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Dorothy Molter Museum

Closed Now: 10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Open today: 10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Review Highlights
A hidden gem

This little museum of small cabins in the woods tells the fascinating story of a Chicago-raised... read more

Reviewed September 14, 2018
Sara M
Springfield, Oregon
What a fascinating woman, I had no idea!

When I read the description of the museum and Dorothy Molter, I was assuming late 1800's or early... read more

Reviewed September 11, 2018
Griswold, Connecticut
Read all 131 reviews
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Certificate of Excellence
Traveler Overview
  • Excellent64%
  • Very good25%
  • Average9%
  • Poor2%
  • Terrible0%
Travelers talk about
“root beer”(67 reviews)
“amazing woman”(6 reviews)
“gift shop”(12 reviews)
Closed Now
Hours Today: 10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
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Ely, MN
+1 218-365-4451
Most Helpful Positive Review
Reviewed June 8, 2014

I really did not know if this museum would be worth the $6.50 admission (seniors and AAA members receive a discount making admission only $5.50), but it certainly was. I was there on a rainy day so I was the only visitor on my tour....More

2  Thank Joan W
Most Helpful Critical Review
Reviewed October 21, 2014

Dorothy Molter was the Root Beer Lady of the BWCA. It is implied that the root beer sold by museum gift shop is Dorothy's recipe. It is not! Dorothy did not use high fructose corn syrup! I lived in Ely when Dorothy was still alive,...More

10  Thank IngaMari
Reviews (131)
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All reviews root beer amazing woman gift shop guided tour six pack interesting history boundary waters nature trail self guided several buildings original recipe actual cabin from chicago interpretive center wilderness area young woman great stop
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1 - 10 of 131 reviews
Reviewed September 14, 2018

This little museum of small cabins in the woods tells the fascinating story of a Chicago-raised nurse-turned-wilderness caretaker who lived for decades, alone, in the Boundary Waters canoe area, fighting the federal government for the right to live out her life there. The buildings are...More

Thank Sara M
Reviewed September 11, 2018

When I read the description of the museum and Dorothy Molter, I was assuming late 1800's or early 1900's and was wrong. Dorothy Molter was much more contemporary, which makes her story that much more interesting. The museum has recreated what her cabin was like,...More

Thank cjyap
Reviewed September 2, 2018 via mobile

The Dorothy Molter museum is much more interesting than suggested by the subject description of the story of the"root beer lady". Dorothy Molter deserves a museum to tell the tale of a feisty woman who chose a career (nursing) in the 1920s over domesticity and...More

Thank AlyJD
Reviewed September 1, 2018 via mobile

They did Dorothy right by making this museum dedicated to her. If you have heard of the root beer lady who lived on an island in knife lake and make root beer for the paddlers you need to stop by and check out this museum.

Thank Brad S
Reviewed August 20, 2018

Small museum with several buildings, tells the story of a nurse turned wilderness pioneer of sorts. Guides are informative and funny. Molter's reconstructed cabin is filled with her possessions , photos and interesting artifacts. Fact: see made home made root beer which is still sold...More

Thank intents2
Reviewed August 9, 2018

Took the guided tour through the cabins. The tour guide was a young woman who was very informative and passionate. She provided interesting anecdotes and presented the information in a fun way. Very well done. Afterward we spent time wandering around the grounds and then...More

Thank CaseyMo921
Reviewed August 4, 2018 via mobile

How interesting to hear some of the history of the area. She was an amazing woman of her time. I enjoyed having my teenage daughter hear about a woman going against the grain of her time. I loved the displays, the gift store, and the...More

1  Thank Allisonspring
Reviewed July 25, 2018

We did not go in the museum, but followed the trail around the site. It provided much information on the woman who lived here for so many years. A very interesting perspective into the lives of the early settlers of the area. A number of...More

Thank Virginia S
Reviewed July 23, 2018

The tour starts with a visit to the gift shop for a ticket and plenty of Kwitchubellakin items (Quit your belly aching), apparently a frequent saying of Dorothy. A brief video in the first tour building is very interesting and includes Dorothy being interviewed. Her...More

1  Thank goneagain2
Reviewed July 20, 2018

Oh my gosh, a must see, bring the kids too! Dorothy is THE Ely legend and has a lot to share with us, her story's with pictures, her cabin and all she used to function on a daily basis.

1  Thank Carrie L
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