James-Younger Gang Bank Raid
The Northfield Historical Society’s main exhibition tells the story of Northfield’s most famous day, September 7, 1876. The exhibit dives into Northfield’s beginnings, fostering a sense of the land and the people who settled the town. It provides an introduction to the notorious James-Younger Gang and the series of events at the First National Bank of Northfield that led Northfield’s citizens to rise up and defend itself. Additionally, it highlights Northfield citizens of all ages who witnessed the event and the aftermath including the town’s heroes who are still celebrated to this day.
Features of the display include the bank’s ledger book, one of the single shot rifles used to defend the town, reprinted photographs of the outlaws taken at death or capture, as well as firearms, spurs, and a saddle taken from an outlaw’s horse. Eyewitness accounts are peppered throughout the exhibit and the bank site itself, the location of the actual robbery and murder of cashier Joseph Lee Heywood, proves to be a chilling reminder of Northfield’s most famous day.
Fran Hall: Tin Can Traveler
In 1963, Northfield photographer Fran Hall and his wife, Tallie, joined the Airstream caravan going around the world. Hall was hired as the official photographer of the journey. For fourteen months, the group traveled across Asia and Europe seeing the sights and acting as unofficial ambassadors to the world. Through Hall’s amazing photography, the letters he wrote back to Northfield friends, and his 2005 memoir, this exhibit follows the journey he took. It describes in his own words the good and the bad of the trip and Hall’s own reactions to everything going on around him. It was a ‘trip of a million lifetimes.’
Tin Can Traveler will open to the public in April 2022 and will be on display through December 2023.