The Georgia Room is the Cobb County Public Library System’s genealogical and historical collection. Located in the Central Library near the downtown Marietta Square, the Georgia Room serves informational and educational pursuits of a wide range of users.
Demand for the Georgia Room has grown steadily as its holdings and physical space have increased since it opened nearly four decades ago. The Georgia Room draws visitors from Cobb County, Georgia, and beyond. No appointment is required to visit the room and to use its resources.
Major features of the Georgia Room are an extensive collection of Georgia history materials, including books, photos, maps, and newspapers; Georgia and U.S. genealogy resources in print and online; and the Cobb African American Connection, a special collection documenting the cultural life and contributions of people of African descent in Marietta and Cobb County. Items on the Civil War, Native American history, and family histories are also available.
Although Georgia Room materials are non-circulating, the ease of access of its offerings has improved in recent years with the addition of new space and resources, such as the Gale Genealogy Connect, an advanced online research tool.
Overall, there are about 15,000 items in the Georgia Room, according to Carolyn Crawford, head of the Georgia Room since 1988.
A wide variety of people use the Georgia Room, from causal researchers to professionals, Crawford said. Topics they explore include family histories and the development of Georgia and Cobb County. Milestone events in Cobb such as the Civil War and the economic growth spurred by the rise of aircraft manufacturing during World War II and the post-war era are popular topics, she adds.
All are welcomed to the Georgia Room, anyone from anywhere. “We definitely should be a stop on your path to discovery,” Crawford says.
For her leadership in developing the Georgia Room collection and enhancing public access to its holdings, Carolyn Crawford was the recipient of an annual award by the Cobb Landmarks and Historical Society in January. The organization calls her “a walking encyclopedia of Cobb County’s history.”
Professional genealogist David Brandenburg is a Georgia Room regular. “It’s a destination,” says the Smyrna resident, who has been visiting the Georgia Room since the early 1980s. “A lot of genealogists from around Atlanta come here.”
A major factor in growth of the Georgia Room is support from the Cobb County community. The Georgia Room opened in 1970 after the generous contribution from Miss Virginia Vanstone Crosby of Marietta in memory of her father, Charles Mayo Crosby. In 2007, the Cobb Library Foundation contributed to the Georgia Room expansion to house the growing collection and add more computers and microfilm/fiche readers.