History Museums

Pay homage to the past at Atlanta’s history museums

Atlanta played a decisive role in American history, from the Civil War to the civil rights movement. Events that unfolded here built character and forever changed the city and America’s heritage. Stroll through historic homes and enchanting gardens, learn about global human rights and the civil rights movement, travel back to prehistoric times when dinosaurs walked the earth or view works of art from around the world.

The city’s place in time is cemented at history museums and cultural institutions that pay homage to the events, faces and places that helped shape our culture.

The capital city of the Southeast is a city of the future with strong ties to its past. The Atlanta History Center is a 33-acre destination in Buckhead that is home to one of the Southeast’s largest history museums, the Atlanta History Museum. The center also features one of America’s largest historic treasures, The Battle of Atlanta Cyclorama, in addition to award-winning exhibitions, enchanting gardens and two historic houses. Swan House is the museum’s headquarters and was one of many Georgia set locations used during the filming of the movie The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.

Travel around the world and back in time as you discover live animals, amazing places, ancient fossils, prehistoric cultures and new scientific discoveries at Fernbank Museum. Get a look at one of the largest known dinosaurs ever to walk the earth, a giant sloth, shells from the Georgia coast and sites around the world, and much more. Then explore 75 acres of new outdoor nature adventures. WildWoods and Fernbank Forest combine to highlight the natural world through immersive trails, educational programming, hands-on exhibits and beautiful scenery.

From his humble upbringing to becoming the 39th President of the United States to founding the The Carter Center, the life and achievements of Jimmy Carter are fascinating. Inside the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library & Museum are 40 million pages, 1 million photographs, 2.2 million feet of film, and 2,500 hours of video that offer a close-up view of the modern American Presidency. Immersive exhibitions, a life-size replica of the Oval Office, an Interactive Map Table, beautiful gifts from world leaders, a research library and more deliver insights into one of America’s most beloved civil servants and humanitarians. 

On Emory’s Atlanta campus sits the Michael C. Carlos Museum, a dynamic interdisciplinary center that cultivates literacy in the arts and fosters an understanding of diverse religions and civilizations. The museum features artwork from ancient Egypt, Nubia, and the Near East; Greece and Rome; the Americas; Africa; and Asia, as well as a collection of works on paper from the Renaissance to the present. For more than 100 years, this museum has inspired faculty, students and visitors through world-class permanent collections and special exhibitions, innovative programming and one-of-a-kind opportunities to engage with art firsthand. 

Georgia’s Official Transportation History Museum is in a suburb of Atlanta. Southeastern Railway Museum features about 90 items of rolling stock including historic Pullman cars and classic steam and diesel locomotives that will delight visitors of all ages. What’s more, a variety of educational programs for young fans, summer railway camp and special event days like “Trains, Trucks and Tractors” and “Train or Treat” are hosted here. Guests are wowed by the caboose, locomotives, passenger and freight cars, and other train memorabilia on display on this 35-acre site in Duluth, Georgia.

To never forget, we must look back and remember. The William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum brings the lessons of the Holocaust and the history of the Southern Jewish experience alive through permanent, traveling and rotating exhibitions. The narrative of this dark time in human history is put forth in the voices of those who survived and made new lives in Atlanta through the Absence of Humanity: The Holocaust Years, 1933-1945. Local architect and Holocaust survivor Ben Hirsch designed the permanent exhibit, which features historic photographs, personal memorabilia, family documents and videotaped interviews with Atlanta-area survivors.

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Atlanta History Center

Founded in 1926, the Atlanta History Center is an all-inclusive thirty-three-acre destination featuring the Atlanta…

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Emory | Decatur | Stone…

Fernbank Museum

Experience a world of adventure filled with dinosaurs, live animals, cultural artifacts, hands-on science explorations…

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King Center, The


Established in 1968 by Coretta Scott King, The King Center is the official, living memorial…

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