Category Archives: Exhibits

Georgia Archives Month 2014

ga-archives-supportOctober is Georgia Archives Month! During this month we celebrate the value of Georgia’s historical records, share how they enrich our lives, and acknowledge the people who preserve and maintain them, such as those of us here on the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta History and Archives Committee! 

Our committee is comprised completely of volunteers- adults and older Girl Scouts- who understand how important it is to keep a detailed record and collection of Atlanta’s Girl Scouting past.* We want Girl Scouts of today to feel connected to the Girl Scouts of yesterday and realize just where it is that they come from. “Honor the Past, Celebrate the Future” and “Girl Scouts Make History” are our mottoes here at the GSGATL Archives. Juliette Gordon Low herself understood how important our past is to our future when she said, “The work of today is the history of tomorrow and we are its makers.”

Juliette’s birthday, October 31st, is known as Founder’s Day. There is a display currently up at the Switzer Library’s (formerly Central Library) Georgia Room in Marietta, Georgia that celebrates Georgia Archives Month and Girl Scouts together! If you’re in the Marietta area, swing by and take a look! Learn a little about the history of Cobb County and Greater Atlanta Girl Scouting and see some of the items that the Georgia Room has in its collection. The display will be up until November 1st.

"Celebrating Georgia Archives Month with Girl Scouts!" on display in Marietta's Switzer Library

“Celebrating Georgia Archives Month with Girl Scouts!” on display in Marietta’s Switzer Library

*If you are interested in volunteering in the GSGATL Archives or donating any materials to us, please contact us at GirlScoutArchivesAtlanta@gmail.com! We always appreciate any help and can’t wait to hear from you!

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Girl Scout Dolls Through The Years

Dolls are a hugely popular collectible item and Girl Scout dolls are certainly no exception. In 1920, the first known commercially made Girl Scout doll was offered for sale through The American Girl, the official magazine of Girl Scouts, published from 1917 until 1979. Many different sizes and styles of Girl Scout dolls have been produced over the years: Brownie uniformed, Intermediate and Senior uniformed, and even adult or leader dolls; and although their popularity has waxed and waned throughout the decades, Girl Scout dolls are still going strong.

Girl Scout Dolls

Girl Scout dolls, circa 1950s, from the GSGATL Archives collection; each approx. 6-8″ tall

The official Girl Scout doll of today is made by Adora and is an 18” doll similar in style to the popular doll, American Girl (not to be confused with the Girl Scout publication, The American Girl). Many Girl Scout themed dolls and uniforms can be bought across the world, but only the official Adora doll licensed by Girl Scouts of USA (pictured below) can be found at your local council Badge and Sash Store  or through any council’s online store.

Adora Girl Scouts

The newest doll to officially join Girl Scouts as of July 2014 is fashion icon herself, Barbie! She wears the contemporary uniform of today’s girls: her sash and a crisp white shirt, but pink, rather than khaki bottoms. Hey, it’s Barbie… what would she do without her signature pink?

The Girl Scout Barbie doll is manufactured as a blonde, brunette, or African-American, as are most versions of the Barbie Doll, demonstrating how Barbie’s broad diversity is a perfect fit with the Girl Scouts of USA.

barbie scout

If you have any questions regarding Girl Scout dolls that we have in our collection at the GSGATL Archives, please don’t hesitate to contact us! There is currently a large display of vintage Girl Scout Dolls in the Mableton Service Center, downstairs next to the Resource Center and Archives Room. Feel free to stop and have a look!

Southern Alabama Girl Scout History Exhibit

We love to keep up with what our committee members are accomplishing. Gigi Baroco, a founding member of the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta Archives, is creating a new exhibit on 100 years of Girl Scouts, which will be available on March 12, 2012, at the History Museum of Mobile (Alabama). Since 2007, she has been the historian for the Girl Scouts of Southern Alabama, and has been a Girl Scout for 45 years. From Gigi:

“Girl Scouts all over the world are connected by traditions, friendships and vision, but each Girl Scout council has its own history because of its culture and geography.  The Girl Scouts of Southern Alabama is comprised of 30 counties: eight from Deep South, fifteen from South Central Alabama, and seven from Pine Valley, Concharty and  Cottaquilla councils.  We have a history of Mariner troops in our coastal areas, troops involved in state government in the Montgomery area and animal husbandry and agricultural activities in our rural areas.  Unique to Mobile is the Junior Miss pageant and for many years troops have adopted Junior Misses.

Alabama also has many rich archaeological sites around which encampments were held for 25 years.  We are digging up our past through scrapbooks, photos and personal stories and are developing visuals that showcase our history.  In addition to our council history, we are collecting items that have appeared over the years in the GSUSA equipment catalogs.  Our museum collection began with a major donation from the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta for which we are very grateful.  We are using these items in exhibits, fashion shows of vintage uniforms, and shadowboxes that can be easily transported to various venues.  Each shadowbox has a theme and includes vintage newspaper articles featuring Girl Scouts as well as Girl Scout awards and memorabilia related to the articles.  These shadowboxes along with enlarged photos, mannequins in vintage uniforms, and Girl Scout memorabilia from our collection will be in an exhibit room at the Museum of Mobile opening on March 12th.

We are looking forward to having programs for girls such as Victorian tea parties, signaling demonstrations, and other vintage badge activities as our fledgling museum develops.

This anniversary year, a “Discovering Our 100-Year History” patch program was designed to help Girl Scouts celebrate the 100th anniversary of Girl Scouts of the U.S.A and to develop an appreciation of how their council became what it is today. The requirements fall under three categories: Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. history, Girl Scouts of Southern Alabama history, and a Girl Scout history-related service project.  Additionally, a “Vintage” patch program was designed for girls to learn skills taken from Girl Scout badges from the past and to see how much life has changed over the last 100 years.  Activities have been lifted from the Signaller badge, the Health Guardian Badge, the Homemaker badge and many others.

If you have questions, comments or donations, please contact Gigi Baroco at gigibaroco@gulftel.com.”

We are grateful to have such a knowledgeable and dedicated volunteer on our History/Archives Committee. If you are in the Mobile, Alabama, area, please take the time to go see this wonderful exhibit!

Duluth Girl Scout Exhibit

May and Shannon show the 1914-1918 vintage uniform to visitor Elaine Meyers

Another exhibit featuring material from the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta Archives is “100 Years of Girl Scouting” in Duluth, Georgia. While there is a contemporary exhibit at Duluth City Hall, featuring local Girl Scouts’ community projects, the historical artifacts are located at the Strickland House in Duluth, Georgia. Currently the home of the Duluth Historical Society, the Strickland House is also the home to several Girl Scout troops who meet there on a regular basis.

Cadette Troop 1941: Signe Madson, Pinak Raodeo, Melissa Coleman, Jessekah Stewart, Pamela Nye (leader), May Hu, Allison Shoupe, Teyana Vance, Shannon Middleton, and Maria Branch

One of the troops, sixth grade Cadette Troop 1941, has met there for three years, and wanted to help out the DHS for being so welcoming. Since this is the 100th anniversary of Girl Scouts in the USA, the girls wanted to create an exhibit celebrating local Girl Scout history. They borrowed a few items from the Council Archives, but also borrowed a great number of items from local community members. One woman loaned her grandmother’s 1937 Intermediate uniform, her mother’s 1960s-era Junior uniform, and her 1990s-era Junior uniform. These were placed next to a current Junior uniform, showing the change in our Council’s name.

Maria welcomes the visitors

The Cadettes held an Open House on Sunday, February 12, from 3:00-5:00 pm, and gave free tours of the collection. Many of the donors came, as well as many community members who had never been in the Strickland House. The Cadettes enjoyed their roles as docents and had fun explaining the history of Girl Scouting and the significance of the items in the cases and on stands to the guests. The refreshments included lemonade and the early Girl Scout cookies in the side tea room.

The exhibit at Duluth City Hall and the exhibit at the Strickland House is available until April 28, 2012. Hours at the Duluth City Hall are Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. Hours at the Strickland House are Friday and Saturday from 12:00 to 3:00 pm. Tours can be arranged at other times. Visit http://www.duluthistorical.org/ for more information.

More stories about the exhibit:

Archives @ the Council Alumnae Event

Joyce and Sue, indispensable members of the Archives

The History/Archives Committee were well-represented today at the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta’s 100th Anniversary Kickoff for Alumnae event. The event was co-hosted by the UPS Women’s Leadership Development and Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta (GSGATL) Alumnae Association. GSUSA defines Girl Scout alumnae as women who were Girl Scouts (including Brownies) as girl, and/or adult members ages 18 and up, including current and former volunteers and staff. The GSGATL Alumnae association held this event to invite all former Girl Scouts to “Be Counted! Get Connected!” during 2012.

Chloe and TaMara Powell

We listened to a great event introduction by Marilyn Midyette, Council CEO. The next part of the program featured current Girl Scouts who were invited to share their thoughts about their experiences. TaMara Powell is one of our History/Archives volunteers, and her daughter Chloe was the first young lady who came to the stage to talk about her experiences in the current scouting program. She did an amazing job and it was a pleasure to hear her speak.

Attendees also learned ways to volunteer in short-term projects, such as helping with upcoming 100th Anniversary events, or volunteer in long-term projects, such as joining related alumnae groups, like the Gold Award Alliance, the Trefoil Guild, and the History/Archives Committee. We have many members on the History/Archives Committee who are also members of these other committees, and it is great to have such a wealth of knowledge just a phone call (or email) away. Mary Ann Milton, for example, came to the stage to speak about the Trefoil Guild, but she is also an active History/Archives committee member.

Sue answering questions about the 1965 Roundup Scrapbook

The Archives Committee had a table outside the lecture hall to display a small sampling of what is available at the Mableton location. We had a great time showing everyone what we had and were available for a wide range of questions. Most of the attendees came to the table saying, “I remember that!’ or “I had that!” It was fun to speak with them about their own personal collections and to find out their stories. Two of our committee members also wore historic uniforms, and were asked every few minutes if someone could take their picture.  Joyce Overcash-Dudley wore a Mariners uniform representing all the girls who used to be in a naval Girl Scout program (including herself as a younger Girl Scout). Sue Belden wore one of our original uniforms, dated 1914-1928, from the Archives collection.

Sue Belden and Pamela Nye at the Archives Committee table

We were most excited about being able to speak directly to more leaders about the opportunities to work with the girls. With the new badge, “Girl Scout Way,” in all the handbooks–Daisies through Ambassadors–we have a great connection with the girls (and leaders) in learning more about Girl Scout history. We are also developing programs for the girls to come in and earn some service hours while helping to preserve and make accessible our history.

Lots of memories were shared, and we encouraged everyone to sign up to get more information about the Archives and all of our activities. We told attendees about the blog, Facebook, and Twitter feeds, and even met a few who already subscribe to the various lists. It was a great experience to speak with all who came to the table, and look forward to working with many more volunteers in the future!

Many thanks to the committee members who attended today: Sue Belden, Mary Ann Milton, Joyce Overcash-Dudley, Patty McIver, TaMara Powell, and Pamela Nye.

Cadettes Visit Archives

Troop 1941 with Sue Belden, Archivist

On Sunday, December 4, 2011, a few Cadette Girl Scouts from Duluth Troop 1941 visited the Archives of the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta. The troop is learning how to curate an exhibit as part of a service project in their community. They meet at the historic Strickland House in Duluth, Georgia, the home of the Duluth Historical Society. In exchange for meeting space, the girls of the troop perform regular service projects to help the house and the Society. In honor of the upcoming 100th anniversary of Girl Scouting, the girls wanted to create an exhibit to highlight the history of Girl Scouting in Duluth, Georgia, and Gwinnett County (where Duluth is located).

Sue Belden, Volunteer Archivist at the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta, met the girls to show them various artifacts that they might use in their exhibit. The girls were most interested in the vintage uniforms, and enjoyed listening to Sue explain the details of the insignia. They also viewed handbooks, scrapbooks, magazines, dolls, posters, pictures, and patches. The girls asked many questions about the collection, and settled on eleven items to borrow on loan for the Duluth Historical Society exhibit.

As part of the plans for the exhibit, the girls will be assembling at least 100 items to display, and include at least 100 facts about Girl Scouts. The other items in the exhibit will be collected from Duluth-area troops. The girls also want to collect more information from individual troops, so with the help of the History/Archives Committee, they have created a Troop History Questionnaire.  You can help their work and the work of the Council Archives by downloading this form and documenting your troop’s history.

The exhibit will be on display from February through April 2012, at the Strickland House and at the Duluth City Hall. Troop 1941 invites you to come and see it!