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Coming Soon...

The National Civil War Naval Museum is pleased to announce the creation of its newest permanent exhibit, Columbus: A Civil War City. This exhibit focuses on the people, industry, and events that defined Columbus and the Chattahoochee Valley during the most important era of our nation’s history. It is 1828 in west Georgia and a new city has emerged along the Chattahoochee River. From humble beginnings, our story follows the growth of Columbus as a city of textile mills, factories, and craftsmen to the most important industrial center in the deep South during the Civil War. Located in the Woodruff Gallery, alongside the Jackson, this exhibit will explore the following storylines:



Welcome to Port Columbus

Let us take you back in time to a prosperous city in the decades prior to the Civil War. Columbus has grown from boomtown to prosperous industrial city since its founding. Experience the sights and sounds of a bustling frontier community. Peek in the shop windows or listen to the townsfolk go about their everyday lives.


City of Industry

Known as the “Lowell of the South,” primarily for its textile production prior to the Civil War, Columbus soon emerges as a center of wartime industry, second only to Richmond, and for Confederate naval innovation during the war. Learn about the process of building an ironclad and meet the men behind the planning and development of the Jackson.

Horace King exhibit


Horace King, a Complex Genius

Horace King was a remarkable man. Architect. Builder. Born enslaved, Horace continued to work with his teacher, partner, and former master after obtaining his freedom. Learn about the man and his work. Interact with the tools of his trade and experience the bridge design that made him famous.


The Last Battle

Step into the last significant land battle of the war and meet the leaders and men poised to fight one last time for their cause. Immerse yourself in the sights and sounds as the Union forces under orders to burn Columbus to the ground, and the local Confederate forces intent on saving their city.



Raising the Jackson

Completed near the end of the war, the Confederate’s last ironclad was docked in the Naval Yard in Columbus on April 16, 1865. Union troops captured and set fire to the ship, causing it to sink downriver. Almost 100 years later, the ship was raised from the depths of the Chattahoochee. Learn how this massive excavation project took place.


Please consider making a donation to support this important project.

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