Museums are often “put off” until another day but I encourage you to do otherwise. The Foxfire Museum is a living record of a community both past and present. It is a museum of a unique American culture, the Appalachian Community. The way it started is as fascinating as what you can see today.
Don’t Miss The Foxfire Museum
The Foxfire Museum is located in Mountain City, Georgia. This is just outside of Dillard, GA and Clayton, GA. Our family has visited Dillard, GA numerous times, but like many we head to the campgrounds, the mountain hikes, waterfalls, and seasonal produce. Sadly, the idea of a museum gets pushed aside. Why? Well, I think we forget or don’t realize that seeing history in a new way can often refresh our appreciation for what we love about our life today. This year we went to the Foxfire Museum to experience the past and present.
The Way It Started
In the late 60’s, a wise teacher listened to his students and encouraged them to make their learning meaningful. They decided to start a magazine that would tell the history and heritage of their Appalachian community. They gathered stories and facts from their families and neighbors. The students named the magazine Foxfire which is a glow-in-the-dark fungus that grows in the Rabun-Gap area in the summer months. The magazine is still in print today but you may be more familiar with the Foxfire book series that has shared the skills and lifestyle of the Southern Appalachia for generations. Today, the interactive museum continues to inspire and keep a culture alive.
This spark of an idea turned into a phenomenon of education and living history, exploring how our past contributes to who we are and what we can become – how the past illuminates our present and inspires imagination.https://www.foxfire.org/about-foxfire/#history
The Foxfire Museum Today
The Foxfire Museum is located in the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest. The land was purchased with royalties from the Foxfire books in 1974Foxfire history https://www.foxfire.org/about-foxfire/#history. There are 20+ buildings and outdoor treasures to experience on a shady trail. You will experience life as it was from the 1820s to the 1940s. On most days you will find artisans on the property demonstrating their crafts. During our visit we met two weavers and the blacksmith. They also have a free app for you to download. This adds another dimension to your walking experience of this immersive museum.
10 Things to Know Before You Go
- Wear walking or hiking shoes. The path is shady and can be muddy or dusty.
- There is an admission fee of $10/adult. Be sure to check the website for changes.
- Make sure to get a paper map when you check in.
- Some artisans sell their crafts. Be ready with cash for an easy purchase.
- Strike up conversation with the artisans. They are full of fun facts and experience.
- There is a gift shop that sells Foxfire merchandise and handmade crafts by local artisans. There are a lot of great gift ideas here!
- Charge your phone and download the app- this really adds to the experience.
- There are restrooms available at the entrance.
- Allow for at least 2 hours so that you can experience every part to its fullest.
- When you get to the chapel, RING THE BELL! I did not realize they actually encourage this so I missed my chance.
Guides and Gifts
Next time you travel and see a curious museum, stop and explore. You will be surprised at what you find inside. I am thankful we finally stopped in Mountain City. Where are you headed? I hope you’ll share your best life here with me!
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