Marietta museum spends a year researching to add Hispanic perspective to exhibits

MARIETTA, Ga. — The Marietta Museum of History consists of about 50,000 artifacts but will soon feature many more.

“We strive to showcase and tell the stories of all community members in Marietta, in Cobb County. We focus on all of Cobb County,” said Amy Reed, museum director.

The museum realized among the thousands of pieces on display that a large portion of the Cobb County population was missing. Cobb County’s Hispanic community was missing from the museum.

“We are a museum. We’re not a book. A book has all the information. The research can be compiled into a great book, but we need artifacts,” said Reed.

Last year, a group of honor students at Kennesaw State University compiled a “box full” of research to help the museum solve the problem of the missing representation. The research from the group is officially called the Cobb County Latinx Research Archives.

“Most of the research they found brought them here in the 70s and forward. So it’s relatively new. And no one has — as far as here at the museum — no one had been documenting that,” said Reed.

The museum aims to piece together a history that “began here” in the early 1970s. Reed said this is relatively “new,” given that Cobb County was formed back in 1832. But it’s still quite important.

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“This is the very first time we’ve had any amount of information specifically documenting the history of our Latinx community,” said Reed.

The museum still needs help from the community in curating artifacts for the exhibit.

“We need things to show, to put on display. We’re hoping as word gets out about this project that people will come forth and say, ‘Hey. I’ve got this dress word at my quinceanera, or I’ve got documentation that shows when I became a citizen.’ Whatever it is, that experience here in Cobb County relates to their heritage. We would love to have the items here to put on display,” Reed said.