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East Point Historical Society shares plans for the future after 3-month closure

EPHS presented several new board members and community engagement projects upon reopening to the public.

EAST POINT, Ga. — The view from the front porch of 1685 Norman Berry has certainly changed over course of the past six months.

The three dozen or so trees that were planted back in February have begun to take root and sprouted leaves. This time next year, those very same trees will bear low-hanging fruit like plums, fig, cherries and the native pawpaw.

The mounds of dirt and construction debris along Norman Berry Drive have vanished as well, leaving behind the newly-completed first phase of the East Point PATH Model Mile pedestrian and bike trail.

It is here the East Point Historic Society Complex, also known as Spring Street Park, resides, and since 1978 it has served as the home of the East Point Historical Society (EPHS).

Open to the public for the first time in nearly three months, the EPHS is well within walking distance of several East Point neighborhoods, including Semmes Park, Conley Hills, Frog Hollow and Jefferson Park.

Credit: East Point Historical Society

Since the usual Spring Cleaning has been postponed, here are some upcoming volunteer opportunities (that may be) available for interested residents on a weekly basis:

The Museum: EPHS President Brenda Tackett is looking for volunteers to help with the cleaning and dusting of the house interior.

The Garden: EPHS Board Member D. Lynn Bray has gotten a good start on house exterior and sidewalks with some much-needed pressure-washing. He will also be looking for volunteers to help arrange and maintain the grounds.

The Train: Resident Perry Bennett began the huge task of repainting the train engine on the complex grounds before the shutdown. His goal is to complete the outside of the train, then to clean and redecorate the interior of the train.

Tackett was recently invited as a representative of the EPHS to the City of East Point’s inaugural Juneteenth Celebration and Community Conversations on June 19. The event was listed as a virtual event to prevent overcrowding.

Hosted by the NAACP Atlanta Branch and the City of East Point community, members gathered for a celebration of African-American freedom, history and culture with a Community Conversation on racism and "othering."

On that day, an intimate conversation was had between Tackett and former mayor Patsy Jo Hilliard, the first African-American and first female mayor of East Point, about updating the exhibits at the museum to reflect a more comprehensive reflection of the residents of East Point.

Credit: The Black America Series: East Point, GA was written by local scholar, Dr. Herman 'Skip' Mason in 2001.

Tackett had this to say to My East Point News about her experience, “I was asked to participate in the Juneteenth Presentation at City Hall by the City Council, and I felt very honored. I spoke on some of the prominent African-American members of East Point.”

For more updates about the East Point Historical Society, you can stop in on Thursdays and Saturdays or visit their Facebook page.

Donations to the EPHS may be made through their non-profit Paypal account.

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