Columbus State University Archives and Special Collections

Browse Exhibits (11 total)

At a Crossroads: MidTown, Inc. 2005-2015

MidTown, Inc., a community development organization in Columbus Georgia, celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2015. This exhibit is a digital summary of the student’s research includes a timeline of MidTown Inc., oral histories and transcripts conducted with people involved with its creation, and demographic maps of Midtown's age, race/ethnicity and education levels.

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Bibb City: Collected Lives from a Mill Town

A rich variety of interpretive materials on Bibb City, a former company-owned mill village in west central Georgia. This exhibit includes an oral history play, text and images from the history exhibit, "in character" walking tour scripts, a printable self-guided community tour, and a downloadable audio tour.

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Carson McCullers

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The Mary Mercer and Margaret Sullivan collections are two of several collections documenting the inspiring life of Carson McCullers. Born in Columbus, Georgia on February 19, 1917, Lula Carson Smith, more commonly known as Carson McCullers, is an important figure in Columbus’ history. Her legacy continues on today through her works and the artifacts found in these collections.

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Carver Heights History Harvest: Columbus' First Post WWII Segregated Suburb

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The Carver Heights subdivision was the first post-World War II segregated neighborhood in Columbus, Ga, located just outside the boundaries of the city. Carver Heights become an engine in the production of the city's black middle class. 

In fall 2018, students from CSU's Department of History and Geography welcomed residents and homeowners to the Carver Heights History Harvest held at the Mildred Terry Library. We collected oral histories and photographs from community members to create this digital humanities project. The project includes interviews, images, timelines, and maps to help share the story of the Carver Heights community.

During this course we were asked to prepare a short article on the history of the community for the Georgia State Historic Preservation Office's journal Reflections. It was published in November 2018 a few weeks before the end of our class. 

With the continued support of community members we hope to prepare a nomination for the National Register of Historic Districts. Registration recognizes the central role this community played in the history of the city. Being on the National Register does not place any restrictions on home owners or their homes, it is designed to help recognize and celebrate the neighborhood and its impact on the city.


Digging in the Archives


Explore the CSU Archives and discover how to conduct research using primary sources.

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In Transition: The Visionary Art Environment of Pasaquan


This exhibit captures the transition of the visionary art environment of Pasaquan as it shifts from the Pasaquan Preservation Society to the Kohler Foundation. It includes a collection of resources to inform and contextualize Pasaquan, the life of Eddie Owens Martin, and the preservation and conservation processes.

J. Kyle Spencer Map Collection


The Spencer Map Collection documents the emergence and evolution of the American colonies, specifically Georgia, and the formation of the United States as a whole, ranging from the late 1500s to the late 1800s.

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Liberia Migration Project

This interdisciplinary, digital humanities project is the culmination of two geography and history courses at Columbus State University in fall 2019 and spring 2020. 

Southern Confederacy and Memorialization

In fall 2020, Columbus State University's Department of History and Geography hosted a virtual speaker series entitlted "Southern Confederacy and Memorialization" featuring three of its professors. This website hosts the zoom video of those presentations. 

Walking Through Black History

African Americans built Columbus, while working for the full rights of citizenship.

Located in the rich agricultural region known as the Black Belt, urban slavery thrived in this antebellum, industrialized river town (established in 1827). Trained as skilled artisans and industrial workers, by 1860 37% of the city’s population was enslaved. During Reconstruction (the post-Civil War period between 1865 and 1871), the federally appointed Freedmen’s Bureau negotiated wages and provided legal assistance to challenge violence against former slaves across the South. African Americans built institutions to worship, educate, develop political leadership and empower their community. However, by 1908 African Americans were again completely disenfranchised, having lost their voting rights. Racial segregation in public facilities established through a series of “Jim Crow” laws and customs, enshrined the region’s ideology of white supremacy.

From the 1870s to the 1950s, thousands of rural African Americans migrated to Columbus to built a better life. After World War II, black soldiers returned from fighting fascism abroad to demand freedom at home. In the post-war era, the city’s first African American suburb of Carver Heights was built. Men and women led the fight for civil rights in the city and across the state. By the 1970s, African Americans held elected local offices and enjoyed desegregated public facilities.