October 15, 2018

Museum Salutes the 20th Anniversary of Olympic Torch in Franklin

Mrs. Judy Miller with memorabilia from the 1996 appearance of the Olympic Torch in Franklin (Photo: The News and Banner)

Mrs. Judy Miller with memorabilia from the 1996 appearance of the Olympic Torch in Franklin (Photo: The News and Banner)

(Franklin, GA) — In the 1989 Heard County History Book, according to long time Franklin resident and businessman, Thomas Lipford, “W.D Lipford constructed a new service station on the northeast corner of the square.”

It was a Gulf Station that was added to, changed to different businesses through the years, then saved and renovated by First Georgia Bank in 2008.

The Heard County Commissioners bought the building from the Community and Southern Bank recently and have given permission for the Heard County Historical Society to use the building as another museum site.

The Historical Society is using one section to remember the Gulf Filling Station that was and the other section as a display and research area much like the Old Jail Museum.

Twenty years ago, on July 2,1996, the Coca-Cola sponsored Olympic Torch Relay that began in Greece, traveled across the U.S. to the square in Franklin, Georgia. It was a night to remember!

Estimates were that 15,000+ came out to see the festivities. Our Heard County torchbearers were Ellen Nowicki who brought the flame across the river bridge and passed it off to Terry Harper who ran it to the caldron on the stage on the square. There it stayed until Susan Dupuy lit her torch and ran her part of the relay at 5:00 a.m. on July 17.

During the evening, the Heard County Community Chorus and many individual talents performed on the stage to entertain those who came to see the flame in Franklin.

On July 2, during Heard County Chamber of Commerce’s Summerfest, the Filling Station Museum will be open from 5:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m. exhibiting pictures and memorabilia from July 16-17, 1996 and also Atlanta Olympic activities.

Everyone is invited to come help us celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Coca Cola sponsored Torch Relay in Franklin during Summerfest on Saturday, July 2 from 5-8 p.m.

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