Washington County Historic Courthouse
Beginning May 1, 2019, the Historic Courthouse will be open daily. Public hours will be 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Wednesday; 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday and Friday; and 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Read on...
The Lake Elmo Modern Campground (sites 1-80) will be closed after September 8, 2019, for an improvement project. Read on...
|Visiting the Historic Courthouse|
|Public Hours / Self-Guided Tours
|9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
9 a.m. - 6 p.m.
10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
|Free; Donations Accepted|
|Guided History Tours||Mon-Wed
|11 a.m. 1 p.m.,
11 a.m., 1 p.m.,
3 p.m., 5 p.m.
11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m.
|Free; Donation Suggested|
|Private/Group Tours||Please call ahead to schedule||$2 / Per Person
|Public Hours / Self-Guided Tours||Mon-Fri
|9 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
10 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
|Free; Donations Accepted|
|Guided History Tours||Wed-Sat
|11 a.m. 1 p.m., 3 p.m.
||Free; Donation Suggested|
|Group Tours||Please call ahead to schedule||$2 / Per Person
To ensure the best tour experience, public tours are limited to 15 participants per tour guide. Large groups will be divided for a tour rotation. If you are visiting with a large group of 10 or more, please call 651-275-7075 to make arrangements. Unscheduled tour groups may be asked to tour the building without a guide.
The Historic Courthouse may be closed on holidays. Please call 651-275-7075 to check the tour schedule.
In addition to self-guided and guided tours, the Washington County Historic Courthouse offers fun activities for children, families, and all those who are young-at-heart.
Scavenger Hunt: Step into the shoes of a County Sheriff and hone your detective skills with the Courthouse Scavenger Hunt. Search for items throughout the building - children who find them all will win a prize!
Playing the Past: Uncover the history of Washington County and the lives of area residents using our interactive biography boxes and timeline. Using what you have learned as inspiration, create your own character! Visit the clothing display and dress up in vintage clothing according to your character's time period! Will you be a pioneer, a fine Victorian lady/gentleman, judge or deputy?
Create a Character: Learn about the courthouse characters created by volunteers throughout the years to aid in fundraising efforts, including Winfield the Cat and Gus & Sig, the courthouse mice. Create your own courthouse character and write a story or create a comic strip
Children's Corner: Stop by the children's corner to touch and feel courthouse artifacts, including old jail keys and snow catchers, and stamp a county seal using an antique stamp.
*A St. Croix Valley History curriculum unit is also available for teachers and homeschoolers using the interactive biography boxes available at the Historic Courthouse. It is free to download and use.
Self-guided Walking Tours
Begin a self-guided walking tour of downtown Stillwater or the South Hill neighborhood at the Washington County Historic Courthouse. Created by the City of Stillwater, walking tour maps are available at the Historic Courthouse. Use the links below to print your own copy.
- South Hill Walking Tour Brochure
- Historic Downtown Walking Tour Brochure
- Cultural Landscape Walking Tour Brochure
Guided History Strolls
- Each stroll will be approx. 45 minutes and include some stair climbing along a mile-long route offering beautiful views and history highlights.
- Trail routes will include uneven staircases, pavement and sidewalks, traversing light terrain. Please dress for the weather and wear athletic shoes.
|2018 Schedule - Check in at the Parks office|
|Saturday, September 15, 10:00 a.m.*|
The Washington County Historic Courthouse invites you to experience a guided, 60 minute Historic Stairs Fitness Hike in beautiful Downtown Stillwater. Hikes will include a warm-up and fitness challenges along the way with a little history mixed throughout.
- Participants should plan to arrive a few minutes early
- For ages 13+; minors must be accompanied by an adult
- Hikes traverse uneven and steep historic staircases, paved trail, grass, and sidewalks. Please wear athletic footwear and dress for the weather
FREE with a $10 recommended donation/person. Hike proceeds benefit the Restoration Fund and help to preserve this historic site. *Cash, check and charge accepted.
2019 Schedule - Meet on the front stairs of the Historic Courthouse
Washington County Parks is pleased to offer tours and programs at the Washington County Historic Courthouse designed to meet Scout requirements for specific badges or awards. All programs include a tour of the historic courtroom, 1900's county jail and exhibit rooms.
All Girl Scout programs listed below are council-sponsored and registration is through the Girl Scouts River Valleys' website. Each program below fulfills all badge requirements and badges are distributed at the end of the program.
|January 19||Playing the Past - Girl Scouts||4-5/Junior||Register Now|
|February 2||Celebrating Community - Girl Scouts||2-3/Brownie||Register Now|
|March 23||Playing the Past - Girl Scouts||4-5/Junior||Register Now|
Small Group Programs
Our programs are also available to individual troops in need of more flexible scheduling. Small group programs do not include badges or patches, however they will fulfill badge requirements and arrangements can be made to purchase of badges outside of the program.
Small groups are considered to be less than 20, including scouts, siblings and chaperones. The minimum ratio of chaperone to children is 1:10. Please contact Historic Courthouse staff at 651-275-7075 to learn more about more options to reserve programs exclusively for your group.
Step out the office for a day of history and fun team-building activities! Split into teams and race to see who can complete the Historic Courthouse Scavenger Hunt first, take a customized tour of this historic site (including the old 1900's County Jail), begin a self-guided walking tour of the South Hill neighborhood, picnic on the lawn and more!
The Historic Courthouse also rents meeting space for small and large groups. For more information, please click here.
|Take a 360° Virtual Tour|