The Columbus Museum has been an AASLH member since 1979.

The Columbus Museum (Columbus, GA) Calendar of Events November- December 2016

NOTE: Additional events may be added. For the most updated information on events and programs offered at the Columbus Museum, and for online pre-registration (optional or required for some programs) visit the Museum’s website: or like the museum on Facebook.



Second Saturday

Saturday, November 14 | 10 a.m. – Noon | FREE!

Guest artist Yadira Padilla returns for a quest to explore the importance of maps through mixed media.  Participants will construct three-dimensional maps and create a miniature representation of the world.  Story time begins at 11 a.m. and will feature Follow The Map! by Scot Ritchie. This program is held in conjunction with the Once Collected, Always Cherished exhibit.


Teen Third Sundays

Sunday, November 15 | 2- 4 p.m. | FREE!

Hosted by the Museum’s Teen Advisory Group (TAG-Team)

Join the archaeologists from the Paleo to Present exhibit as they introduce students to archaeology.  Teens will learn about excavation and preservation methods, how artifacts are treated in the laboratory, and the evolution of technology in this field. Students will be able to handle and inspect artifacts as part of this event.

Contact: the Education Department,, for more information.


Paleo to Present Exhibit Opening Reception

Tuesday, November 17 | 6-8 p.m. |FREE!

Excavation and Preservation: A Discussion more than a Century of Archaeological Investigation and Preservation Efforts on the Fort Benning Military Reservation

Featuring: Michael Ecks, archaeologist; David Proctor, Traditional Cultural Advisor for the Muscogee (Creek) Nation; and George Steuber, Deputy to the Garrison Commander, Fort Benning.

Moderator: Rebecca Bush, Curator of History, The Columbus Museum

Three panelists will discuss past and current issues in the fields of archaeology and preservation.  Topics will include historic events following the relocation of the Southeastern American Indians from the area following the Indian Removal Act of 1830.

This event is held in conjunction with the Museum’s “Paleo to Present” exhibit and the Spencer Environmental Lecture Series. Contact: for more information.


Third Thursday: Sing, Sing Sing & Swing

Thursday, November 19 | 6-8 p.m. | FREE!

Featuring the Columbus Cavaliers

Jump and jive to music from the 1940s with our featured big band, the Columbus Cavaliers. This evening will explore the popular music of World War II and artifacts in the Paleo to Present exhibition.


Romantic Spirits: Nineteenth-century Paintings of the South from the Johnson Collection exhibition opens to the public

Sunday, November 22 | 1 p.m. | FREE!

Romantic Spirits: Nineteenth-century Paintings of the South from the Johnson Collection studies the ideas of the Romantic Movement as expressed by artists from or who worked in the South. Thirty-eight landscape, history, genre, portrait, and still-life paintings, including works by Thomas Sully, Washington Allston, Charles Bird King, Junius Brutus Stearns, William Dickinson Washington, and Robert Walter Weir, will be on view in this major exhibition on loan from the Johnson Collection. Founded in 2002 by George Dean Johnson, Jr. and Susan (Susu) Phifer of Spartanburg, South Carolina, the Johnson Collection “seeks to advance interest in the pivotal role that art of the South plays in the larger context of American Art and to contribute to the canon of art historical literature.” More than 800 works are in the collection.



Lunch and Lecture: Picturing the South: Exploring Regional Images in the Nineteenth Century

Friday, December 4 | Noon-1 p.m. | FREE!

Featuring:  Sarah Bowman, Assistant Professor of History, Columbus State University

Bowman will lead a discussion on 19th century historical contexts that shaped the paintings on display in the Romantic Spirits exhibition. In an era when the character of the South was a question of enduring national debate, representing the South became a central concern for both Southerners and for those who visited the region.  This talk will examine what it meant in the nineteenth century for a painter to imbue the Southern landscape with romanticism, to portray slavery, and to depict the Civil War and its aftermath.

Lunch & Lecture programs are free and no reservation is required.  If you are interested in purchasing a $10 lunch, please order by contacting the Education Department at by the Monday prior to each program. This program is held in conjunction with the “Romantic Spirits” exhibition.


Young Art Patrons’ Holiday Social

Wednesday, December 9 | 6 p.m.

The Lofts of Swift Mill

Featuring: Bo Bartlett and Betsy Eby, Najee Dorsey, and Fred and Cathy Fussell

Join us for holiday cheer as we celebrate the season with an evening among art enthusiasts. Meet the featured artists, enjoy studio tours, and indulge in small bites and seasonal beverages. This is a program of The Columbus Museum’s Young Art Patrons.

Register by December 2; visit or contact Laura Narr,, 706.748.2562 ext. 544. $10 Young Art Patron member/$15 future member. Price includes hors d’oeuvres plus complimentary wine and beer tastings courtesy of B&B Beverage.


Second Saturday

Saturday, December 12 | 10 a.m.-Noon | FREE!

Join guest artist Meghan Lacey for a special art-making activity inspired by the Romantic Spirits exhibit.  Participants will discover artists who used nature as their inspiration and will create their own still life collage.  After your visit to the art cart, go on a gallery scavenger hunt and join us for story time featuring Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert.


Meet Me @ The Museum

Tuesday, December 15 | 12:20-12:40 p.m. | FREE!

Presenter: Christy Barlow, Academic Programs Coordinator

Take a different route for lunch! Learn more about individual artworks and historical objects in the Museum’s collection with a 20 minute in-depth discovery led by Museum Staff and Docents.  Join us to explore Teapot, ca. 1895-1900 by George Ohr and Sea, Earth & Sky Vase, ca. 1935 by Shearwater Pottery.


Teen Glassblowing Workshop

Saturday, December 19 | 9 a.m.-Noon & 2-4 p.m.

Join guest instructor Kelly Robertson as he brings his portable hot shop to the Museum and takes teen participants on a step-by-step process to create their own blown glass ornaments!  Sessions are hourly and space is limited.

Register by December 11; Contact: Education Department, for more information. $5 deposit required.





Troublemakers and Trailblazers

On view through February 7, 2016

Legacy Gallery

This exhibition presents the more colorful characters of the Chattahoochee Valley, people who were criticized or ostracized for being outside the mainstream or going against dominant power structures.  Race, class, gender, and sexuality will be topics of discussion, as well as what it means to “do the right thing”.  And overarching theme includes how we perceive trouble and now these troublemakers are sometimes, but not always, seen differently through the long lens of history. Featured individuals include author Carson McCullers, musician Ma Rainey, anti-corruption lawyer Albert Patterson, Civil Rights activist Dr. Thomas Brewer, suffragette H. Augusta Howard, and journalists Julian and Julia Harris. Millworkers on strike, the Nancy Harts all-women militia in LaGrange, groundbreaking female architects, and local Unionists during the Civil War will also be highlighted.


Once Collected, Always Cherished: Highlights from the George Greene and J. Kyle Spencer Collections
On view through January 10, 2016

Galleria Cases

The Columbus Museum recently acquired several items from the collection of the late Russell County Circuit Court Judge George Greene. An avid collector of local historical artifacts for decades, Greene served on the Museum’s History Committee and applied a keen eye to capturing the rich heritage of the Chattahoochee Valley. Chief among these is an extensive archive related to the musician “Blind Tom” Wiggins, as well as several items related to the Civil War in Columbus. The Museum is proud to unveil these 50 pieces as new and cherished additions to our collection.

The exhibition also features maps from the J. Kyle Spencer Map Collection at the Columbus State University Archives. Spencer collected maps documenting the emergence and evolution of the American colonies, specifically Georgia, for more than 30 years. The history of European settlement, American Indian communities and their forced removal, and the growth of Georgia counties can be traced through these unusual and colorful maps.


Photo from the Museum's Collection

Photo from the Museum’s Collection

Discovering the Chattahoochee Valley: Silk Paintings by René Shoemaker
On view through July 2016

Artist René Shoemaker has transformed the Galleria with an exhibition of large-scale silk paintings, on view until the July 2016. Shoemaker, a long-time resident of Athens, Georgia, creates hand-painted silk works that celebrate the distinctive character of a city or place. For her exhibition at The Columbus Museum, the artist has created site-specific works about the Chattahoochee Valley after visiting here and immersing herself in its sights, sounds, and smells and making preliminary sketches of buildings, spaces, and people. Shoemaker solicited responses from the Columbus-area community through social media to decide which buildings and locations could be used in the paintings. The silk paintings on view in the exhibition thus truly capture the characteristics that make the Chattahoochee Valley unique.

Shoemaker explains that the project was “about discovering what makes the city and valley unique to its citizens and visitors. What patterns in the landscape are distinguishable, and how can I tease out the beauty of these sites great and small? What memories are held by the people there; what locations do they like to visit the most? Where are the neighborhoods they drive through without really seeing, and where do they like to meet with friends? What do the children remember as they grow up in Columbus?”