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Funk Heritage celebrates Super Museum Sunday

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The Hall of Ancients

February marks the anniversary of Georgia’s founding and is dedicated as Georgia History Month. To celebrate this important day in the state’s history the Georgia Historical Society held a Super Museum Sunday involving museums and historic sites across the state, including the Funk Heritage Center located on Reinhardt’s campus.

During the event, the center’s doors opened to the public with all admission fees waived for the day. Visitors were able to see the center’s permanent exhibits detailing the lives and culture of the Native Americans living in Georgia prior to colonization, as well as the rotating art exhibits located in the Buffington Gallery. The current pieces on temporary display are by Native American artists Robert Ansley, Bert Seabourn and Clayton Straughn.

Guests visited the Hall of the Ancients, a section dedicated to the different Eras of Native American history, as well as the history hidden underneath the modern Canton area. Some of the more recent additions to the Hall are dedicated to the dig site, at the location of the Canton Walmart, where the museum received many of their artifacts. Additionally guests were able to visit galleries dedicated to Contemporary Native American art and a large collection of historic hand tools from several periods.

While the event itself was limited to that Sunday, the Funk Heritage Center aims to fill the entirety of Georgia History Month with a lecture series held every Tuesday in February. The first of these lectures is to be held on Feb. 7 and covers the political nature of the reconstruction era. The following Tuesday Feb. 14 the second lecture will cover the Cherokee newspaper the Cherokee Phoenix, with the final lecture on Feb. 21 covers the life of Cherokee Chief James Vann. Admission is $10 for the public, $5 for members and Reinhardt faculty, and free for students with their Eagle Card IDs and a reservation. Reservations are required for attendance and can be made at (770) 720-5967.

 

 

Written by: Jacob Howard. Photo credit: Jacob Howard & Malik Golar

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It was once illegal to drink soda in Waleska

Je'Ray Jackson gets a soda
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CommentaryA century ago, it wouldn’t have been easy to get a soda at Reinhardt. In fact, it would have been illegal in Waleska, and students who dared to bring the contraband liquid onto campus faced potential expulsion.

Students learned of these restrictions in a publication called “The Catalog” that contained the basic regulations, guidelines and course information for Reinhardt students. Rule No. 12 in the 1927 edition said, “The sale of soft drinks is forbidden in Waleska. Any student having them brought to Waleska will be subject to expulsion.”

Rule 12

Although it can’t be confirmed why soda was banned, reporter Max Bixler of the Atlanta Journal Constitution, in a 1998 AJC article, suggested the prohibition probably arose from rumors that Coke literally contained cocaine. This, despite the fact that the tiny amount cocaine formerly contained was removed shortly after the turn of the century.

Rule No. 12 banning soda did not appear in the 1928 version of  “The Catalog” and there’s a popular theory for the reason.

Rumors suggest that in 1928, when Samuel C. Dobbs made financial contributions to the university, he stipulated that rule No. 12 be removed.

Dobbs donated $23,500 to Reinhardt. This may seem like a small amount but according to a U.S. government inflation calculator, adjusted for inflation, that’s the equivalent of  $330,713.71 today. Dobbs’ contribution literally bought the school out of debt. The donation also resulted in the construction of the building we know today as the Samuel C. Dobbs Science Hall.

But why did this capitalist care about whether or not Reinhardt’s students were able to enjoy soda? Well, he had a stake in it; Dobbs was an influential and very involved employee of Coca-Cola, serving as their president for three years.

It would be difficult to make the argument that Dobbs’ generosity didn’t have an influence on the removal of the ban, but no record can be found to confirm or deny the exact reasons the law was removed.

Regardless of the reason, Reinhardt’s students and faculty owe a debt of gratitude to Dobbs. Not only does the school have a beautifully built science building, but he also kept Reinhardt alive—the debt very well may have ended the university’s tenure.

Of course, chances are also good that Dobbs helped ensure an ice-cold Coca-Cola product could be enjoyed with a meal at Gordy.

 

Written By: Thomas May. Photo Credits: Color Rendering of the original Samuel C. Dobbs Science Hall, Reinhardt University Archives. Featured Image Photo Credit: Thomas May. Featured Image: Student Je’Ryan Jackson grabs a soda at Gordy.