Menominee Clans Story coming to  the Oshkosh Public Museum 

A small gallery on the second floor of the Oshkosh Public Museum, referred to as the Winnebago Room, explores the topics of indigenous tribes, European settlement, military history and other notable events of Oshkosh’s past. The gallery was installed in the late 1990s and features an eclectic array of artifacts, including Native American tools, pioneer firearms, firefighting paraphernalia and military uniforms.
Effective October 15, the Winnebago Room will be closed as the existing exhibit is dismantled to transform this space into an appropriate setting to house an exhibit on the Menominee Clans Story. Currently at the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point Museum of Natural History, the Clans figures were meticulously hand carved and painted by Menominee artist James Frechette Jr. (1930-2006).
“The Oshkosh Public Museum is honored to have been chosen as the holder of these important Clans figures,” said Museum Director Brad Larson. “Each figure and its associated implements were done with authenticity and imbued with meaning and spiritual power. Once completed this spring, visitors will not only admire the beauty and spirituality of the figures, but they will also learn about their responsibility to the Menominee people and the natural world they are intimately tied to.”
The Museum’s dynamic People of the Waters exhibition opened last year, showcasing over 1,000 artifacts that represents Wisconsin’s prehistoric past and illustrates Native American culture which stretches back at least thirteen thousand years. Planning has also begun to develop a compelling, long-term exhibition to replace the current second floor galleries that will continue the story of Oshkosh’s rich history.
Located at 1331 Algoma Boulevard, the Museum’s regular hours are Tuesday–Saturday from 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. and Sunday from 1 p.m.–4:30 p.m. For more information about the Museum’s exciting events and exhibits, visit, call 920.236.5799 or email
As a non-profit regional history museum, the Oshkosh Public Museum is entrusted with the care of more than 300,000 collections and historical documents representing the history, culture and heritage of the region. An amazing resource for research and discovery, the Museum is nationally accredited by the American Alliance of Museums and listed on the State and National Register of Historic Places. Housed in the historic Sawyer home since 1924, the Museum brings history to life through quality exhibitions and special programs, engaging guests in ways that inspire discovery.

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Justin R. Mitchell

Justin is the founding editor of the Oshkosh Independent.

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