Hand presents program to Dames

Submitted photoMeme Hand presented a program of the Smith family of Thomas County to the John Lee of Nansemond Chapter, National Society Colonial Dames 17th Century.

Meme Hand presented an interesting program to the John Lee of Nansemond Chapter, National Society Colonial Dames 17th Century. Hand’s topic was recent discoveries about the Smith family of Thomas County, Georgia.

The family log home, built in the 1870s by Rufus Smith, is now on the grounds of the Thomasville History Center. She explained the influence of technology in facilitating her research regarding the history and genealogy of the Smith family.

Rufus Smith was the ancestor of the late Franklin Isom Smith (1920-2008), well-known farmer and banker of Thomas County. The log house was moved to the History Center grounds in 1974, from where it originally stood in the Enon Road community.

Rufus Smith gave two acres of his land for Enon Baptist Church and its adjoining graveyard where Franklin Smith is buried. The house has been restored and furnished with period pieces. In 1991, a kitchen was added to the rear of the log house by moving a small house, built in the 1870s, from Berlin, Georgia.

The Georgia Association of Museums and Galleries recently presented Hand with the Student Project Award for her extensive study of the history and genealogy of the Smith family and its homestead.

Some of the purposes of the Georgia Association of Museums and Galleries are to work with non-profit museums and galleries to encourage growth, stimulate public interest, interchange information, and promote research to foster understanding of cultural and natural resources of the community and state.

Hand is a graduate of the College of Charleston with a bachelor’s degree in history. She is currently enrolled at Florida State University in its Museum and Cultural Heritage Masters degree program, a two-year course of study. She will spend next academic year in an internship program at the Ringling Museum, Sarasota, Florida, graduating in 2020.

The National Society Colonial Dames 17th Century is a heritage organization of women who can prove ancestors who came to America as colonists before 1701.