The Olympia Mill Village Museum has three components to enjoy: 1.) The Mill House School, listed on the National Historic Registry, tells about “Life in the Olympia Mill Village in the Early 1900s.” This house museum was the site of the original Olympia School that opened in 1901. The school is still in operation today. 2.) Ten outdoor exhibits give additional information about mill village life, local businesses, and architectural features of the five distinct types of mill houses. 3.) Olympia School Annex tells the 120-year history of Olympia School, with trophies, athletic uniforms, photos, and exhibits celebrating some of the unique characteristics of this school’s contribution to the lives of thousands of our local citizens.
Building this museum has been a six-year project. With private donations and local businesses contributing goods, services, and funding, we developed a museum experience worthy of public attention. Grants from Richland County Conservation Commission, Hospitality and Accommodations Tax assisted our renovations. Our foundation has created an amazing tribute to the people who came to Columbia in the early 1900s to escape grinding poverty and build a better life for their families through hard work. We stand on the shoulders of our ancestors and we celebrate the values instilled in our “Linthead” culture.
Admission is always free, and the regular hours are Fridays and Saturdays from 11:00—4:00. We are staffed by wonderful Volunteer Guides. We welcome all who have an interest in this local history and the Historic Olympia Mill Village to come visit. We schedule private tours for Senior, Civic, Church, Clubs, Student Groups at other times. Call Sherry at 803-719-7138 for more information. Come see us soon!
By Dr. Sherry Jaco, Director, 2/24/20