Hannah Lindahl Children's Museum
Named in honor of former Elementary Supervisor of the School City of Mishawaka, the Hannah Lindahl Children’s Museum first opened back in 1946. Since then, it has conveyed the unique history of Mishawaka and the surrounding area to young and old alike. Appropriately located behind Emmons Elementary School, the museum uses its collection of historical artifacts to create interpretive exhibits that appeal to the inquisitive mind’s of young people. It has also become the repository for local genealogical data, to include the Mishawaka public school records from as far back as 1887.
Backstory and Context
Within its Gallery Hall, the museum features a large mural by Judith Goodrick Heying that traces the local history form the Ice Age through the early 1800s and the Northern Indiana that was dominated by the Potawatomi. Located near the mural is the replica of a Native American wigwam that children are free to explore. After travelling through the Conestoga Wagon Hallway, visitors enter the Pioneer Village that recreates a mid-1800s Mishawaka village, complete with one-room school house, general store, a furnished two-room house, post office and an all-eras toy store.
One of the more interesting features within the museum is the ornate yet simple Japanese Tea Room. This room exposes visitors to a very important cultural tradition among the Japanese who live in Mishawaka’s sister city in Japan, Shiojiri. The museum also is proud to display its Guske Dollhouse which is an intricate replica of a 1904 Victorian home. The museum’s Kaleidoscope Hall offers space for rotating exhibits and contains a viewing/gallery room that offers videos related to the museum’s exhibits.
Lastly, the museum hosts a Survive Alive House that emphasizes fire safety and a gift shop that sells gemstones, fossils, Japanese fans, puzzles and, of course, candy. The museum welcomes educational field trips and hosts special events, such as its recent Celebrating 200 Years of Indiana History.