405 E. 6th St., PO Box 142
Blue Earth, MN 56013
Hours: Tuesdays and Thursdays from
10 to 12 and 1 to 3 or by special appointment.

Antique Machinery Shed

100 3672   
   Prior to the building of the Antique Machinery Shed in 2000 many folks expressed a desire to show or even donate their pieces of antique agricultural equipment but struggled to find a place to do that.  These pieces were occasionally brought to the fairgrounds during the annual county fair to put on display but then had to be taken back home because there was no facility available to leave it in for any length of time.  All of the 
gifted articles that the Historical Society had accumulated could only be stored at the Wakefield House or the Etta C. Ross Library Museum but there was just not room for any larger items.  It became apparent that an appropriate building to specifically house a whole range of agriculturally related equipment including horse gear, buggies, tractors, tools and collections was needed.

   Under the leadership of Larry Prange and other FCHS board members, a plan to build a 50-by-120 foot metal building for this purpose was born.  Prange had gotten many ideas for the new building while visiting an antique machinery shed at Farmfest near Redwood Falls and could only imagine what such a exhibit building would mean for the Historical Society and the Faribault County Fair.  After months of wading through the paperwork, getting bids and securing permits, the Patrick Murphy Construction crew began the building process.  

   The very top of the hill with its back to the riverbank seemed to be the most likely spot for the building so the first thing that needed to be done in preparation was to move an existing building from the site.  It was referred to as "the brown building" and was moved down the hill and eventually evolved into a working Blacksmith Shop.  The new shed began to take shape, built with metal walls and roof over a concrete floor.  The exterior was completed by adding a wide brick sidewalk and antique-stlye wooden benches.  A gentle breeze playing with the newly installed windmill added a rustic and calming touch that beckoned visitors to sit a spell, chat with friends and neighbors and spend some time enjoying relics from the past that were beginning to fill the shelves. 

   Today this beautiful and functional building is the center of attraction on History Lane during the Fair and welcomes visitors throughout the year by appointment.  Prange's prediction, "We expect our new building to be full of items in about two years," proved to be correct and more continue to come in each year.  Be sure to make a visit to the Antique Machinery Shed the next time you tour History Lane.