Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Marietta's "Gone With the Wind" Museum

When I took my Aunt Jane to lunch in Marietta for her birthday last week, what she did not know was that as soon as we were through eating, we were going to walk out of the restaurant, turn the corner, and enjoy a trip to the "Gone With the Wind" museum she had been asking to visit. There are three sites any GWTW fan visiting Georgia really needs to see: the Margaret Mitchell House in Atlanta, the Road to Tara Museum in Jonesboro, and this museum, which opened in 2003 and features the personal GWTW collection of Dr. Christopher Sullivan of Akron, Ohio.

Unlike most women on the planet not named Kardashian, Aunt Jane *loves* to have her picture taken, so I was not surprised when she paused at several places in the museum and requested a photo, including this one with one of the many GWTW reproduction gowns on display. While flash photography is not allowed, I'm rather surprised that any photography is allowed, and I was grateful for the opportunity to record our visit!

The museum is located in an old cotton warehouse near some train tracks, so you may feel a little rumble when a train goes by.

Most of you probably know that Hattie McDaniel, GWTW's "Mammy," was the first black actress to win an Oscar. What you may not know — and indeed, I did not know myself until last week — was that Hattie McDaniel "was named after me," according to Aunt Jane, whose last name is McDaniel. Who knew? (She wanted her picture taken with photos of the other Miss McDaniel.)

While the museum has a number of reproduction garments on display, they also have the original "honeymoon gown" Scarlett wore on her honeymoon with Rhett, and it is quite impressive when you see it live!

I haven't watched the movie in a while, but I never noticed before all that tedious cutwork embroidery on the sleeves. Great balls of fire, that took a lot of work!

The museum also has some original chairs used in the movie, including these. At far left is the famous red gown Scarlett wore (my favorite of her costumes in the movie; go big or go home, I say!).

Here's Aunt Jane with a replica of Tara donated to the museum. A sign read, "This hand sculpted likeness of Tara was constructed by Michael Thrower of Independence, Missouri and is made entirely from wood, cardboard, and Legos. It is dedicated to the memory of our dear friends Cammie King Conlon (Bonnie Blue) and Fred Crane (Brent Tarleton), and in honor of the 'Windies' their devoted fans."

I realize GWTW has many fans for both the book and the movie, but I am first and foremost a fan of Margaret Mitchell, the author, featured above. Her story is fascinating, and I remain impressed with how graciously she managed to live her life following the huge amount of publicity that came her way after her book was a blockbuster hit. She was also a very generous woman, and only in recent years has it come to light that she used her fortune to, among other things, fund scholarships for black medical students.

I did not know until I saw it in the museum that there was a Margaret Mitchell doll. Now this, I would like to have!

I always enjoy seeing the many foreign editions of GWTW that were published. I first saw some of these years ago when my friend the late Herb Bridges, a world-famous collector of GWTW memorabilia and author of many GWTW books, loaned them to our local historical society for an exhibit. I do miss Herb and all the GWTW "gossip" he supplied me with! As I prepared to leave the museum with Aunt Jane, who was busy shopping for a souvenir T-shirt, I couldn't help thinking it was a pity there was nothing tea-related that would justify my posting about the GWTW museum on a tea blog. And then I saw ...

Scarlett O'Hara Tea! So Dean & Deluca packaged this in 1997? Wish I'd known! And thanks for coming along on my little journey with Jane to the GWTW Museum!


  1. Joy B and I need to do a road trip to Marietta and go visit here. It is on my bucket list, being a fan of both MM and GWTW. Thanks so much for all these lovely photos and the stories...

  2. Thank you for taking us along on your visit to the Gone With the Wind Museum. It's on my list of places to visit, and sooner rather than later. I just received an e-mail a couple of days ago about a new book that's just been released "Saving Tara Project" and I going to order a copy. I don't know how long the restoration project will take, but I'd sure like to see it when it's done. Maybe Dean and Deluca will bring their Scarlett O'Hara tea back for the 75th Anniversary. Should all of us tea lovers and Gone With the Wind book and movie lovers write them and ask them to do so???

  3. Yes, Sandy of Traveling Bells and I do need to visit this spot. I know right where it is, having grown up only a few miles from there. (Phyllis, do come visit Marietta, I could meet you on that trip!) When I started reading this post, I thought "It is a shame that I grew up there and never went to this museum" but then I read that it opened in 2003, by which time I was no longer living in Marietta. That makes me feel a little better! I do love the book, I have read it countless times. Glad you and Aunt Jane enjoyed the museum.

  4. What a fun adventure! Will have to put this on our 'must see' list! Thanks for sharing - I enjoyed the gowns, the beautiful wooden chair, and Aunt Jane's smiling face. What a great surprise for her!

  5. I've never been to the GWTW museum. Thanks for sharing all those great photos.

  6. What a fun trip! We have a similar museum here in East Texas called Scarlett O'Hardy's Gone With the Wind Museum. It's located in the quaint historic town of Jefferson. As many times as I've visited Jefferson for their Candlelight Christmas Home Tour or the Spring Pilgrimage, I've never visited the museum. I'll have to do that next time I go. Also, in Fort Worth, the Texas Civil War Museum has on display right now the green velvet hat with gold fringe that Scarlett wore in the movie.

  7. What fun! Thank you for sharing this.

  8. Oh I just loved this little tour and who would have guessed your aunt was named after someone famous. You can always say "I spy tea" because you find it in the most amazing places. Good for you!

  9. Thanks for sharing your visit with us. I would love to visit some day.

  10. Thank you for this wonderful review, Angela - looks like a good place to visit. Your photos are great!

    Gone With the Wind is one of my all time favorite books. I first read it when I was on summer vacation with my best friend Diane and her family - we drove up from Miami to their log cabin 'The Timbers' in North Florida.

    When I couldn't put the book down (and was reading by flashlight in the upper loft bedroom, Diane's mother Mrs. Perkins called out, 'alright Miss Scarlett - time to put that book down and get some sleep!') For the rest of that summer, my nickname was Scarlett! I was about 13 years old and Gone With the Wind is still one of my favorites...

    I must visit that museum - thanks for the review, Joanie


Thanks so much for taking time to leave a comment! It makes my day to hear from readers!