The Mansion Museum in Forest City, Iowa, is maintained by Winnebago Historical Society. The Mansion Museum was originally an old Victorian home and was built at the turn of the twentieth century.
Banker Charles Thompson constructed the mansion in 1899. Peabody & Beauley designed the house. Later on, the house was restructured and converted into a hotel. In 1977, the Winnebago Society, with the help of the City, acquired and turned it into a historical museum. While the mansion morphed into a museum, the room structures have been preserved. Including the entryway, there are 18 different rooms in the house. The rooms retain various original artifacts that were collected since 1899.
The museum is a fascinating place and has an excellent collection of historical artifacts pertaining to Northeastern Iowa. Objects therein, help depict the history of Winnebago County and Northeastern Iowa. Some of the collections include vintage clothing, paintings, photos, musical instruments, antique furniture, Native American items, and farm tools. The museum also possesses a beautiful assembly of arrowheads belonging to Native Americans.
The Leibrand-Whiteis Center within the mansion opened its doors in 2012. The center collates and preserves historic information about Winnebago County. The historic center contains many local news items from 1874 to 1921 and undeveloped photos taken between 1874 and 1950. They are working on collating naturalization records from the courthouse, and birth and death records. If you are an Iowa native, you might be able to trace your family tree here.
For more information about the museum, please email the museum at mansionmuseumforestcityiowa.org or click here.
Museum Hours: The museum is open from 1 pm to 4 pm on Sundays (May until October).
336 N. Clark St.,
Come and visit the Victorian styled mansion, and discover the history of Winnebago County with your friends and family.
* Image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons.