View of the city of West bend from the 1889 Courthouse

Our Impact

Telling the Stories of Our Community

Since 1875, we’ve been preserving the rich history of Washington County. In the past few years, we’ve grown a lot, from becoming a fully independent nonprofit to creating a direction for the future.

In 2022, the Washington County Historical Society celebrates 60 years of telling our community’s stories. In that time, we’ve become the home to over 38,000 artifacts and over 17,000 photographs. The 1889 Courthouse, 1886 Jailhouse, and St. Agnes Historic Site are all listed on the National Register of Places.

Most importantly, these objects, photographs, and locations contain an invaluable wealth of stories. It’s the stories — the intangible human connections — that make these tangible objects worth saving.

How We Tell Our Stories

  • Blogging and Podcasting to bring heritage everywhere through creating evergreen content that makes our stories reachable and relevant to all audiences
  • Exhibits take visitors through the history of Washington County from the end of the last ice age to the 21st century.
  • Programs and Events ranging from hands-on activities to lecture-style presentations, from bus tours to fun events like our annual trivia night, make our stories come alive and provide ways for visitors to connect with history and each other.
  • Guided tours provide more context for visitors and create connections between our staff and volunteers and the communities we serve. Stories turn into conversations, leading to even deeper meaning-making for visitors. 

You Make Our Work Possible!

Community support allows us to continue telling Washington County’s stories. We invite you to become a member and consider making an additional gift of support. Contact us about sponsorship opportunities for local businesses as well.