Programs and
Special Events

Upcoming Events

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Make Music Platteville at the Museums

Date: June 21
Time: 12:00-2:00

Make Music Day is a world-wide celebration of music held annually on the summer solstice, June 21. This year marks Platteville’s sixth year in the Make Music Celebration. The Mining & Rollo Jamison Museums will be hosting two back-to-back events on the front lawn. 
12:00-1:00 This Moment In Time will be a special gathering to honor and remember those that have been affected by COVID 19. Plan to play the gong at this participatory event. We will feel the vibrations over the hour in this solemn moment.
1:00-2:00 TriState Homeschool Choir will perform.

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Heritage Day

Date: July 4
Time: 10:00-4:00

Heritage Day is a July 4th community celebration of Platteville’s rich history and bright future that draws more than 700 visitors annually. We are pleased to announce that this year Heritage Day will be held in person at the Museums again. Come join us for a day of games, historical demonstrations, special exhibits, live music, period costumes, and food.

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College for Kids

Date: July 12-16, 2021 | Virtual
Time: 1-3 p.m.
Cost: $149 per household per program, +$99 for families with children registered for both programs 

The University of Wisconsin-Platteville Youth Programs gave gone virtual in 2021, and The Mining & Rollo Jamison Museums are collaborating with the Sauk County Historical Society in the creation of "How To Power-UP STEAM with History: College for Kids and Middle University." Call us for information at (608) 348-3301, or register online at https://www.uwplatt.edu/youth-programs

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Young Pioneers Camp

Date: July 19-22, 2021
Time: 1-3 p.m.
Cost: $35 | Registration Required (Scholarships available)

Young Pioneers is a fun four-day camp for students entering 2nd through 5th grades. Participants travel into the past and experience what life was like in the 1800s.

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2021 Miners Ball

Date: September 17th, 2021
Time: 5 p.m.
Cost: $50

The Friends of the Mining & Rollo Jamison Museums are pleased to carry on the tradition of this classic Platteville dance celebration started by engineering students in the 1930s. This formal event for couples of all ages invites everyone passionate about the history of Platteville to dress up, to enjoy a great dinner, and to swing to the music of a Big Band orchestra— just like generations of young engineers in training did starting back in 1926.

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Fall Community Free Day

Date: October 31
Time: All Day, Reservation Required
Cost: FREE for Platteville residents

Celebrate with us! This year the Museums are commemorating three milestone anniversaries - the 50th of the completion of the Mining Museum, the 45th of the opening of the Bevans Mine, and the 40th of the Rollo Jamison Museums! To thank the citizens of Platteville for their continued support, The Mining & Rollo Jamison Museums is excited to offer TWO community free days: season opening day, May 1; and season closing day, October 31. Museum admission, including a Guided Mine Tour and Train Ride (weather Permitting) is FREE to Platteville residents. Reservations are required. 

Past Events

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2021 Walk Down Main

Date: May 4, 2021 | Virtual /Live Hybrid Event
Time: 5:30 p.m.
Cost: Virtual Presentation/Walk Only, $10  Presentation/Walk/Dinner, $45/Single or $80/Couple

Discover the influences of architect Henry Kleinhammer around downtown Platteville during the hybrid virtual/live 2021 Walk Down Main. View a virtual presentation by James Hibbard via Zoom with live Q&A and take a self-guided walking tour of 14 featured buildings. Co-hosted by the Platteville Main Street Program and The Mining & Rollo Jamison Museums.  Image courtesy of UW-Platteville's Southwest Wisconsin Room and The Mining & Rollo Jamison Museums.

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Spring Community Free Day

Date: May 1
Time: All Day, Reservation Required
Cost: FREE for Platteville residents

Celebrate with us! This year the Museums are commemorating three milestone anniversaries - the 50th of the completion of the Mining Museum, the 45th of the opening of the Bevans Mine, and the 40th of the Rollo Jamison Museums! To thank the citizens of Platteville for their continued support, The Mining & Rollo Jamison Museums is excited to offer TWO community free days: season opening day, May 1; and season closing day, October 31. Museum admission, including a Guided Mine Tour and Train Ride (weather Permitting) is FREE to Platteville residents. Reservations are required.

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Winter Lyceum (7 of 7): “The Mining Museum’s Bevans Mine Adventure 45 Years Later”

The Platteville Mining Museum had only been in existence for a short time when staff and leadership began making plans to re-discover the 1845 Bevans Mine in the museum's backyard and to open it safely to the public using the latest in mine safety technology and Platteville-trained talent. On March 28, 2021, the Museums celebrated the legacy of our region's unique history through the words of actual local folks who not only had the know-how and commitment to make the Bevans Mine opening a reality, but who made this community mining project the City of Platteville's celebratory project in honor of the American Bicentennial and Platteville Sesquicentennial in 1976. 

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Winter Lyceum (6 of 7): “Kaiten: Japan’s WWII Human Torpedo That Stunned the U.S. Navy”

Mike Mair Presented “Kaiten: Japan’s WWII Human Torpedo That Stunned the U.S. Navy.” WWII ended 50 years earlier when a stunning discovery in 1995 led to a 25-year journey for Mike Mair of Platteville. John Mair, a U.S. Navy veteran, had never revealed to Mike and his siblings the horrific sinking of his ship USS Mississinewa (AO-59) on November 20, 1944. Mike interviewed nearly 300 U.S. and Japanese veterans, reviewed naval records, made scuba dives on Mississinewa while writing the book “Kaiten.”

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Winter Lyceum (5 of 7): “The Archeology of the Southern Driftless Area”

Driftless Pathways archaeologists Robert “Ernie” Boszhardt and Danielle Benden presented a virtual tour of the Native American cultural landscape in Wisconsin’s southern Driftless Area. Boszhardt and Benden summarized the 13,000 year human history of this region, from the end of the last Ice Age until Euro-American contact. This program illustrated the story of how Native Americans successfully adapted to an ever-changing landscape for millennia, as demonstrated in the camps, villages, effigy mounds, cave art and artifacts that people left behind.

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Winter Lyceum (4 of 7): “Curiosity Paving the Way for Perseverance”

Becky Williams Presented “Curiosity Paving the Way for Perseverance.” Understanding the past habitable conditions on Mars is a primary scientific driver for NASA’s Curiosity rover. During the last eight years, Curiosity has traversed across diverse terrain within Gale crater and drilled the Martian surface over two dozen times. Dr. Williams provided an update on the latest scientific findings and shared spectacular snapshots from the rover’s journey. She presented an overview of Perseverance, NASA’s robotic mission to Mars, which landed at Jezero crater on February 18, 2021.

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Winter Lyceum (3 of 7): “From Beetown to Atlanta: The Tale of a Civil War Drum”

Jeff Schave Presented “From Beetown to Atlanta: The Tale of a Civil War Drum.” In August of 1862, Burt Sumner and James Hayden traveled from Beetown to the county seat of Lancaster to enlist and answer President Lincoln’s “Call to Arms.” Serving in Company “C” of the Wisconsin 25th Regiment as musicians, they would march through Tennessee, Mississippi, and Georgia. As a silent witness to these events, Burt Sumner’s snare drum has not had the opportunity to share its stories and experiences. This presentation gave voice to this rare and unique artifact, and thus shared with pride “A Drums Tale.” 

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Winter Lyceum (2 of 7): “Black History: The Legacy of Slavery and Freedom in Wisconsin”

Dr. Eugene Tesdahl, Clayborn Benson, and Wilbur Arms, presented “Black History: The Legacy of Slavery and Freedom in Wisconsin.” They explored the rich African American history of southwest Wisconsin. The panel was a collaboration between the Wisconsin Black Historical Society and Museum of Milwaukee and the Mining and Rollo Jamison Museums of Platteville. Panelists explained ways bold Americans like America Jenkins, Paul Jones, and Rachel endured illegal enslavement in Wisconsin and reinvented themselves as free Wisconsinites. Learn how the Shepard, Greene, and Grimes families built Pleasant Ridge in 1850, a free black community west of Lancaster. Consider why their legacy reverberates across Wisconsin and beyond still today. 

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Winter Lyceum (1 of 7): “Rollo Jamison: 40 years in Platteville”

Patrick Daniels Presented “Rollo Jamison: 40 years in Platteville” on February 7, 2021. Forty years ago, Rollo Jamison, who had spent his lifetime “saving history,” donated his one-man museum to the City of Platteville. In this presentation, Patrick Daniels talked about Rollo’s life in Beetown, Wisconsin; finding a new home for the collection, moving the collection to Platteville, and the early days of the Rollo Jamison Museum, including the first Heritage Day which was a grand opening celebration culminating in a dedication of the museum on June 14, 1981. A recording of this event will be available on our Virtual Programs page soon. 

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Winter Pioneer Camp

Winter Break Virtual Pioneer Camp included three great video workshops and a take-home craft kit with everything needed to complete three seasonal workshops. Winter Pioneers created an Aquifer in a Bottle, a traditional Pomander Ball, and a Whirligig Spinner toy. Each project included an accompanying instructional video led by a Museum educator and the materials needed to complete the project.
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Holiday Horse Drawn Carriage Rides

Date: December 4th, 11th, 18th

The Museums celebrated the holiday spirit with horse-drawn carriage rides through downtown Platteville. Participates enjoyed the scenery and holiday lights around town while learning about local history and key architectural landmarks with the sights and sounds of a beautiful team of draft horses. If you missed the opportunity in 2020 or want to enjoy the experience again watch for information next November. 

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Friends Annual Meeting & Program: Slavery in Platteville, Part 3

The final lecture in a three-part series by Historian James B. Hibbard: "Black Lead Miners in Platteville: The Story of William Maxwell."  This presentation highlights William Maxwell's career as a Black lead miner. Maxwell holds the distinction of establishing his own lead diggings in Platteville, where he employed four other miners. He was also the first Black man in Grant County to successfully use the court system to collect a debt. A link to the recorded program will be added soon. 

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Friends Annual Meeting & Program: Highlights of 2020 & Plans for 2021

The Friends of The Mining & Rollo Jamison Museums  Annual Meeting. Friends Board and Museum staff presented highlights of the Museums’ 2020 accomplishments; revealed exciting plans and milestones for 2021; introduced museum staff members, including the new collections care team; and recognized and thanked the Museums many volunteers. A link to the recorded program will be added soon. 

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Slavery in Platteville, Part 2: The Rountree Family

Date: Thursday, October 22nd
Time: 7:00 p.m
Cost: FREE, Registration required

The second in a series of three presentations by historian James B. Hibbard. This presentation chronicles Platteville founder John H. Rountree’s ownership of slaves. It will look in depth at the circumstances surrounding Rountree’s slave ownership, his treatment of them, especially “Sister Rachel,” and how he eventually became an antislavery Republican. A Q&A with the speaker will follow each talk. For the health of our visitors, the presentation will be held via Zoom.

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Slavery in Platteville, Part 1: The Mitchell Family

Date: Thursday, September 17th
Time: 7:00 p.m
Cost: FREE, Registration required 

The Mining & Rollo Jamison Museums will be holding a series of three presentations by historian James B. Hibbard regarding slavery in Platteville. The first presentation explores the Mitchell family, especially James Mitchell’s ownership of two young slave girls. A Q&A with the speaker will follow the talk. For the health of our visitors, the presentation will be held via Zoom.
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HOURS

The Museums are closed for the tour season. Cultural programs and special events are offered year-round, go to our Events page for more information. The Museum will open for tours in May 2021. 

In Season: May - October | Open Daily | 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. 

Off Season: November - April | Closed Except for Seasonal Programs

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