Each year, the staff of the James J. Hill House, 240 Summit Avenue, St. Paul, presents a display of historic Winter Carnival memorabilia in the Music Room of the house. The display coincides with the Winter Carnival in St. Paul, and provides a view into the past, highlighting the involvement of the Hill Family in the Carnival and winter sports activities. The display showcases examples of the breadth and depth of the Society’s collections which includes items representing 125 years of Carnival history.
The objects in the display date from 1887, the second year of the Winter Carnival, to 1917 when Louis Hill was involved with its revival. The lap robe and snow shoes belonged to James J. and Mary Hill, respectively. The objects inside the case are ephemera from Carnivals in 1887, 1888, and 1916, and are a good representation of graphic and advertising styles from those years. They also document early St. Paul businesses marketing Carnival souvenirs.
Paul Storch, Collections Liaison, Historic Sites and Museums Division