Genealogy, Archives & Research

In addition to the Genealogy Group meetings listed below, the Steele County Historical Society will host several guest speakers.  Click here for more information on the topics, dates and times.  These are free to SCHS members and $2 for non-members.

Genealogy Club

FIRST Tuesday of the month at 10 am Steele County History Center

Do you have an interest in researching your family tree? Join our genealogy group at 10 am in the History Center. this group meets the first Tuesday each month and will help you to trace your family tree. FREE for SCHS members. $5 for non-members.


Courthouse Finds – Using vital, probate and land records at the Courthouse. — June 6, 10AM

What’s at the Library? OPU, SCHS, MHS, Hennepin County, National Archives will be covered. —  August 1, 10AM

Using the Census – How to find what you are looking for using  indexes, browsing for lost ancestors, immigration, marriage dates, wealth, occupation. —  September 5, 10AM

Beginning Genealogy, Holiday Celebration– bring an ethnic treat, coffee or cider. — December 5, 10AM



Guests are welcome to use our Research and Genealogy Room. Research access is free for SCHS members and $5 for non-members. If you are planning a visit, please call ahead (507-451-1420) and make an appointment so that we can best serve you.IMG_0607

Our collection of historic Owatonna photographs is available to view online.
Click here to view our collection.

The Steele County Historical Society, since 1949, has been collecting documents, books and photographs relating to local history for many years. In addition, members and interested parties have donated family history information. Dedicated volunteers have organized an extensive obituary file of individuals buried in Steele County.

(Prices subject to change.)
Research rates:
$10 per hour, with half an hour minimum charge for all research.

Copy costs:
50 cents for 8 1/2 X 11 plain paper *
$1.00 for 8 1/2 X 14 plain paper*
$1.00 for 8 1/2 X 14 archival paper*

Photographic reprints, on photo paper:
Low quality resolution (150 dpi)
3X5 $2.50 plus postage*
8X10 $5.00 plus postage *

Higher quality resolution (300 dpi)*
3X5 $5.00 plus postage*
8X10 $10 plus postage*

Electronic Files:
$1.00 low resolution – emailed
$1.00 high resolution + $5.00 per CD/DVD and postage*

*taxable item (7.05%)