Franklin Historical Society

The mission of the Franklin Historical Society is to seek to preserve and foster appreciation of local history and to maintain living museums for educational and community enrichment.



Upcoming Events



On April First 2017, the Franklin Historical Society has invited Ben Franklin to join us at the Franklin Public Library 9151 W. Loomis Rd. in the Fadrow Room starting at noon as a special guest. Ben would like to see how things are going in our city. Another special guest will be Mayor Steve Olson who will give Ben a state of the city report.

Terry Kutz will play the role of Ben Franklin, and Mayor Olson as himself. Ben will speak about many aspects of his life including his role in developing libraries across our country.This is open to the general public as a free family event. After the program we will serve snacks and refreshments to our guests. Ben will join us for this to answer any questions you might have. Come join us, it will be fun!



After this program, the annual meeting of the Franklin Historical Society will be held for our members.



Barn Museum Ground Breaking Ceremony



On Wednesday December 7th the Franklin Historical Society took a very important step for the building of our Barn Museum with a ground breaking ceremony. Plans are in place to begin construction in the spring of 2017 with the goal of a grand opening on the Fourth of July during the City of Franklin’s Civic Celebration.


St. Peters Chapel Christmas Service 2016




For the past 14 years the Franklin Historical Society as part of our Christmas program has had 3 non-denominational services in our St. Peters Chapel where you could experience a service with kerosene lamps and a pump organ. Rev. Roger Boesch pictured here has done all of these services. St. Peters Chapel was originally located on S. 68th St. just north of Rawson Ave. and moved to the FHS historic village. The congregation was of German descent. Rev. Boesch’s service features a German theme where you feel a sense of going back in time being connected to Franklin’s past.


2016 FHS Children’s Christmas Program



The Franklin Historical Society as part of our school program presents a special children’ s Christmas program. The children come to our Whelan School a week or two prior to decorate the Christmas tree and have a rehearsal. Their program includes reading stories of Christmas, readings of poetry, and singing Christmas carols.
During the school year 3rd and 4th grade children from Franklin and some surrounding communities come to Whelan School for a one day field trip where they are instructed by our teachers as if they were students in 1908.
After their class work is done they tour our other buildings. Once the barn museum is completed it will be an important addition to the school program.


2016 City of Franklin Tree Lighting Ceremony


The Franklin Historical Society hosted our annual Christmas program on December 3rd. The program featured many different Christmas celebrations. This is the City of Franklin’s tree lighting ceremony.    


2016 FHS Town Hall Christmas Program

During the Franklin Historical Society’s Christmas program our guests were invited to join us in Franklin’s Town Hall to share food, drink, music and song of Christmas. As you can see we had a packed house.
Early town hall meetings had been held in houses and other buildings and it was in November, 1884, that the decision was made to build a Town Hall at the cost of about $900.00.
Town meetings had begun as early as 1842. It was April 6, 1886, when the first town meeting was held in the new town hall.
In 1956, as the town became a city, the building ceased to be used as the Town Hall. The building was used by the Engineering Department, the Police Department and continued as the Justice Court until 1970.
The building was moved to the FHS village in 1975 as a living museum.


Sheehan-Godsell Cabin 2016 FHS Christmas Program


Pictured here  during the Franklin Historical Society’s Christmas program is the Sheehan-Godsell Cabin the first European structure in Franklin. The cabin is representative of the lives of the early settlers of Franklin.