St. Olaf Telephone Co.We  will unveil our new exhibit, “The History of Telephones in Northfield,” Thursday, Feb. 23, with a reception from 6 to 8 p.m. at NHS, 408 Division Street, Northfield.

The exhibit, sponsored and provided by the St. Olaf College Telephone Company, will chronicle the history of telecommunications in Northfield and Dundas. The multi-media display will use photos, audio, movies and old equipment — including antique phones and switchboards — to tell this fascinating story. You will learn of the first phone hookup in 1880 between the Ames Mill in Northfield and the Dundas Mill. You will be able to use an actual crank telephone and manipulate the switchboard installed by the Archer House in 1960. You will be able to see and feel how telephone cable evolved into the supple, fiber optic connection that today transmits voices at the speed of light.

The exhibit gives us a comprehensive look at a utility that helped transform the community.  This is a truly fascinating story of how technology changed the commercial and social patterns of our community. It reminds us of how people continuously adapt to new inventions and changing times.”

The exhibit will run through June 22. The Northfield Historical Society is open Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday 10 to 5 p.m. and Sunday noon to 4 p.m.

The exhibit was also sponsored by Northfield News and KYMN Radio.