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116 Pearl Street Then

116 Pearl Street Then
1920's Photo of Pearl Street

116 Pearl Street Today

116 Pearl Street Today
Our Museum!

Welcome To The Minden, Louisiana's Dorcheat Museum Blog

Thank you for visiting the Dorcheat Historical Association and Museum Blog. The Dorcheat Historical Museum is the only museum inside the city limits of Minden, Louisiana. The museum opened June 10th, 2008. Admission Free with donations welcomed. Our hours are, Tuesday - Friday from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m., closed for lunch from 1 p.m. - 2 p.m., open again from 2 p.m. - 4 p.m. Saturday we are closed but open by appointment for special showings and meetings. We would like to invite you to visit our location at 116 Pearl Street in Minden, Louisiana. We look forward to sharing our history with you. For more information please contact museum director Schelley Brown Francis at 318-377-3002 or 318-423-0192.

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The Dorcheat Historical Association Museum, Inc.

This Minden, Louisiana Webster Parish Muesum is Funded in part by a grant from the Webster Parish Convention and Visitors Commission.

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Hours of Operation & Map

Hours of Operation & Map

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Help Us Keep History Alive In Webster Parish

In return for your support, you will receive not only a tax deduction, but also, invitations to all museum activities. Please give every consideration to helping with this endeavor. Be a part of Webster Parish history by becoming a proud supporter of the Webster Parish Dorcheat Historical Association and Museum.

All contributions may be mailed to:

Dorcheat Historical Association Museum
PO Box 1094

Minden, Louisiana 71058.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

We Made Minden's Top Ten For 2008

An eventful year in Minden, Webster
Written by Press-Herald Staff
Wednesday, 31 December 2008
Over the next two days, the Press-Herald will recap the 10 biggest news stories of 2008 in Webster Parish.As follows are numbers 10 through 6.

Dorcheat Historical Museum opens
The greatly-anticipated Dorcheat Historical Museum, located at 116 Pearl Street, opened to the public on June 10.
The museum houses relics of historical interest and significance collected from all areas of Webster Parish as well as family heirlooms, which have been passed down through the generations. Many of the items have been donated by life-long residents of Minden.
Museum tours start with the history of Webster Parish, beginning with a Native American exhibit. They then progress down a timeline depicting progressions seen and made during the life of Webster Parish.
The Museum began hosting “Night for the Museum”, an exciting and entertaining evening featuring guest speakers who recall stories of Minden’s past. Speakers for this monthly event have included George Turner, Dr. Steve Kirkikis and Marilyn Miller.
The highly attended events are held at Christopher’s, located at 615 Main Street and include refreshments.Museum Director Schelley Brown said Night for the Museum allows for the recording of these important stories for future generations.

Friday, December 5, 2008

2009 Season for “Night for the Museum” will be filled with History

Click to enlarge picturesJohn Stillmon Willis, Jr. To Be The First Speaker of 2009

The Dorcheat Historical Association Museum, Inc announces the first “Night for the Museum” of 2009. These events were such a huge success in 2008 with 9 speakers’ total for the year. Each event was recorded and made into a DVD. These DVDs are a part of the fundraising efforts of the always expanding and progressing new museum.
Museum director Schelley Brown stated, “Last year with our June opening we wanted to get the word out about the museum and what better way to do that than to tell our parish history from people that have lived it or whose grandparents experienced it.” The events have included a wide range of subjects from the Civil War – the 1940’s and 50’s recreation at Hunter’s Playhouse. Each event was attended by 150-200 guests. Many of these people traveled a great distance to attend the monthly events.
Monday January 12th, 2009, Mr. John S. Willis will be the first guest speaker for the 2009 season. Mr. Willis a longtime Webster Parish citizen grew up in the Doyline area of the parish. John Stillmon Willis, Jr. was born on the Willis farm south of Doyline to Ada Kennon Willis and John Stillmon Willis, Sr. in June of 1919. Ada Willis would succumb to along illness when John was just 4 years old. John was then raised by his grandparents John Gladden and Anna Willis. He graduated with a degree in Agronomy from LSU. He farmed until Pearl Harbor. He spent four years in the service, the later three years in the Army Air Corps. His combat service was as a B-17 Pilot out of Deephen-Greene Airbase with the 452nd Bomb Group in England. The average casualty rate for the Bomb Groups was a staggering 77% with his unit having an 85% casualty rate. Willis flew amazingly over 30 missions. After leaving the service John spent 20 years in the family lumber business. The next 20 years many remember Mr. Willis and his late wife Mrs. Lillian Life Willis as a part of the Webb Hardware family. These two played important parts in the fabric of our community. They retired in 1988. Lillian died in 2006. Mr. Willis will be speaking on his early childhood days around Lake Bistineau as well as his amazing stories of WWII and life in our surrounding communities. Ms. Brown commented, “I know Mr. Willis is going to be a wonderful first speaker for 2009. We are so excited that he has agreed to do this for us. He has wonderful stories and I know that everyone is going to enjoy listening to him.”
Speakers are already lined up for an exciting and history filled 2009 schedule. The events will be held at Christopher’s located at 615 Main Street in Minden on the 2nd Monday of the month. Doors open around 5:30 refreshments are served at 6:00 p.m. with speakers to begin at 6:30. No admission is charged for the events but donations to the museum are welcomed. For more information on the museum you can visit the web site at or call Schelley Brown at 318-423-0192.