The Southern Museum’s educational programs reinforce classroom learning by connecting historical information with actual artifacts. Experiences embrace thoughtful discussions, hands-on investigations, and playful explorations. History buffs will enjoy a tour or one of our Adult Outreach Presentations.

For more information, contact our education team at or 770-427-2117 ext 3173.

Tours & Workshops



The Southern Museum’s educational programs include offerings for everyone! The Mommy & Me preschool program, the Homeschool Workshop Series, and Sensory Friendly Afternoons are offered for children and families. For teachers and students, the Museum offers field trips, Junior Railroaders, Museum Explorers, classroom presentations, a Traveling Trunk, and virtual outreach. Tours and outreach presentations are offered for adults.

For Children & Families


Every Thursday from 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM

Explore the world around us through play! Create, experiment, investigate, and learn together. Each week has a different theme and fun new activities.

Mommy & Me has discovery and art tables from 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM. A short class at 10 AM, 11 AM, and 12 PM consists of storytime, a movement activity, and hands-on interactives associated with the weekly theme. The Jolley Education Center also offers a variety of free play opportunities.

The drop-in program is designed specifically for children ages 3 to 5 and their caregivers. The program is included in Museum admission and is free for Museum members. Registration is not required.



The second Wednesday of each month from 10 AM to 1 PM

Investigate STEAM-powered fun at our Homeschool Workshop! Discover new train-themed concepts and apply them to your own invention, art project, machine or game. Workshops are multidisciplinary and include hands-on projects, guided activities, tours and demonstrations.

The drop-in program goes from 10 AM to 1 PM. Every student is given a personalized introduction and detailed instructions before embarking on open-ended activities. A guided presentation or tour every half hour delves deeper into the topic of each workshop.

Recommended for elementary students ages 5 to 12 and their caregivers. It is included in Museum admission and free for Museum members. Registration is not required.


The last Tuesday of each month from 2pm to 5pm

Join us as the Museum is transformed into a sensory-friendly environment. We welcome visitors with Autism Spectrum Disorder, sensory processing issues, or special needs to explore the Museum at their own pace. All ages are welcome. It is included in Museum admission and free for Museum members.


For Teachers & Students


Grades 4 through 12  |  Adapted to Grade Level
Meets GSE Standards

The Southern Museum of Civil War & Locomotive History offers dynamic field trip options that meet Georgia state curriculum standards, incorporate highly interactive exhibits, and feature lesson plans for teachers and students. All options are tailored for age appropriateness and can be customized to meet specific requirements.

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Field Trip Options & GSE Standards



Recommended for Ages PreK and K

This tour is great for our youngest visitors. Explore the museum and learn how transportation has changed and evolved over the years. Students will hunt our Railroads: Lifelines of the Civil War exhibit for the different modes of transportation used during the conflict, act out how steam trains were built over a hundred years ago, and get a chance to investigate the General to see how it worked. Wrap up your tour with a matching game and storytime that builds on the tour’s themes. Do not forget playtime in the Jolley Education Center!


Recommended for Grades 1 through 3 or for groups with a wide range of ages

For those groups with students not quite ready for our older tours, Museum Explorers allows students to experience everything that the Museum has to offer. Students will explore our Railroads: Lifelines of the Civil War exhibit to learn about a Civil War soldier’s experience, examine the molding and casting process that was used to create steam trains during the early twentieth century, and delve into the Great Locomotive Chase and the General! They can also watch our short film about the Great Locomotive Chase, investigate replica soldier items from the Civil War with hands-on activities, and play in our Jolley Education Center.



Soldiers & Civilians
Grades 4 through 12

Invite an expert to your class! Explore the experiences of a Civil War soldier through hands-on learning. We bring authentic reproduction soldier gear, copies of Civil War letters from our archives, and historic photographs to your classroom as we facilitate a 30 to 45 minute lesson about soldier life. We make it easy to create a memorable day for your students!

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Virtual outreach

Virtual outreach brings the Museum directly to your classroom. It features a live stream session with a Museum educator dressed as a Civil War soldier alongside reproduction items from the period. The program is designed to be flexible so it can address topics based on where the students currently are in their studies. A taped tour of the Museum’s galleries can supplement the experience.



Civil War at Home

Looking for an innovative way to teach the Civil War? Check out our Traveling Trunk! You will receive ten comprehensive lesson plans, adaptable for elementary or middle school students, along with all the supporting materials you need. The trunk includes reproduction soldier gear and letters, newspaper clippings, photographs, and other primary sources to investigate. The lesson plans cover all the GSE Civil War standards and emphasize the role of women, African Americans, and local individuals. Use these materials to supplement your existing lesson plans, inject some new energy into your classroom, and create a memorable educational experience for your students.

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For Adult History Buffs

History buffs will appreciate learning more about the Great Locomotive Chase and the Glover Machine Works, while others will enjoy leisurely browsing historical artifacts like clothing, firearms, and personal effects. And no one will want to miss the General, the steam locomotive stolen during one of the most daring episodes of the Civil War!


For groups of of 10 to 200 adults
(1.5 – 2 hours depending on group size)
Available Tuesday - Saturday
$8 per adult, guided (10 person minimum)

General Museum Tour
Enjoy a guided tour of the Smithsonian-affiliated Southern Museum with one of our knowledgeable staff members.

Your visit will include our three permanent exhibits: The Great Locomotive Chase (including the world famous General steam locomotive), Railroads: Lifelines of the Civil War, and Glover Machine Works: Casting a New South. A viewing of a movie about the Great Locomotive Chase in our theater is also included.


adult outreach presentations

Schedule a visit by one of our Museum educators for an engaging history presentation, complete with Q&A at the end of the presentation. Cost is $75 per presentation, plus mileage if outside a 20 mile radius of the Museum.

The Great Locomotive Chase
Bring the Great Locomotive Chase to life! Your group will discover behind-the-scenes details about the raid, the men involved in the event, and its aftermath. This talk highlights an interesting local story from the Civil War, provides insight into the decisions that were made that fateful day, and explores how the outcome could have changed with different decisions.

Life as a Civil War Soldier
Explore what the daily life was like on the front lines during the Civil War. A Museum educator will give this presentation dressed as a Civil War solider, accompanied by reproduction items that help highlight life at camp. This presentation also explores the reasons people fought during the war and how perspectives changed from 1861 to 1865.

The Glover Machine Works: Casting of a New South
Discover how trains were built!  This talk highlights the Glover Machine Works and how the South was rebuilt after the war. As a small steam locomotive shop in Marietta, Georgia, the Glover Machine Works provides insight into the industrialization of the South after the war and how the United States evolved economically during the early twentieth century. This presentation brings to light an important part of local history and an understanding of how the South went from an agrarian to an industrial society.

The Jolley Education Center

educational Interactives

The Jolley Education Center offers engaging and interactive learning stations for people of all ages to explore. Tap out and receive messages in Morse Code, operate a diesel train simulator, watch an animated video on rail safety, read books, and play with puzzles.


georgia w. pierce pre-k area

A designated area for younger children features a climb and crawl foam train set and other age-appropriate activities.

Pre KImage