Mission and History

Our Mission

Cherokee County Historical Society is dedicated to historic preservation and education. The Historical Society is an advocate for preservation in Cherokee County through our annual Historic Preservation Awards and Sites Worth Saving. We also provide local property owners with preservation assistance. The Historical Society is the caretaker for important artifacts and documents pertaining to Cherokee County’s history. The Society shares these materials through publications, exhibitions, and public programs so that Cherokee County residents and visitors can learn about our rich history.

Our History

The Cherokee County Historical Society was founded in 1975 by a group interested in preserving local history. The Historical Society is the sole organization in Cherokee County engaged in collecting, preserving and interpreting all aspects of its history. The Historical Society is a private, non-profit 501(c)(3) organization governed by a Board of Directors. The Historical Society was a volunteer organization until 2004, when an Executive Director was hired. The current Director, Stefanie Joyner holds an advanced degree in Historic Preservation. The Society still relies on volunteers and interns to assist with collection management, fundraising events, and the Museum.

The Historical Society has an archival collection consisting of over 100,000 items pertaining to Cherokee County history. The collection includes documents, books, photographs, and objects, which range from Native American artifacts to farming tools. The office and library, located at 221 East Marietta Street in Canton, is normally open Monday-Friday 10-4pm but is currently limited due to COVID-19.

In 2011, CCHS opened the Cherokee County History Museum and Visitors Center. This museum includes an overview of Cherokee County history with artifacts, photographs, and interactive iPad presentations. There are also short videos about four Cherokee County residents ranging from 1838-1942, including a 10-year-old Native American. The museum is currently closed due to COVID-19.

The Historical Society is a Local Partner of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and a Member of the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation; American Alliance of Museums; Georgia Association of Museums; American Association for State and Local History; Georgia Historical Society; Georgia Chapter of the Trail of Tears Association; Canton Main Street; Woodstock Main Street; Preservation Woodstock; Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce.

The Historical Society has received the following awards:

Georgia Historical Society Affiliate of the Year – 2004
Georgia Historical Society Roger K. Warlick Award for Archival Excellence for the Buddy Alexander Collection in 2008
Georgia Historical Society Roger K. Warlick Award for Program Development for Investing in Community Legacy: A Partnership Between Cherokee County Schools and the Cherokee County History Museum in 2013;
Georgia Historical Records Advisory Board Award for Archival Program Development in 2011 for Hear their Stories, Walk in their Shoes.