Educational Resources

Old Governor's Mansion
Educational Resource Page

Welcome, teachers and students, to Georgia's Old Governor's Mansion Educational Resource Page. The Mansion staff has designed a set of lesson plans based on the Social Studies Georgia Standards of Excellence for 4th, 8th and United States History classes starting in the 2017-2018 school year. A strong focus is placed on utilizing primary documents. Images and/or transcripts of these documents are included so they can be either viewed online or downloaded and printed. Through examining these documents, students will gain firsthand knowledge of what life was like in Georgia's Old Governor's Mansion in the 19th century and they will also develop valuable critical thinking and research skills that reinforce your classroom instruction. If you're interested in bringing more primary source documents and hands-on objects into your classroom from the Mansion, check out our traveling trunk.

Here is a list of state standards as applicable to the Mansion:
4th Grade Georgia State Standards  

8th Grade Georgia State Standards  

US History Georgia State Standards

The Old Governor's Mansion was home to eight Georgia governors from 1839 until 1868. Governor Joseph E. Brown was one of the most outstanding. He served as Georgia's governor during three important periods of history: the Antebellum period, the Civil War and the beginning of Reconstruction. He also served more consecutive terms than any other Georgia governor.

In November 1864, the Mansion served as headquarters for Union General William T. Sherman. Sherman's "March to the Sea" brought 30,000 Union soldiers into Milledgeville.

After the capital moved to Atlanta in 1868, the Mansion was used as a barracks for Georgia Military College cadets. Since 1889, the Mansion has been a part of what is now Georgia College. An intensive research project has been completed on the building and its inhabitants for the ongoing historic restoration. Your students will be able to see evidence of this research by viewing the 19th century construction of the building.

The Old Governor's Mansion achieved National Historic Landmark status in 1973. This honor reflects the Mansion's high style Greek Revival architecture as well as its close association with nationally important events.

More information can be found the front page of the website.

About Your Class Tour 
A docent trained in working with large groups of children will guide you and your students through the Mansion. Our docents are highly knowledgeable about the Mansion, the governors who lived here, the important historic events that took place here and  its construction and restoration. Emphasis will also be placed on the importance of historic preservation in conserving our historic building. Additionally, students are encouraged to play active roles in the tour through questioning and dialog.

To arrange your school tour please visit our tour page.
For questions call 478-445-4545 or email at kierstin.veldkamp@gcsu.edumatt.davis@gcsu.edu, or molly.randolph@gcsu.edu

Classroom Materials

The materials included here are for your discretionary use as pre-visit, visit, and/or post-visit activities. These activities are not required, but they include valuable information for your students that you may find useful in preparing students for their visit to the Old Governor's Mansion. Activities for grades four, eight, and eleven are included, so please feel free to adapt them to meet the individual needs of your students.

Bring the Mansion to your classroom! Check out our “Life During the Civil War”  traveling trunk and taking learning to the next level. Use it to support your own lesson plans or use it with our lesson plans over civil war soldiers, shifting gender roles, and the civilian war experience. Lesson are tailored to Social Studies Georgia State Standards of Excellence for grades 4, 8, and US History. Over 40 items and primary source documents such as civil war soldier uniforms, reproduction union and confederate money, and cooking utensils are included in the trunk. We have also included several books, at various reading levels, to promote and increase literacy. Rental time for the trunk is 2 weeks and only costs $25. There is free pick up and drop off at the Mansion but shipping options are available. For more details or questions contact Kierstin Veldkamp, Curator of Education, by calling 478-445-4545 or emailing kierstin.veldkamp@gcsu.edu. To reserve the traveling trunk, click the blue button at the bottom and fill out the request form and Georgia's Old Governor's Mansion will contact you with a confirmation. 

Please review our Traveling Trunk Rules and Regulations

See what’s included in the trunk: Traveling Trunk Object List

Request the “Life During the Civil War” Traveling Trunk

Greek Architecture Pre-Visit Lesson Plan

  • This lesson is designed for 3rd grade based on the Georgia Performance Standards for the 2015-2016 school year. This lesson is in conjunction with the "Greek Architecture Post-visit Lesson Plan" located under the Post-Visit Suggested Activities tab. It would best be served as a pre-visit lesson to a field trip to the Mansion but could also serve as a stand alone lesson over Greek architecture. 

Journey through the Mansion Activity Book

  • This activity book is designed for young learns and includes coloring pages and other activities over the Mansion. It could serve as an introduction to the Mansion before a visit or field trip but can also just be a fun resource for any child. 

A Day in the Life of an American Slave  

Slavery: A Dark Cloud over American History  

Georgia Governors 1839-1868 Word Search  

Dot-to-Dot of the Old Governor's Mansion  

Flags of the Confederacy    

Flags of the Old Governor's Mansion    

Mansion Item Scavenger Hunt

  • This is geared towards younger children and helps them take more of an active role in the normal Mansion tour. This is available for any child on any tour, just ask your tour docent for more details. 

Architectural Scavenger Hunt  

Lighting, Heating, and Cooling the Mansion without Electricity  

Greek Architecture Post-Visit Lesson Plan

  • This lesson is designed for 3rd grade based on the Georgia Performance Standards for the 2015-2016 school year. This lesson is in conjunction with the "Greek Architecture Pre-Visit Lesson Plan" located under the Pre-Visit Suggested Activities tab. It would best be served as follow up lesson to a field trip to the Mansion. 

The Old Governor's Mansion Crossword Puzzle  

It's All Greek to Me  

The Old Governor's Mansion: Where History Lives   

Floor Plan Activity  

1857 Letter from Elizabeth Brown to her Mother   

Quotes and Thoughts on Slavery, Freedom, and the Human Spirit    

Facebook and Twitter Accounts from the Civil War   

The following lesson plans should be used at the teacher's professional discretion according to the needs and capabilities of each individual class. These lesson plans are useful before or after a visit and need not be completed in order.

The documents that are presented for your use in the classroom have suggested lesson plans that can be modified to suit the ability and interest level of your students. Each lesson has been coordinated with the Georgia Standards of Excellence (GSE) for Social Studies that begin in the 2017-2018 school year. We primarily focused on 4th and 8th grades and US History since those standards align closest to our museum. Feel free to adapt lessons to fit your students' needs and grade level as necessary. More lessons will be added as they are created. 

Sherman's March to the Sea and Milledgeville

  • In this lesson students learn about Sherman's March to the Sea primarily focusing on his stop in Milledgeville and his stay at Georgia's Old Governor's Mansion. This would serve well as a pre or post visit lesson for a field trip to the Mansion.

Life of a Civil War Solider

  • There was much more to the life of a Civil War solider than just marching and fighting. This lesson explores the other aspects to a soldiers life not usually talked about such as camp life.

The Civilian Experience and the Civil War

  • All facets of life were affected by the Civil War which didn't apply only to soldiers fighting in it but also to all those left behind at home. This lesson plan explores how different areas of life were affected by the war.

Shifting Gender Roles

  • In this lesson students explore how the roles of men and women changed as a side effect of the Civil War. Students primarily look at shifting gender roles though objects from the period.


*The lesson plans themselves are the property of the Old Governor's Mansion in Milledgeville, Ga. and may be freely used for non-profit educational purposes only.