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Customs House Museum teams with American Red Cross to Celebrate 140 Years of the Red Cross

Customs House Museum & Cultural CenterClarksville, TN – On May 21st, 1881, 140 years ago, Clara Burton founded the American Red Cross on the basis of wanting to help others in distress. Barton risked her life to bring supplies and support to soldiers in the field during the Civil War.

Over the last 140 years, the American Red Cross has expanded to provide many services to members of the American armed forces and their families, as well as provide disaster relief in the United States and around the world.

Customs House Museum and Cultural Center's Red Cross exhibit "Helping Americans Help Themselves: 140 Years of the Red Cross".
Customs House Museum and Cultural Center’s Red Cross exhibit “Helping Americans Help Themselves: 140 Years of the Red Cross”.

These services include blood donations, emergency, and safety training, and international volunteerism.

Clarksville’s local chapter, the American Red Cross of Tennessee River, serves 12 counties from Kentucky to Alabama along the Tennessee River and is full of rich history. The local chapter was founded in May 1917 by Carrie Johnson, a school teacher, and granddaughter of Postmaster General Cave Johnson.

The Customs House Museum and Cultural Center has partnered with the local Red Cross chapter to tell the history of the Red Cross in the exhibit Helping Americans Help Themselves: 140 Years of the Red Cross.

American Red Cross Blood Drive
American Red Cross Blood Drive

The exhibit contains an expansive history of the Red Cross, many artifacts and uniforms that tell the Red Cross story and feature a video that highlights local stories. The exhibit is located in the Museum’s Kimbrough Gallery and will be up through July 18th.

The Museum is also hosting a unique anniversary blood drive on May 21st to celebrate the Red Cross and raise awareness about the importance of giving blood. “Giving blood is a chance to save lives,” says Pamela Holz, Executive Director of the local Red Cross chapter. “You can be a part of Red Cross history that has helped millions of people by donating blood.”



The Museum has open spaces available for the Friday, May 21st and Wednesday, July 21st blood drives, from 10:00am–3:00pm. Schedule your appointment by calling 1.800.RED.CROSS (1.800.733.2767) or visit RedCrossBlood.org and enter “CustomsHouse.”

About the Customs House Museum

Customs House Museum and Cultural CenterLocated in the heart of historic downtown Clarksville, Tennessee, the Customs House Museum and Cultural Center is the State’s second largest general museum. The original portion of the building was constructed in 1898 as a U.S. Post Office and Customs House for the flourishing tobacco trade. Incorporating a number of architectural styles, the original structure is one of the most photographed buildings in the region.

With over 35,000 square feet of the region’s best hands-on activities and special events…people of all ages agree – the Customs House Museum is well worth the stop!

The Explorer’s Gallery is packed with fun, learning and fantasy in Aunt Alice’s Attic, McGregor’s Market and kitchen, and of course – the Bubble Cave! Finally, get “all aboard” to see our fantastic model trains. Our volunteer engineers “ride the rails” every Sunday afternoon from 1:00pm to 4:00pm.

Regular museum hours are 10:00am to 5:00pm Tuesday through Saturday, and 1:00pm to 5:00pm on Sundays. Adult admission is $7.00, Senior Citizens and College ID $5.00, Ages 6 to 18 $3.00, and under six years and Museum members are free.

The Customs House Museum is located at 200 South Second Street. For more information, call 931.648.5780 or visit their website at www.customshousemuseum.org


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