The Roger K. Warlick Local History Achievement Award is presented each year in the following categories: Media Project, Preservation Project, Archival Excellence, Exhibits, and Programs. It recognizes excellence in the collection, preservation, and dissemination of Georgia’s history by an affiliate chapter of the Georgia Historical Society. The Old Governor’s Mansion, a part of Georgia College & State University since 1889, is an affiliate chapter of the society.
"Receiving the Roger K. Warlick Award in two categories from the Georgia Historical Society is quite a coup,” said Georgia College President Dorothy Leland. “At Georgia College we are proud of the Old Governor's Mansion and the role it now plays with distinction--educating the public about Milledgeville's and Georgia's history. We appreciate the society's recognition of our efforts and the work that they do year in and year out to promote Georgia history."
The Old Governor’s Mansion won in both the category of Preservation for its restoration efforts, and Exhibits for the development the exhibit “Gilded Opulence, Slave Labor, and Women’s Public Education: 200 Years of Diversity at the Milledgeville Governor’s Residence Reflected in Architectural History and Archeology,” on view in the Education Room of the mansion.
Completed in 1839, the Old Governor’s Mansion is one of the finest examples of High Greek Revival architecture in the nation. The building served as the residence for Georgia’s chief executives for more than 30 years and its history encompasses the Antebellum, Civil War, and early Reconstruction phases of the state’s history. Following the war, Georgia’s seat of government was relocated to Atlanta, and the mansion was abandoned. Given over to Georgia College (then Georgia Normal & Industrial College) in 1889, the Mansion served as the founding building of the institution and is the campus’s most treasured structure.
Beginning in the late 1990s, an initiative was begun to return the Old Governor’s Mansion to its antebellum splendor. Following five years of intensive historical, structural, and material research, the Old Governor’s Mansion began its long awaited historic restoration in November 2001. It reopened in February of 2005.
“I am elated that we were able to garner the Roger K. Warlick award in two categories,” said Jim Turner, director of the Old Governor’s Mansion. “This is a very important honor for the Mansion, our university, and the community.”