As the Bartow History Museum nears the transition to its new home in the 1869 Bartow County Courthouse, staff, members and volunteers reflect on the great success the Museum has seen over the years and anxiously await what the future will hold.
The current Museum location, at 13 North Wall Street, will close exhibit areas on Thursday, July 1. The Museum Gift Shop will remain open.
"Since opening the Bartow History Museum in 1987, we have educated numerous visitors on the life of Bartow County since the early 1800s," said Trey Gaines, director of the Bartow History Museum. "Our mission here at the museum is to preserve Bartow County history, educate a diverse community of students and visitors about its unique heritage and to celebrate its sense of place through exhibits, programs and outreach activities presented in an engaging and pleasant manner. We have been fortunate to have the staff and volunteers assist in meeting this mission for more than two decades, and look forward to continuing to fulfill our mission when we move into our new home in the 1869 Courthouse."
To celebrate the location that has been home of the Bartow History Museum for the last 15 years, the Museum will host Opening the Door to the Future, a farewell reception, Tuesday, June 29, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. People may drop in to say farewell to the building they have known as the History Museum for so many years, as well as honor the many donors, volunteers and staff for their great work at this location.
In addition to saying goodbye to the museum, visitors may also consider making a contribution to the capital campaign. Over the years, the museum has offered an array of curriculum-based school program, workshops for adults and teachers, lectures, archives research, summer day camps, Traveling Trunk programs and more to help preserve and present Bartow County's rich history which spans more than 200 years -- since the Cherokee were the area's primary residents.
Current exhibitions cover Cherokee life and the early settlers to the area, the Civil War, farming and industry and several well known people from Bartow County's past. In order to continue these programs, as well as add additional programming and exhibitions currently being planned by the museum staff, additional funds are greatly needed.
"It's exciting to look back at all that we have accomplished over the years, and the staff, member and volunteers are excited about the Opening the Door to the Future event which will allow all of Bartow County residents to come join us as we reflect on the past and look towards the future. Many people have visited our museum over the years -- including over 11,000 people this past year -- and I just hope those who have been and experienced the importance of what we are doing here at the museum will join us to say farewell and consider making a contribution to insure our future success," Gaines said.
Visitors are encouraged to stop by the Museum at any time during the day Tuesday, June 29, to say goodbye and make an investment in the future of the Museum; however, the official Opening the Door to the Future event will take place from 5 to 7 p.m., with an official closing toast conducted by Gaines at 6 p.m.
Those wishing to play a role in the collection and preservation of Bartow County history for future generations are asked to consider making a contribution to the Bartow History Museum by contacting Gaines at 770-382-3818, ext. 6286 or firstname.lastname@example.org.