ABOUT THE CARRABELLE HISTORY MUSEUM

The Carrabelle History Museum is a project of the local non-profit organization, Carrabelle CARES. It started as an idea of the Carrabelle Waterfront Partnership found in their document, "Charting the Course for the Carrabelle Waterfront: A Vision Plan". It is sponsored by the Carrabelle History Society and the City of Carrabelle with support from the Franklin County Tourist Development Council with a community partnership from the Franklin County Public Library. Our museum is located in the Old Carrabelle City Hall. It opened in April of 2009. 

 

AN ANCHOR BUILDING IN THE HEART OF OUR HISTORIC DOWNTOWN

The museum has 4 rooms to display its collections, a workroom/office for the volunteers to process the incoming artifacts and a nice long hallway for special seasonal displays. The City conducted its business here for 75 years. It was named in honor of the local brick mason who created each block and brick with hand-crafted local materials. It was built in 1933 during the Depression as a work program to employ locals. The structure is a two story brick vernacular style of that period. Mr. Justiss is often called the "Father of Carrabelle" since he built over 119 businesses and homes throughout the 1930's when the town was rebuilt at its current location after being ravaged by storms and fires. We are gradually rehabilitating the building with the help of the City and the Florida Department of State, Division of Historical Resources. The building has undergone extensive restorations and the museum plans to expand into the newly refinished upstairs exhibit area very soon.

DONATE TO THE MUSEUM

Donate to the Carrabelle History Museum via PayPal or credit card. You do NOT need a PayPal account to make a donation. Select one of the suggested donations, or enter any amount.


Carrabelle’s Old City Hall wins a 2020 Florida Preservation Award

One of the most long standing efforts of the Carrabelle Waterfront Partnership over the past 12 years has been the restoration of Carrabelle’s Old City Hall and its reuse as the Carrabelle History Museum. The partnership between the City of Carrabelle and the Carrabelle Historical Society was recognized on Thursday, July 30, 2020 by the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation with a 2020 Florida Preservation Award.

These Florida Preservation Awards recognize people, organizations and communities who have worked to protect Florida’s extraordinary history and heritage. The Florida Preservation Award “nominations were made by the public with recipients selected by a jury from around the state representing a variety of backgrounds and experiences” according to the press release from the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation. “Although we are living in unprecedented times, it was important to us to continue our work recognizing excellence in historic preservation in our state,” said Florida Trust Board President Friederike Mittner. “Thank you to our award winners for all they do for preservation in our state.”

Now home to the Carrabelle History Museum, Carrabelle’s original City Hall was constructed in the1930s Depression Era. “The restoration of this vital part of Carrabelle’s history was and is an important achievement”, says Tamara Allen, Director, Carrabelle Historical Society and Carrabelle History Museum. “The mission of the Carrabelle Historical Society is to preserve the history and culture of Carrabelle and to serve as an inspiration for the future. Rehabilitating the Old City Hall, such a significant anchor in the heart of our historical downtown, is a meaningful part of that mission.”

This project’s success was due to a true cooperative effort of many partners - the Carrabelle Waterfront Partnership, Carrabelle Historical Society, Florida Department of State–Division of Historical Resources, the City of Carrabelle, MLD Architects and Godfrey Builders. According to the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation, “The project promotes the concept that sustainability of a historic site begins with its ability to engage its community. The Historic Carrabelle City Hall is not only significant for its long-standing association with the history of Florida, but also because of its past and future legacy of a commitment to serve, teach, inspire and support both current and future generations.”

ABOUT CHM

Welcome to the Carrabelle History Museum!

We opened in April of 2009, and since then, residents of the community have generously shared their pictures, genealogy, memories, household and work items to build our collection. Our first artifact was the medical bag of beloved midwife Tillie Miller, donated by Rita Brown Millender and John Brown. From then Carrabelle History Museum has grown to house thousands of items in its collections. Gratefully, we still receive wonderful local artifacts.

The museum is located in the Old Carrabelle City Hall, built by local mason Marvin Justiss in 1933 during the Depression as a work program to employ locals. The museum has exhibits rooms to display collections, a large entry hall for special displays, and a workroom/office for the volunteers to process the incoming artifacts. We have several displays that highlight Local Heroes; the Steamship Tarpon, which was key to building our community in the early 1900's; and Carrabelle's "First People", indigenous people who lived here thousands of years ago.

HELP US RAISE FUNDS FOR AN ELEVATOR

Take a chance on this beautiful 2-piece crystal candle holder to help us get an elevator to the second floor of the Carrabelle History Museum.

We have applied for a historic preservation grant from the state of Florida but we need to raise $13,500 in matching funds for the elevator to the second floor. The good news is we have already received $7,500 in donations for the elevator fund. And the even better news is there is plenty of opportunity for you to help!

Raffle tickets are $1.00 a piece or 6 for $5.00.
Drawing to be held December 5, 2021, just in time for Christmas.

You can also make donations online via this link
(You do NOT have to have Paypal to use it. Just please add "Elevator Fund" in the notes section)

SUMMER 2021 EXHIBIT EVENT

This summer, The Carrabelle History Museum presented a special exhibit featuring Carrabelle High School memorabilia. It is part of the new and expanded Family Life Room with high school sports trophies across the decades starting with the 1920 football team and the 1937 state champion girls’ basketball team. There are old cheerleader outfits, letter sweaters, stadium cushions, band jackets, and cafeteria trays marking the transition from the Carrabelle Mullets to the Green Devils, and finally the Panthers. Old pictures and artifacts of local drug stores and popular restaurants are alongside Coca-Cola memorabilia. Family genealogy notebooks and school yearbooks to peruse offer a trip down memory lane. 

PLUS we hosted a special CHS Reunion & Alumni Reception on Saturday July 31!  See event photos below thanks to Rod Gasche and Joan Matey.