I would be tempted to say that this is one of the nicest small museums I have every visited, however I can't. It's actually not that small..... It is however, quite attractive. The Mount Airy area has a wide variety of interesting historical features, and the museum covers most of them quite well, from the Native Saura people who once lived here, to the Granite quarrying industry, to moonshining, to Donna Fargo. There are stuffed turkeys and deer, fire engines (the kids can slide down a fire pole and ring a foot operated fire bell), old weaving looms and a recreated pioneer cabin and tobacco barn. There is a display on the extensive folk music traditions of the area, including how to make a banjo or fiddle. And, yes, there's a small bit on Andy Griffith, but they leave most of that to the other museum in Mount Airy. On the fourth floor (yes, they have four floors, and an elevator) there are several activities the children will enjoy, including an area with huge foam logs that can be used to build a small log cabin, and stations where the kids can try on old period clothing. My nine year old daughter loved it.
For those among us who are fascinated by the strange and offbeat, there is a nice display on Chang and Eng Bunker, the famous "Siamese Twins" who retired to the Mount Airy area after making a tidy sum exhibiting themselves all over the world. They both married (to different women) and had numerous kids each, some of whose descendants still live in the area.
There was plenty of parking within a block or two, and it's in easy walking distance of the Snappy Lunch and Floyd's Barber shop. The gentleman working the info desk was very friendly and helpful. I'd strongly suggest you stop by if you're in the area. Fee was $6 for adults and $4 for kids, which I thought was pretty resonable considering all they have.
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