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McFarland Historical Society | Larson House Museum
 

Larson House Museum

Larson House History

The Larson House is a Queen Anne style Victorian home built in 1898 by E.N. Edwards.  Edwards sold it to Tollef Olson.  Upon Olson’s death, John O. Larson purchased this upscale home in McFarland and his family lived there for nearly 80 years.  Most of John’s family treasured the house for all its special memories but unfortunately, the house stood empty for 20 years until purchased by the McFarland Historical Society in 2012.  It had become a dreadful eyesore and the community rallied around the project to restore it to its former glory.  Local contractors, donors and volunteers gave time, money and materials to repair and restore this McFarland landmark on the corner of Bashford and Exchange Streets.  Donors contributed to the “Buy A Board” campaign – enought to reside the entire house with cedar siding milled on the edges to closely resemble the original boards.  Others in the community came forward to purchase naming rights to the various rooms.  They honored family members with strong connections to McFarland and their histories are on the walls in the rooms.  One of John Larson’s granddaughters provided her memories of Grandpa John’s home and how each room was furnished, thus providing the general decorating scheme.  Virtually every furnishing in the house was donated by generous people who cherish the house.  The Larson House Museum Grand Opening was in May of 2014.  It is open Memorial Day and every Sunday from 1 to 4 PM through September.  It is also open for special tours by appointment and for private parties.

Open House

The McFarland Historical Society’s Museum, Norwegian Log Cabin and Farm Display at 5814 Main Street, and the Larson House Museum at 6003 Exchange Street are open to the public on Sunday afternoons from 1 to 4 pm from Memorial Day through September.  Covid vaccinations are required for those 12 and up and masks are required for children 5 to 11.  Admittance is free and donations are encouraged.  For tours by special appointment, contact Dale Marsden at 608-838-3992 or Jane Licht at 608-838-8178.