stored on microfilm reels. Wi-Fi, and a public computer with Internet access are also available for use.

    Archivists are available to serve you on weekdays from 10:00 a.m. to noon, and from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. Admission is $5.00 except for students doing research and WCHS members.  A research fee of $15.00 per hour is charged for mail, telephone or e-mail requests.  Digital scans, photocopies and photo reproductions/enlargements are available for a charge.


    Archivists can be reached at 507-454-2723 ext. 2

    E-mail at

    Research Resources

    Company K at Gettysburg Web Site.

    Wabasha Prairie to Winona: The Territorial Era, 1849 – 1858.

    · Selco Online Catalog, including our own archives:

    · Winona County and regional newspapers from 1860 to the present

    · WSU Winona Newspaper Project, searchable online collection of Winona Newspapers:

    · Winona City Directories from 1866 to the present

    · Telephone books from 1914 to the present

    · Federal Census Microfilm for Winona County 1857 to 1920

    · Winona area business records, including Winona Wagon Co., Chamber of Commerce, C&NW Railroad, etc.

    · “Historical File” includes extensive and cataloged manuscript correspondence, press clippings, handbills, other published material and miscellaneous artifacts

    · Scrapbook Collection

    · “Old Settlers’ Scrapbook,” indexed, with material from 1841 to 1932

    · Image Collection, Winona and region, from 1860, including street scenes, river views, steamboats, stores and businesses, residences, group photos and individual portraits

    · Biographical/Genealogical File

    · Sanborn Insurance Maps of Winona for 1894 and 1917

    · Winona County Plat Books from 1867

    · Map Collection Winona and region

    · Winona County birth, marriage and death records, from newspapers) indexed

    · Winona County cemetery records, indexed

    · Historical, pictorial and biographical volumes

    · Passenger and immigration list, first edition

    · Other collections include post, greeting and calling cards, sheet music, records, posters, Bibles, film, slides, videos, programs and architectural renderings

    The library also contains a substantial number of books related to local political and business history, river and rail transportation, institutions, cities and towns in the region, Native Americans and the Mississippi River.