The Roundup -

Lewis And Clark Trail Museum To Celebrate Renovation & Open Doors July 5


A crew from NDSU Extension plants crops in the location of the old Alexander school gym.

The Lewis and Clark Trail Museum, located in Alexander, will be hosting an open house from 12 -5 p.m. CDT on Sunday, July 5 to celebrate that the museum is now open to the public and to showcase the museum's new addition. 

In early June, a local Alexander farmer tilled a portion of the museum grounds and NDSU Williston Research Extension Center staff - Cameron Wahlstrom, Christy Sperling, and Meridith Ramsey came out and planted several different types of crops at the museum, including durum, spring wheat, barley, oats, peas, chickpeas, lentils, soybeans, hemp, flax, and safflower.

"Once the plants start growing, visitors will have the opportunity to see what type of crops are grown here and also the type of crops that would have been planted around Alexander when the town was first established. We will be putting up a kiosk containing information on the different types of crops planted," explained Cathy White, Lewis and Clark Trail Museum director.

The crops were planted where the Lewis and Clark Trail Museum's Alexander School gymnasium was located. The gymnasium, attached to the original 1914 three-story schoolhouse, was recently taken down due to continuous water issues. These water issues were caused due to the gymnasium being built underground. The gymnasium was built four feet below ground level, the locker rooms were located eight feet below ground level, and the boilers in the boys locker room were placed an additional two feet lower than that, which contributed to all the water damage in the building. 

White said, "Our goal with this addition is to encourage visitors to visit the outside of the museum. As soon as crops come in we are going to try and figure out where we could put a nice walking path that would lead to the other buildings and encourage people to look at some of the old equipment and other buildings."

In addition to the new crops being planted, the museum is also working on many other projects. They will be working on updating the Bannon room, which is a room that talks about the last lynching that took place in North Dakota. They will also be rearranging the display of war heroes and performing general cleaning and organizing of the museum displays. 

Everyone is encouraged to come out to the Lewis and Clark Trail Museum's open house on July 5 - CDC recommendations will be observed during the event and there will be social distancing signage posted and masks provided. 

More information on the open house can be found on the Lewis & Clark Trail Museum website and Facebook page.


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