Posted: Friday, September 7th 2012 at 12:53pm
Newspaper museum opens Saturday in Banks Co.
By B.J. Williams Editor
HOMER - A newspaper group in north Georgia has saved a piece of history in Banks County, and that piece of history will be open to public view for the first time Saturday.
The Georgia Weekly Newspaper Museum in downtown Homer has been a year in the making, although the history inside the building dates back to 1888. While the exterior of the building in downtown Homer still needs a facelift, according to Mike Buffington with Mainstreet Newspapers, Inc., the interior is a functioning replica of a newspaper office of the early 1900s.
Buffington, who is co-publisher of the Mainstreet newspaper group, said the newspaper purchased the building last year. He said the structure contains the original letterpress equipment used to print the Banks County Journal from the early 1900s to 1969, when offset printing became the norm in the newspaper industry.
"[People] will see several type cases where type was set one letter at a time by hand, they'll see a small job press that is operated by hand...they'll see a Washington iron hand press, we'll be printing a page on it Saturday," said Buffington. He said other pieces of equipment also are operational and will be running when the museum opens at 10:00 a.m. Saturday.
Buffington said the goal of opening the museum is not only the preservation of newspaper history, but also the education of a generation that has grown up knowing only electronic media.
"Not everything was digital," said Buffington. "At one time it was a very manual, very dirty, inky, smelly kind of process just to print something up on a sheet of paper."
The Georgia Weekly Newspaper Museum will officially open its doors to the public Saturday morning at 10:00 and remain open until 2:00 p.m. as part of Banks County's Annual Holiday Festival. Buffington said there is no admission charge.
The museum is located 7 miles north of I-85 at Banks Crossing at 953 Historic Homer Highway (Old Hwy. 441) across from the old Banks County courthouse.
Link: Georgia Newspaper Museum web site
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