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The Arts Council Depot was built in 1914 as one of the only two-story railroad passenger stations in northeast Georgia. The building operated as a passenger station for the Jefferson and Southern Railroad until its purchase by the Gainesville Midland Railroad.
In the 1940’s passenger service began to wane and the facility was converted into a freight depot. It was a working freight depot for the Gainesville Midland Railroad and later under CSX Railroad until its purchase by the Arts Council in 1992.
The Arts Council renovated the original structure and added two additional buildings. Additions were made to the depot to give it a grand entrance with beveled glass doors and crystal chandelier. To honor one of the major benefactors of the Arts Council, this facility was renamed from The Arts Council Depot to the Arts Council Smithgall Arts Center.
The Arts Council Smithgall Arts Center is now home to The Arts Council, Inc. and our Evenings of Intimate Jazz Series, Summer MusicFest, permanent art gallery and our recently completed sculpture garden. In addition to arts programming, the Arts Council Smithgall Arts Center is available for rent on a limited basis for special events including, weddings, receptions, parties, meetings and corporate functions.
We promote over 30 regional arts affiliates, present a broad spectrum of performing, visual and literary arts programs including our Arts Council Pearce Series™, Evenings of Intimate Jazz Series™, Summer MusicFest™, Arts in Schools™, Independent Filmmakers Series, and Movies on the Green™, and provide many services that support our mission to educate, enhance and expand public interest in the arts.