Heard County Historical Center & Museum
Known as the “Old Jail”-this historic building was the Heard County Jail and sheriff’s residence from 1912 to 1964. The Heard County Historical Society (established 1979) and the Heard County Historical Center & Museum (est. 1999) now uses the jail as a museum to encourage and promote the history of Heard County. The museum offers an archive of historical records and a local history museum which includes exhibits related to the history of area communities. Exhibits also highlight major historic events, businesses, and notable resident of the county. The “Old Jail” was listed on the National Register of Historical Places in 1981.
Backstory and Context
The “Old Jail” was built in 1912 and it has become a local heritage museum in Heard County, GA. The Heard County Historical Society was established in 1979 with the purpose to encourage and promote the restoration and preservation the local heritage, artifacts and relics of Heard County. The Society has chosen the ‘Old Jail” building in to store and display their collections.
The restoration and preservation of the jail was conducted under the control of Old Jail Restoration Committee and the Heard County Commissioner. The fund for restoration and preservation was established by Heard County Historical Society and the Callaway Foundation of LaGrange. After the restoration, the “Old Jail” has become the Heard County Historical Center and Museum.
The Heard County Historical Society continues to look for and collect artifacts, book or historical records to enrich the museum. To prove for the succession and effort of the Society; the featured exhibits of the notable resident of the county such as Mahayley Lancaster. Lancaster was a fortune-teller, lawyer, political activist, schoolteacher, and self-proclaimed "oracle of the ages," who became a West Georgia legend in the first half of the twentieth century.