ABOUT YOUR MUSEUM.....
The Laurens County Museum is a non-profit organization that actively investigates and communicates information regarding our important prehistoric and historic resources. We excel in presenting authentic views and experiences to diverse audiences in our county, state, nations, and world through research, preservation, and education.
The Laurens County Museum Association (LCMA) was organized in 2005 by people representing different parts of Laurens County. Led by James Gambrell, this small group met at the Laurens County Library in July of that year to discuss the possibility of establishing a museum to preserve items of importance to Laurens County history. Within one year, this group purchased the building located at 205 West Laurens Street, secured grant funding, renovated the building, and opened the Laurens County Museum.
In 2012, John D. Witherspoon donated beautiful, and quite large, bedroom furniture. It became immediately apparent that the pieces did not fit in the space the museum currently owned (link to picture of old building with bedroom). Mr. Witherspoon had a solution! He purchased our new building located directly across from the County Courthouse and donated it to the LCMA. He mentioned that he would like to see his family furniture displayed on Main Street in Laurens and now there would be an opportunity to do so. Although this building was large and prominently located, the museum association was taking on a huge renovation project. The museum located on West Laurens Street has remained open during this complex and expensive renovation project. In 2016, the Dominick Building (located adjacent to the Witherspoon Building) became available. The LCMA saw the opportunity to generate some rental income and purchased this building as well. The first floor currently houses Designs by D & Vendor Mall and the second and third floors are currently serving as museum workspace and an archaeology lab.
It has long been the philosophy of the LCMA not to take out loans or acquire debt. Because of this, the work at the Witherspoon Building has taken a long time to complete. Major renovations were necessary to make the building usable. Essentially, the museum had to be completely gutted when the LCMA acquired it (link to photo) and work was done when money was available. The LCMA is deeply indebted to the late Tony Harper. Sadly, Tony passed away in 2019, but before he died, he bequeathed $1,000,000.00 to the LCMA. This money was to be used to complete the work on the Witherspoon Building, redesign exhibits and move them to the new location. The work necessary at the Witherspoon Building has included the installation of an elevator, a sprinkler system, electrical work, HVAC installation, framing, drywall, painting, and flooring. This work has been completed and we held our grand opening on January 2, 2022.
MUSEUM BOARD, VOLUNTEERS AND STAFF
Meet your Staff, Board of Directors, Volunteers and Financial Supporters that help to make it all happen. The Museum is an independent non-profit organization, governed by a Board of Directors. And is a volunteer-fueled organization making what the Museum is and provides today possible. The Museum could not be possible without the generous helping hands of our Volunteers and the Community itself.
LAURENS COUNTY MUSEUM BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Teresa Noble - President
Charlotte Slice - Secretary
Edna McCarter - Treasurer
Sarah Jane Armstrong
Dr. Booker Ingram
Debbie W. Vaughn
Betty C. Walsh
CONNIE M. POST
PRIMARY MUSEUM STAFF
Front Row - Left to Right
Debbie W. Vaughn, Museum Board Member
Connie B. Post, Manager - Museum Administrative Operations
Teresa W. Nobel. Chairwoman, Museum Board
Back Row - Left to Right
Diane Smith, Coordinator - Manager, Museum Magnolia Room
Chris Pennington - Museum Artist / Designer
The Laurens County Museum would not be possible without the help of our many financial supporters. Below is a list of those supporters. Please join us in saying when you see them, "Thank you for all of their support and contributions".
Laurens County Museum Volunteers
Walter Allen - Alicia Gagin - Gene Ott - Phyllis Armstrong - James Gambrell - Gail Ricard - Sarah Jane Armstrong - Martha Garrison - Joyce Rambo - Jim Barton - Rachel Siviter - Libby Burroughs -
Dianna Hayden - Carole Senn - Cassandra Campbell - Julie Hill -
Ernie Segars - Sheila Candura - Dr. Booker Ingram - Julia Sermons - Dianne Culbertson - Becky Kirkland - Charlotte Slice - Connie Daniels Edna McCarter - Doris Taylor- Edie Davis - Jane McCarter -
Laura Dennie - Debbie Vaughn - David Donahue - Bonnie Hadden - Ruth McDaniel - Betty Ann Walsh - Fay Edge - Margaret McIntyre -
Anne & Jim Edwards - Jim Moore - Elma & Wilbert Morrison -
Linda Finley - Jane Nelson - Nancy Fowler - Larry Franks - Teresa Noble Greg Walls - Andy Shull – Lewis Matthews James & Susan Potts –
Joey Avery = Daria Chronic – Bob Link - Michael & Sonja Tucker