2097 West Larpenteur Avenue
Saint Paul, MN 55113
phone: 651-646-8629
Memorial Day - Labor Day
Sunday, Wednesday - Saturday12 PM - 4 PM
Weekday mornings by appointment
September and October
Sunday, Saturday12 PM - 4 PM
Adults: $8
Seniors (over 62): $7
Youth (3-16): $5
Terry Swanson, Museum Contact


The story of the Gibbs Museum begins in 1833 near Batavia, New York. Jane DeBow was taken by a missionary family traveling west to work among the Dakota around Fort Snelling. Jane grew up in Minnesota and became familiar with the Dakota culture.

Later, in Illinois, Jane met and married Heman Gibbs. In 1849, the year Minnesota became a territory, the newlyweds came up the Mississippi River and bought 160 acres, the land on which the Gibbs farm house still stands. At first, Jane and Heman lived in a dugout sod house. The remains of this “soddy” have been excavated. Visitors can see this excavation site and a replica sod house.

In 1854, Jane and Heman built a larger cabin. With a growing family, additions to the farm house were made in 1867 and 1873. A trail leading from the Lake Calhoun area to the northern rice lakes crossed the Gibbs farm. Jane renewed her friendship with the local Dakota who would stop to visit her on their way to gather wild race.

Today visitors can tour the Gibbs family farm house. The Dakota style tipi and replica bark lodge allow visitors to explore the traditional life-ways of the Dakota. Visitors can observe a native prairie, a Dakota medicine garden, and traditional Dakota and pioneer crop gardens.

Visitors also will find the original white barn built by the Gibbs family in 1910 and the red barn, designed by prominent architect Edwin Lundie. The Stoen School, built in the 1880s, was moved from Chippewa County, Minnesota in 1966. The schoolhouse is furnished with wooden school desks, slate boards, McGuffey’s Readers, a pump organ, and a working school bell.


"The Ramsey County Historical Society inspires current and future generations to learn from and value their history by engaging in a diverse program of presenting, publishing and preserving."