Contact: Kara O’Keeffe

Prairie du Chien, WI – Beginning July 1, 2020, nine of the Wisconsin Historical Society’s historic sites and museums will begin to open for in-person reservation-only special tours and programs.

For the southwest sites, Villa Louis (Prairie du Chien) and Stonefield (Cassville) will offer reservation-only special tours and programs while Pendarvis (Mineral Point) and First Capitol (Belmont) will remain closed at this time.

The programs offered at the sites will be limited in capacity for the safety of guests and staff.

Villa Louis will offer Mansion tours and Behind the Scenes Tours July through October as well as two Breakfast in a Victorian Kitchen programs in October. Villa Louis will also offer Riverfront History Walking Tours. During this 90-minute guided walking tour guests will explore the many-layered history of western Wisconisn’s oldest town.

Stonefield Historic Site will offer self-guided tours July through September. During these self-guided tours guests can explore the State Agriculture Museum and select buildings in the 1900’s village.

The public can still hike the Merry Christmas Mine Hill at Pendarvis and walk the grounds at First Capitol. The buildings will remain closed at this time.

To register for any of the tours or programs at Villa Louis or Stonefield guests can call the site and visit each website for dates of events and more information.

Each historic site and museum will also implement enhanced health and safety measures that adhere to the Badger Bounce Back – State Government Edition. Policies will prioritize an abundance of caution and will vary according to each site’s unique risk factors. At each location, the following guidelines will be followed:

  • Guests and staff will be asked to adhere to proper social distancing regulations, and it is highly recommended that face masks are worn while interacting
  • The number of visitors will be limited to ensure proper social distancing
  • All facilities will adhere to significantly increased daily cleaning and sanitation requirements and there will be cleaning stations in each building
  • Guests and staff who are exhibiting symptoms or think they may have been exposed to COVID-19 are asked to stay home

Visit for up-to-date information on current restrictions, guest policies, and additional guidelines that are specific to each location.

We greatly appreciate the flexibility and patience shown by Wisconsin Historical Society members, guests, supporters, and staff as we navigate this unprecedented circumstance together, and we look forward to this opportunity to reconnect with guests.

About the Wisconsin Historical Society

The Wisconsin Historical Society, founded in 1846, ranks as one of the largest, most active and most diversified state historical societies in the nation. As both a state agency and a private membership organization, its mission is to help people connect to the past by collecting, preserving and sharing stories. The Wisconsin Historical Society serves millions of people every year through a wide range of sites, programs and services. For more information, visit

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