Local history museum closes for renovations

COLUMBUS, Ga.-The Columbus Black History Museum has been faced with an ongoing struggle to keep their doors open.

They’ve recently received thousands of dollars from a congressman for renovations.

The Columbus Black History Museum is temporarily closed and hundreds of artifacts are being removed.

Dave Gillarm, the Museum’s Executive Director was looking to renovate the museum, when he removed an old bookshelf and saw the unexpected.

“It had extensive amount of termite damage. We checked some other areas and there was water damage in the building. So then we kind of put a hold on everything to see what else was going on in the building,” said Gillarm.

The artifacts have been moved into storage and Lakesha Stringer, a Curator, says they’ve taken extra precaution moving the artifacts.

Stringer said, “If anything was damaged I would be hurt but those are still material things and it’s about the story.”

Visitors to the museum were shocked to learn the news but supportive of the changes.

Bobby Sampson said, “If this is supposed to be a historical place that houses things that have happened in African American history in Columbus past. Where is it at?”

Carlos Smith said, “There are two types of races and then there is a rabbit race and the turtle race. Before they got started they were running the rabbit race and now that they’ve ran into these problems things are just moving slow.”

The Curator understands that some people will be disappointed, but says this is all part of growing pains.

“We’re going through a growth period and I’m excited to see the difference between what is now and what will be,” said Stringer.

Although the museum is facing challenges now they’re looking forward to a new beginning that will include new artifacts and exhibits.

The renovated museum is expected to be up and running before Thanksgiving.

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