Carlton County Historical Society Gets New Home

Lease transferred to historical society.

CLOQUET, Minn.- The Carlton County Historical Society now officially has a new home.

The lease for the 99-year-old Shaw Memorial Library Building on Cloquet Avenue was officially transferred to the Historical Society on Wednesday.

What was once a place where Cloquet residents would browse books is now a place where they can browse through their county’s history.

The deed to the building was signed over in March.

This came after the Historical Society and an outside group had gone back and forth with documentation.

In the end, former County Commissioner turned Historical Society member Susan Zmyslony, said the county accepted the Historical Society’s bids for the property.

“It’s a historical building, it’s been here for a while,” she said. “They’ve done a lot of hard work to keep it here and to provide this to the citizens of Carlton County.”

“I think we just need to put the word out that this is here and it’s a little hidden gem in the middle of Carlton County.”

Now that the building is theirs, Historical Society officials said they can start maintenance on the nearly 100-year-old structure, including replacing the roof.

The building now houses memories of a Carlton County that once was, and for many, a Cloquet they grew up with.

“Well for me it’s quite exciting, and kind of a personal thing as well,” Anja Bottila, Society Treasurer, said. “I started working in this building in the Children’s Library back in 1980 when I was a teenager.”

“And even over the years sometimes have dreamed of the Library as my home.”

The Cloquet Public Library moved to its current location in 1987 from the Shaw Memorial Building.

According to Bottila, it’s outgrowing that location and will soon get an addition.

Library workers told the Historical Society that when they moved to the new building, they took an old picture of Founder George Shaw with them, which he “never forgave them for.”

Reportedly, it haunted the halls of the current library.

Hopefully his spirit is happy, now that he’s back home.

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