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Vesterheim

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Address: 523 W. Water Street, P.O. Box 379, Decorah, IA 52101
Phone Number: 563-382-9681
Description: Through 24,000 artifacts and 12 historic buildings, Vesterheim...
Through 24,000 artifacts and 12 historic buildings, Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum shares the most comprehensive collection of Norwegian-American artifacts in the world and is a national center for folk-art classes.
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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  • 46
    Excellent
  • 18
    Very good
  • 3
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    Terrible
Beautiful with a great gift shop

The museum is located in beautiful downtown Decorah. They host set and traveling displays of Norwegian-American heritage pieces. The collection is quite impressive for a museum... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed May 19, 2015
dr_reagan
,
Decorah, IA
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67 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Decorah, IA
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
15 attraction reviews
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2015 NEW

The museum is located in beautiful downtown Decorah. They host set and traveling displays of Norwegian-American heritage pieces. The collection is quite impressive for a museum dedicated to one ethnicity.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Top Contributor
285 reviews 285 reviews
52 attraction reviews
245 helpful votes 245 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 2, 2015

The Vesterheim provides insight into the stubborn Norwegian personality. The battle of this culture against the sea and the elements comes through loud and clear. A wonderful experience not to be missed.

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Eden Prairie
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
3 attraction reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 19, 2015

We loved the history of this museum. The displays are thoughtfully done and labeled. Highly recommend a visit!

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Des Moines, Iowa
Top Contributor
670 reviews 670 reviews
484 attraction reviews
194 helpful votes 194 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 15, 2015

Much of the contents of this Norwegian museum is applicable to many of the immigrants to America. Leaving friends, family, and a familiar country, they packed their trunks which are on display. With their clothes on display. Lines that are on display. Toys that are on display. And came to a new country where they made more of the same... More 

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Maplewood, MN
Top Contributor
69 reviews 69 reviews
7 attraction reviews
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 6, 2015

I've been to Decorah many times over the years but never visited the Vesterheim until this trip thinking it would be primarily of interest to those of Scandinavian decent and I don't even like lefse! JoAn did a wonderful providing an introduction to the museum and its history and made a recommendation as to how I should proceed with my... More 

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Wisconsin
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 17, 2015

This museum is a must see in a quiet and friendly little town. The artifacts and displays are incredibly and the staff is helpful and friendly. I would suggest going in the summer time when the out buildings are open for viewing.

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Dubuque, Iowa
Top Contributor
188 reviews 188 reviews
126 attraction reviews
101 helpful votes 101 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 13, 2015

On a weekend trip through northeastern Iowa in the fall (best leaf color in the Midwest), be sure after seeing the Bily Clock Museum in nearby Spillville to continue your cultural tour with a stop at Vesterheim. You do not need to be Norwegian to appreciate the art and craftsmanship of these settlers to the area in the 1800s. The... More 

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des moines
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
7 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2015

We visited Decorah for a couple of days in October 2014. This town has so many attractions for a small town that we did not have time to get to the Vesterheim Museum. But we did visit the gift shop and explored the exterior of the several historic buildings on the grounds. They have been very well restored and are... More 

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San Diego, California, United States
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2015

Great Norwegian museum. Four floors of the displays, plus an outdoor section that we did not brave on this trip because of the cold temperatures.

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Denver, Colorado
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
6 attraction reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2014

Most all our families have relatives who immigrated to the U.S. Some of those stories have survived and been passed along through successive generations. While concentrating on Norwegian immigrants, Vesterheim creates the overall picture of what it must have been like to leave home and family in the "old country" and embark on a rugged move to a new country... More 

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