Day 201: Learn about black history in Thomas County

3 Aug

Credit: Jack Hadley Black History Museum

If you’re like me and not from the Deep South, then you might find it as strange as I do that museums around here tend to politely sidestep the area’s dark and disturbing history with slavery and mistreatment of African-Americans. Sadly, the best place to learn about this kind of history is in museums dedicated specifically just to black history. In Thomas County, just across the Georgia state line, there is a wonderful, quirky museum called the Jack Hadley Black History Museum. It started as one man’s personal collection and blossomed into a full-blown museum. The creator, Jack Hadley, is a talkative military veteran that will show you around the museum himself. Unlike the sparse, minimalist collections you might find at, say, the Smithsonian, Hadley’s collection still has the look of a crowded attic or garage. His focus is on black history in Thomas County. He has loads of old photos and memorabilia of the accomplishments of local African-Americans. But he doesn’t neglect black history in general, and notes some of the major accomplishments of African-Americans nationwide. One of the more memorable and shocking items in the museum was a pair of old, rusted chains used to contain slaves. I liked that the Jack Hadley Black History Museum confronted that issue head on rather than hiding from it. At $5 per person, it’s a bargain and I guarantee you will walk away having learned something new and hopefully met the delightful Hadley to boot.

Address: 214 Alexander Street (Thomasville, Georgia)

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One Response to “Day 201: Learn about black history in Thomas County”

  1. Alicia January 3, 2013 at 5:28 pm #

    The Black Archives are the largest display of African American and slavery artifacts in this region and one of the largest in the country. It is located right on FAMU’s campus in town.

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