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Meaning “old farm” in Swedish, the Gammelgården Museum is the only open air museum devoted to preserving, presenting and promoting Swedish immigrant heritage in the United States. In buildings that have been carefully preserved and restored, visitors can get a glimpse of the daily lives & artifacts of these immigrants and participate in events and classes. The main exhibit in the Välkommen Hus and our Butik gift shop are open daily May – December.


The Välkommen Hus is built in the style of 1850’s Swedish farmhouse and houses a classroom/meeting area, Butik gift shop and restrooms.

The Välkommen Hus  is built in the style of 1850’s Swedish farmhouse and houses a classroom/meeting area, Butik gift shop and restrooms.

Präst Hus was built in 1868 as the first parsonage for the Elim Congregation. This is the oldest existing parsonage in Minnesota.

Präst Hus was built in 1868 as the first parsonage for the Elim Congregation. This is the oldest existing parsonage in Minnesota.

The Immigrant Hus features the same Swedish log construction as the Gammelkyrkan and the Präst Hus and was used as a home until the early 1900’s.

 The Immigrant Hus features the same Swedish log construction as the Gammelkyrkan and the Präst Hus and was used as a home until the early 1900’s.

Gammelkyrkan is the first sanctuary of Elim Lutheran Church, and was built in 1856 and is the oldest Lutheran church building in Minnesota.

Gammelkyrkan is the first sanctuary of Elim Lutheran Church, and was built in 1856 and is the oldest Lutheran church building in Minnesota.

Stuga, in immigrant times, meant a rectangular building, with 1 door, a corner stove, the home of peasants.

Stuga, in immigrant times, meant a rectangular building, with 1 door, a corner stove, the home of peasants.

Ladugård (barn) was constructed in 1879 at the request of Rev. Eric Hedeen.

Ladugård (barn) was constructed in 1879 at the request of Rev. Eric Hedeen.

Aerial view of the Gammelgården Museum

Aerial view of the Gammelgården Museum

Come explore immigrant life in the 1850's! Our 5 historic buildings on this old (Gammel) small farm (garden) tell the story of the oldest Swedish settlement in Minnesota. Festivals, tours, children's programs, events and exhibits are family friendly. Visit our website: gammelgardenmuseum.org for more information.

Established 1972 to Preserve, Present and Promote Swedish Immigrant Heritage, the Gammelgarden Museum hosts cultural events throughout every season. Main stays, such as Santa Lucia Dagen, Midsommar Dag, and the Running of the Meatballs are hosted annually. To learn more about these cultural calibrations, read more about it on our website, gammelgardenmuseum.org/events/. A full calendar of events can be found here: gammelgardenmuseum.org/calendar/

The Gammelgarden Museum is home to six historic buildings which embody Swedish culture. See our website for virtual tours, at gammelgardenmuseum.org/buildings/#

  • Välkommen Hus: Built in 2002 during our 30th year, the Välkommen Hus became a reality of many years of planning, construction, and an investment of over $560,000. It is a two-story frame building with a full basement and elevator for persons with disabilities. The style is 1850’s Swedish farmhouse and it is painted Falun red. The inside of this building features the Gathering Room (lobby), Scandia Butik Gift Shop, restrooms, office and Passage Room (an exhibit room and classroom with a capacity to hold 45 people).
  • Präst Hus: The Präst Hus is the oldest existing parsonage in Minnesota. It was built in 1868 as the first parsonage for Elim Lutheran Church, where Pastors L.O. Lindh and Eric Hedeen and their families lived. The house was sold in 1884 to Pastors L.0. Lindh and Eric Hedeen and families lived in the Präst Hus which was sold in 1884 to Peter Magnus Nelson, his wife Lovisa Marie Petersdotter Nelson and their children, Josephine, Axel and Annie, who was 13 weeks old at the time. Annie lived in the house until she was 88 years old and sold the property back to Elim for $7,500 in 1970. This is the oldest existing parsonage in Minnesota.
  • Gammelkyrkan: Gammelkyrkan is the first sanctuary of Elim Lutheran Church and is the oldest Lutheran church building in Minnesota. The church was built in 1856 on a site near Hay Lake, two miles south of Gammelgården Museum. Used as a church until 1860, then moved and used as Hay Lake School until 1899; it was then sold, dismantled and moved to the Frank Forsell farm and used until 1981. Mr. and Mrs. Archie Forsell donated it to Elim and Gammelgården. Once again it was dismantled, moved and restored. Rededication was September 12, 1982 by Prince Bertil of Sweden and Bishop Herbert Chilstrom of Minnesota. Exterior repairs were completed in 1995 through the kindness of the Skandia Insurance Corp. of Sweden.
  • Ladugård:The present Ladugård (barn) was constructed in 1879 at the request of Rev. Eric Hedeen. When the property was sold to the Nelson family in 1884, the barn was listed on the deed. The hitching posts were removed from the perimeter of Elim Lutheran Cemetery and the front of Elim Lutheran Church when roads were widened and paved. The lower level of the barn was for livestock, the upper level for tools, crops and vehicle storage. The Ladugård hosts a Log Cabin pattern quilt on the Washington County Barn Quilt Trail.
  • Immigrant Hus: The Immigrant Hus features the same Swedish log construction as the Gammelkyrkan and the Präst Hus. The exact construction date of this house is unknown, but the original land patent is dated 1855. It was used as a home until the early 1900’s and then was used as a granary. Mr. and Mrs. Russell Jackson donated this building to Gammelgården in 1985 when it was moved from its original site on Bone Lake (Bonne Lake). Exterior siding added 1996. It is similar in size to home dwellings in Sweden and could be built by two people with simple hand tools. In the winter this home could be heated by a wood stove. Early Swedish families did not spend lots of time inside during summer, only during cold weather. When this house was built it most likely had a dirt floor, the tongue and groove floor was added at a later date. A unique feature of this house is an original window with panes of glass.
  • Stuga: This Swedish stuga, in immigrant times, meant a rectangular building, with one door, a corner stove, the home of peasants. The word now means a small vacation home. The outside is painted with Swedish falun red paint; the inside has the original 1930’s paint. Falun Red could be made on the farm by mixing rye flour, linseed oil and the finely ground tailings from the iron mine at Falun, Sweden. It was cheap and easily made paint and was long lasting. This Swedish Stuga was on the St. Croix River estate of Gotlieb Magny, architect, who used it as a guest house. The STUGA was a gift to Gammelgården in 1979.