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Pince-nez eyeglasses and case

Friday, April 29th, 2011

Pince-nez spectacles and case

Pince-nez eyeglasses worn by Minnesota Governor John A. Johnson. Pince-nez are eyeglasses clipped to the bridge of the nose. The lenses of these spectacles are joined at the center by a “C” shaped bridge. The spectacles are accompanied by a hinged sterling silver case lined with purple velvet. The case is engraved with a floral motif and the words “GOVERNOR / JOHN A. JOHNSON” on the front. John A. Johnson was the first Minnesota-born governor of the state and the first to die in office.

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“Wrestler” St. Patrick’s Day card

Thursday, March 17th, 2011

Jesse Ventura St. Patrick's Day card coverJesse Ventura St. Patrick's Day card inside

St. Patrick’s Day card featuring Jesse Ventura in a green leprechaun suit reads “After a glass of St. Patrick’s Day cheer”, inside reads “The streets of St. Paul become perfectly clear!” The sentiment of the card refers to Governor Ventura’s remarks on The Late Show with David Letterman in 1999, that the streets of St. Paul must have been laid out by drunken Irishmen, because the street grid made no sense. (There was a fair uproar after he said this.) Manufactured by Minnesota Moon, ca. 1999.

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Gourd painted like Jesse Ventura

Thursday, March 10th, 2011

Gourd painted like Jesse Ventura

A round, bulbous gourd painted to resemble then-governor Jesse Ventura. Written on the front of the shirt is “I’m “Jesse” that’s why!”. Made by Leta H., circa 2000.

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Harold Stassen’s hunting jacket

Friday, January 7th, 2011

Harold Stassen's hunting jacket

Hunting jacket worn by Governor Harold Stassen (1939 – 1943) when he won the 1925-1926 National Collegiate Rifle Association championship.

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Top hat owned by Floyd B. Olson

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

Top hat owned by Floyd B. Olson

This black silk top hat that belonged to Governor Floyd B. Olson (1931-36) was made by Dobbs 5th Ave. New York and sold by Malmstedt in Minneapolis. The governor’s initials are inside the hat’s crown. Circa 1930.

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Leading Minnesota: Items from four governors and their times

Wednesday, January 5th, 2011

Mark Dayton was inaugurated on January 3, 2011, as the 40th governor of Minnesota. In honor of this event, the Minnesota Historical Society created this slideshow featuring unique items from the MHS collections related to four of Minnesota’s past governors: Alexander Ramsey, Knute Nelson, Floyd B. Olson and Harold Stassen. These are just a few of the many manuscripts and objects associated with Minnesota politics in the Historical Society’s vast collections.

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Death mask of Governor Knute Nelson

Wednesday, January 5th, 2011

Death mask of Governor Knute Nelson

Upon his death in 1923, this mask of Knute Nelson was cast. Death masks were common among high profile figures in the 18th and early 19th centuries, and Nelson’s is one of many in the Minnesota Historical Society’s collection. The mask is made of plaster of Paris and painted dark brown.

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An Ounce of Preservation: A Guide to the Care of Papers and Photographs