Saturday, April 19, 2014

Traveling Back In Time - A Visit To Historical Marietta, GA

*This post contains affiliate links. Please see my Disclosure Page for details.

Marietta, GA was established in 1834 and is located along the Chattahoochee river and historic Kennesaw Mountain foothills. This amazing city provides visitors and residents with a great selection of attractions, festivals & annual events, outdoor concerts, recreational activities, shopping and more! You will be swept away with the traditional Southern charm, hospitality, and history of this quaint, modern city.

A moms review:
Marietta was heavily damaged during Sherman's march through Georgia in 1864, but it still remains the proud home to numerous historic properties, five historic districts, and two Nationally Registered Historic landmarks. So as you can imagine there are lots of fabulous learning opportunities in this city for families. From December-April three of the historic museums located in Marietta come together to offer homeschoolers a special tour called "Home Front to Battle Front."

The three museums you can visit during the homeschool day are:
-The Root House and Garden Museum
-Gone With The Wind Museum
-Marietta Museum of History

At each museum you will learn about Marietta and it's role during the Civil War. The Heritage Passport is $12 per person and can be purchased at the Marietta Visitor's Bureau.

Here are more details on what we experienced at each of the museums:

Gone With The Wind Museum:
We started our tour at the Gone With The Wind Museum. Honestly I wasn't sure the kids would get much out of this museum since they had never read the book or seen the movie, but to my surprise they enjoyed our visit and learned quite a bit too (and not just about the book). The museum is located in the circa 1880 Old Thomas Warehouse building and houses an extensive collection of Gone with the Wind memorabilia.

"Step back in time to rustle of petticoats, cotton fields and plantations and the smell of gunpowder!" 

We had a fabulous guided tour of the museum which took us about an hour to get through. Through our knowledgeable tour guide and the amazing artifacts on display we learned about Margaret Mitchell and the impact she had on Atlanta, the Pulitzer Prize winning novel, Academy Award winning movie Gone With The Wind, life during the Civil War and African American history. Some of the museum highlights are original Bengaline honeymoon gown worn by Vivien Leigh as Scarlett O'Hara in the movie, several of Margaret Michell's personal volumes of the novel, an educational display dedicated to the African American cast members, foreign editions of the novel, rare press and publicity books, costume pieces, actor contracts, scripts, promotional pieces including foreign film posters, premiere programs, conceptual artworks, advertisements and collectibles. Of course Gwyn was in awe of the gorgeous dresses throughout the museum...what little girl wouldn't? And Rowyn was totally digging the Lego plantation house!

If you are in search of Gone With The Wind souvenirs be sure to check out the gift shop. Special events are offered monthly, check their event calendar for details. Group rates are available.

Marietta Museum of History
Our next stop was the Marietta Museum of History. This museum has been open since 1996 and the galleries and exhibits are located on the 2nd floor of the historic cotton warehouse that was built in 1845. There are 4 galleries which include general history, home life, military and a changing special exhibit. There were several hands on learning experiences including cranking old fashioned music players (with staff member assistance), holding a Civil War rifle, playing with a switchboard, pretend playing in a Civil War hospital tent and more. We also learned about the historic building and it's progression through the 1800's. In 1855 it became the Fletcher House Hotel and during the Civil War it was used as a hospital and morgue....there are even some stories that it is haunted.  In one of the rooms there is a recreation of the 1860's hotel room where Andrews' Raiders stayed while plotting the theft of The General! There is so much to learn at this museum and all of the artifacts are amazing. They even have a fabulous educational guide available.

In 2010 the museum also opened an Aviation Wing (located at different location) which tells the exciting and important story of Aviation to Marietta and Cobb County. 

Special events and Museum Mice Tours (children ages 3-5) are offered monthly, check their event calendar for details. Group rates are available! There is also a great gift shop with period costumes and toys! 

The Root House and Garden Museum
Our final stop for the day was the Root House which was built in 1845. This home is located two blocks from its original location and is one of the oldest surviving frame houses in Marietta. Inside the museum you will get a glimpse of what the home life of a a middle class merchant and his family was like. Hannah and William Root were one of Marietta's earliest merchants and first druggist, and the first merchant to receive a shipment of goods on the Western and Atlantic Railroad.

Once we got inside we were greeted by a docent dressed in a period costume. She first led us to the parlour room which had some fantastic furniture and a working pipe organ. Next we went to the dining room to see first hand what it would have been like to have a family dinner in the 1800's. Afterwards we headed upstairs to check out the one and only bedroom. We learned about what their mattress's and pillows were made of, how they had to pull the ropes to tighten their mattress frame and where they went to the bathroom. We even got to see their nightgowns. Curious where the phrase, "good night sleep tight, don't let the bed bugs bit" comes from? We learned that too! When we came back downstairs we headed to the back of the house where there was information about the home and the family as well as artifacts that were found inside the home and buried on the original grounds. We also got check out how an 1800's house frame was constructed. And the children made, "secrets."

Next we headed out to kitchen to see a working 1850's cookstove. On kitchen porch there were some 1800's toys and kitchen tools that the children were able to play with. There were marbles, checkers, a whisk, etc. Inside the kitchen we got to experience the sights, sounds and smells of an 1800's kitchen, it was like traveling back in time. The most interesting fact that I learned was why they kept a canary in the kitchen.

Outside Gwyn swept the yard and both kids got to try out the well. On our way out we took a stroll through the garden which contains a traditional Southern flower, herb and vegetable garden as well as mock beehives.

Special events are offered several times a year, check their event calendar for details. There is a small onsite gift shop with historic books and gifts.

I highly recommend all three of these museums even if you cannot attend a homeschool day program. Each of these museums provides amazing history lessons for the entire family. The docents and staff members were readily available for guided tours or to answer any questions we had.

Video of our fun day:

Extra details:
-The museums are stroller friendly and handicap accessible.
-Food and drinks may NOT be taken into the museums.
-Allow yourself about 3-4 hours to see all of the museums.
-There are a couple of free parking lots, but if it's a busy day you may have to pay for parking.

All 3 museums are easily accessible from this address.
1 Depot Street
Marietta, GA 30060

When to visit:
Homeschool day is from 10 am - 3 pm on select days from December - April.

Adults, children, seniors - $12.00 per person

*Individual prices for museums vary outside of homeschool day programming visit their websites for additional details.

Links to follow:
-Gone With The Wind Museum Facebook
Gone With The Wind Museum Twitter
-Marietta Museum of History Facebook
-Marietta Museum of History Twitter
-Root House and Garden Museum Facebook
-Root House and Garden Museum Twitter

*Prices indicated in post are subject to change.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for stopping by! Please check the follow up box so you can receive my replies.

Designed By: Wacky Jacqui's Designs