The Plains Historic Inn
Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter have joined their hometown in developing an Historic Inn & Antiques Mall located on Main Street in Plains. They now invite you to step back in time and enjoy the accommodations of one of seven period suites, authentically furnished from the 1920s to 1980s -“every room a history lesson.” Each suite includes a private bath, cable TV, a smoke-free environment, and meets accessibility standards. Guests enjoy wireless Internet as well as exclusive use of the common room and balcony overlooking the historic square that provides a place for relaxation. Every morning wake up to a complimentary continental breakfast. Below the Inn, enjoy shopping for antiques in the new mall featuring display cases and over 25 booths. The Georgia Traveler visits Plains in Episode 610.
From the Train Depot, to several museums, antique malls and even the peanut store, there are plenties of activities in Plains, Georgia, to entertain. And no visit would be complete without viewing the childhood home of Jimmy Carter. Scroll on down and check out all that’s in store, for your visit to Plains.
Jimmy Carter National Historic Site
Few U.S. Presidents have had such close ties with where they were born and raised. The rural southern culture of Plains, Georgia, that revolves around farming, church, and school had a large influence in molding the character and in shaping the political policies of the 39th President of the United States. The site includes President Carter’s residence, boyhood farm, school, and the railroad depot, which served as his campaign headquarters during the 1976 election. The Plains High School serves as the park’s museum and visitor center. The Jimmy Carter National Preservation District includes part of the town of Plains and its environs. The area surrounding the residence is under the protection of the Secret Service and the home is not open to the public. The Carters returned to Plains in January 1981. The former President and First Lady pursue many of the goals of the administration through The Carter Presidential Center in Atlanta, which has programs to alleviate human suffering and to promote human rights and world peace. When they are in Plains, Carter teaches Sunday school at Maranatha Baptist Church to which the public is invited. The Carters’ ties to Plains have endured the stresses of public life, remaining as strong as they were decades ago.
The Plains School
Plains High School serves as the main museum/visitor center for the Jimmy Carter National Historic Site. Visitors find a restored and furnished classroom, principal’s office and auditorium. Other rooms feature exhibits that explain the Carters’ lives in Plains, including political and business careers, education, family, religion and post-presidency. There is a 25-minute video that focuses on the life and accomplishments of Jimmy Carter told by those who know him best, his friends, neighbors and family.
300 N Bond St, Plains, GA 31780
Phone: (229) 824-4104
The Plains Train Depot
The Plains Train Depot contains a self-guided museum with exhibits focusing on the 1976 Presidential Campaign. It served as a train depot from 1888 to 1951, when passenger service to the area was discontinued. The building was opened in 1976 as Jimmy Carter’s Presidential Campaign Headquarters, and during that time approximately 10,000 people a day came to Plains to find out about candidate Carter.
100 West Main Street, Plains, GA 31780
Phone: (229) 824-4104
Billy Carter Gas Station Museum
The famous south Georgia service station once owned by Billy Carter has come back to life as a museum, reflecting the former First Brother’s life and the station’s history. Billy Carter, who died in 1988, lived in Plains most of his life, managing the family peanut business for a while and in 1972 buying the old service station, which became the town hot spot during the Carter campaign. It was renovated and re-opened as The Billy Carter Service Station Museum in 2008 through the joint efforts of the University of Georgia, the Plains Better Hometown Association and Billy Carter’s family
Visitors can see up close various items, including colorful articles from Carter’s closet, commendations from around the world, press coverage from the 1970s and 80s, and “Billy Beer” paraphernalia. The collection also contains an array of personal mementos marking his life as a husband, father of six children, grandfather, and recovered alcoholic. Located at 216 West Church Street in Plains, the Billy Carter Service Station Museum is open Monday through Sunday at select times.
104 E Church St, Plains, GA 31780
Phone: (229) 824-5373
Historic SAM Shortline Railroad
COME RIDE THE TRAIN!
Riding in air-conditioned, 1949 vintage cars, you’ll enjoy a mix of romantic yesteryear with the excitement of today’s South. The SAM Shortline stops in quaint towns filled with fun attractions, restaurants and shopping.
The depot in Plains is a noteworthy survivor from the AP&L era, having made a brief comeback when it was reopened on April 18, 1975 to serve as Jimmy Carter’s Presidential Campaign headquarters.
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