“Wish that you could come over and see our house,” wrote colonists Irene and Oscar Beylund to friends in Wisconsin after their first Christmas in Alaska. Today the Palmer Historical Society issues the same invitation to you.
In 1994, a group of individuals in Palmer organized the Colony House Preservation Project Committee. Its goal – was to restore a colony house to its 1935 -1945 appearance. While this committee was not a part of the Palmer Historical Society, some of our members participated in the project. In 1998 the project was turned over to the Palmer Historical Society for ownership, responsibility, watchful keeping, and operation.
Located at 316 E. Elmwood Ave, near the Palmer Museum of History and Art/Visitors Center and within Palmer’s Historic District, the Colony House Museum and outbuildings display rural life in the Matanuska Valley during the heyday of the Colony.
While originally the home of Oscar and Irene Beylund on tract 94, this house, one of five styles available, reflects an average colonist family’s home.
The Matanuska Colony, the largest New Deal Resettlement project, involved moving 203 families from the Midwest to the Matanuska Valley to establish a farming community. An event of national interest in 1935, continues to fascinate the public and is the subject of the PBS film documentary, Alaska Far Away.
Colony Christmas (December) and Colony Days (June) are celebrations our whole town takes part in – Be sure to stop by the Colony House Museum for our Open House and special activities.
Colony House Museum Hours:
June 1 – August 31
12:00-4:00 pm Wednesday – Saturday
Off Season Tours are available-
Please give us a call at 907-745-1935
We are located in the Historic District
316 E Elmwood Ave
Palmer, AK 99645