Stans Homestead and the Stans Garden-Park
House tours by appointment.
Located on the grounds of the Scott County Historical Society - Stans Museum is the Dutch Colonial Revival boyhood home of Maurice Stans. Hubert Stans, Maurice’s father, was a house painter and paperhanger by trade and he built this home for his family in 1908. Hubert was also a musician and local band director. Maurice's mother was Mathilda (Nyssen) Stans and her family operated the Shakopee Brewery until 1920. The Stans family was well-known in the community.
The one-and-a-half story house features a cross-gambrel roof. This was a popular pattern of home styles obtained from plan book companies. There is an open front porch, wood-frame siding, and cedar shingles. The entire house was furnished in cooperation with Maurice Stans and the society, which tried to obtain items as close as possible to the ones Maurice remembered growing up with in the house.
The front door enters onto a small foyer. Here visitors can see the simplicity of the house's layout. There is a front parlor, a center dining room with a small bedroom off the dining room, and a rear kitchen. The open archway to the front parlor features a “curtain” made of beads fashioned from rolled up wallpaper strips. Maurice remembered his mother making such a curtain and museum staff replicated it. Stained glass windows in the foyer, front parlor, and dining room are original to the house. Wallpaper and paint was recreated from original design styles. Most of the ceilings are also wallpapered, which was common in the late 19th to early 20th century. The rooms feature unique wood flooring whose pieces create decorative herringbone elements around the perimeters of each room and the dining room's bay window.
The dining room features a three-bay window. Currently this room contains the original dining table, chairs, sideboard, and china cabinet owned by Hubert and Mathilda Stans. Their daughter, Loretta Stans Gellenbeck, inherited the dining room set and eventually passed it on to her daughter Genie Van Well. Genie and her husband Bill graciously donated the set to the SCHS for placement inside the house in 2011. The SCHS is grateful to have the set once again in its original home! The space also features a foot-treadle sewing machine, a working Victrola, and a wooden crank-style telephone.
The small bedroom off the dining room is simply furnished and was used by Hubert and Mathilda Stan. The door leading to the second story, where Maurice and his sister Loretta slept, is off the dining room. The upstairs bedrooms were not insulated until after the children left home. Maurice remembers waking up to frost on his blankets, and running to the kitchen to warm up on cold winter mornings.
The kitchen features a green-and-white enamel Sanico brand cook stove made by the Shakopee Stove Company. A stand-alone cupboard, also painted green, has open doors that display early cooking utensils. The walls feature a unique way of tiling, which entails a form being pressed into the plaster to create grooves that resemble individual tiles. The museum staff painted the separate sections to give the appearance of wainscoted tiles. The walls are painted a cheery butter yellow, based on original paint colors. The kitchen includes a wood cook stove, dry sink, and ice box.
The kitchen door leads to a plank walkway, which would have originally lead to the chicken coop. Now the walkway connects the house with the museum and leads to the landscaped gardens.
The gardens are surrounded by a low hedge, anchored by flowing crab trees, and contain a mix of perennial and annual flowers. In the spring visitors can enjoy the scent of lilacs, and the beautiful color of tulips. There is something blooming at the Stans Garden from May through September.
The gardens form a park in the center of the downtown area, welcoming all to stop and enjoy this rejuvenated corner of town.