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Heritage Room

Visit the Heritage Room to research genealogy, local & Georgia history, and more!

Heritage Room Hours

  • Wednesday 10:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
  • Thursday 1:00 - 8:00 p.m.
  • Friday 9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
  • Saturday 9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
  • Sunday 2:00 - 6:00 p.m.

Please call (706-613-3650 ext 350) or email the heritage staff (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) if you have any questions.

Heritage Room News

July Events and Classes

The Poppy Lady

July 16, 2015


Heritage Conference Room

The Local History Book Club is a reading group that meets on the third Thursday of each month to discuss that month's assigned reading.  This month we will discuss The Poppy Lady: Moina Belle Michael and Her Tribute to Veterans, by Barbara Elizabeth Walsh (author) and Layne Johnson (illustrator). Yes, you guessed it: this is a picture book! School-age children are welcome to attend.

When American soldiers entered World War I, Moina Belle Michael, a schoolteacher from Athens, Georgia, knew she had to act. Some of the soldiers were her students and friends. Almost single-handedly, Moina worked to establish the red poppy as the symbol to honor and remember soldiers. And she devoted the rest of her life to making sure the symbol would last forever. Thanks to her hard work, that symbol remains strong today. Author Barbara Elizabeth Walsh and artist Layne Johnson worked with experts, primary documents, and Moina's great-nieces to better understand Moina's determination to honor the war veterans.  To learn more about The Poppy Lady, click here.

Copies of the book are available for circulation.


GALILEO for Genealogists 

Tuesday, July 28 

6:00-8:00 pm 

2nd Floor Computer Lab

This class will explore the wonderful resources available to Georgia genealogists for free via GALILEO, an online Library portal to authoritative, subscription-only information that isn’t available through free search engines or web directories.  

Registration is required.  Please click here to register.

June Events and Classes

Getting Started with Genealogy 

Tuesday, June 2 

6:00 pm

Heritage Conference Room

This class will help you get started with your family research. This is an introductory genealogy class.

Registration is required. Please click here to reserve your spot.


The Athens Historical Society Presents:

Flower Power: How Moina Michael's Poppies Raised Millions for Veterans

Sunday, June 14


Please join us on Sunday, June 14th, Flag Day, for a discussion and celebration of Moina Belle Michael, who was inspired by the John McCrae poem now known as "In Flanders Field" to make the poppy an international symbol of memorial for those lost to the Great War. 

Tom Michael, the great-grandson of Moina Michael's brother, Willie Michael, will present a history of the impact of Moina Michael's efforts to make the poppy a symbol of remembrance, and information about the plan to commemorate Moina Michael and her work for veterans in 2018, the centennial of the end of World War I. 

Readings of the poem that inspired Moina, and her poem in response, "We Shall Keep the Faith," as read by Allen Rowell and Gay McCommons of Town and Gown Players.  Please join us afterward for light refreshments and conversation.

This program is free and open to the public.


The Migrant's Experience (Class 1 of 2)

Tuesday, June 16 

6:00 pm

Multipurpose Room A

Mary Bondurant Warren will cover the experiences of those who moved within the U.S.: hunting for a new home and better prospects in the colonies.  

Registration is required. Please click here to reserve your spot.


Local History Book Club: The Worst Hard Time

Wednesday, June 17, 2015


Multipurpose Room C

In honor of the Dust Bowl exhibit Dust, Drought and Dreams Gone Dry, the Local History Book Club will be joining forces with Talking About Books and the Last Monday Book Discussion Group to host a joint book club discussing Timothy Egan's The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl. The book won the 2006 National Book Award.

The dust storms that terrorized America's High Plain in the darkest years of the Depression were like nothing ever seen before or since, and the stories of the people that held on have never been fully told. Pulitzer-Prize winning New York Time journalist and author Timothy Egan follows a half-dozen families and their communities through the rise and fall of the region, going from sod homes to new framed houses to huddling in basement with the windows sealed by damp sheets in a futile effort to keep the dust out. He follows their desperate attempts to carry on through blinding black blizzards, crop failure, and the deaths of loved ones. Drawing on the voices of those who stayed and survived--those who, now in their eighties and nineties, will soon carry their memories to the grave--Egan tells a story of endurance and heroism against the backdrop of the Great Depression.

Copies of the book are available for circulation.


The Immigrant Experience, (Class 2 of 2) 

Tuesday, June 23 

6:00 pm

Multipurpose Room A

Mary Bondurant Warren will pose the questions: Why did U.S. immigrants leave the security of the Old World for the uncertainty of the New? Where did immigrants go, and how?

Registration is required. Please click here to reserve your spot.

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