State School Orphanage Museum, Owatonna

4.6
#3 of 13 in Things to do in Owatonna
You're invited to tour the museum and campus:

Self-Guided Tours: The Orphanage Museum is located in the City Administration Building where you may view videos and see photos and artifacts that tell the story of the children who lived this history. Explore the campus by following a six-station Outdoor Audio Tour during summer hours.

Group Tours: Admission is charged for Group Tours. The tour includes a museum visit, Cottage 11 tour, and a 1930s video. Group tours are preferred Tues., Wed., or Thurs. between 10 am and 3 pm. Other appointments available by request. Book tours by calling 507.774-7369
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State School Orphanage Museum Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5.0
49 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • It's free. It's history. It's interesting! Really loved seeing the displays and reading the stories throughout. Went here in the middle of the week and we were the only guests. No one bothered us, and...  more »
  • This respectfully restored orphanage museum is a rare and poignant look at the history of The Minnesota State Public School for Dependent and Neglected Children, a residential and educational facility...  more »
Google
  • The museum is underwhelming. It's good, I guess. Someone put a lot of work into it. If you have a connection to the place, it is probably way more interesting. The cemetery is where it's at. Don't miss it if you go to the school grounds. The museum gives you an idea of how the kids lived, but the cemetery really drives home the fact that this place was brutal. There is something surreal about standing with 200 gravestones, knowing that only one of them made it to adulthood.
  • Wow!!! Loved the History here, We spent over 2 hours visiting the Children's Cemetery, The cottages and the Museum. It was so educational and I wish I could remember the woman that was working at Cottage 11 she was so vivid and detailed very well about the Past of this place, she really made me get a real feeling of what life was like back then especially for Henry. We will definitely be back. Thanks 😊☺️

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