Few U.S. Presidents have had such close ties with where they were born and raised. The rural southern culture of Plains, Georgia, that revolves around farming, church and school, had a large influence in molding the character and in shaping the political policies of the 39th President of the United States.
The site includes President Carterís residence, boyhood farm, school, and the railroad depot, which served as his campaign headquarters during the 1976 election. The Plains High School serves as the parkís museum and visitor center. The Jimmy Carter National Preservation District includes part of the town of Plains and its environs. The area surrounding the residence is under the protection of the Secret Service and the home is not open to the public.
The Carters returned to Plains in January 1981. The former President and First Lady pursue many of the goals of the administration through The Carter Presidential Center in Atlanta, which has programs to alleviate human suffering and to promote human rights and world peace. When they are in Plains, Carter teaches Sunday school at Maranatha Baptist Church to which the public is invited. The Cartersí ties to Plains have endured the stresses of public life, remaining as strong as they were decades ago.
Plains Depot-1976 Carter Presidential Campaign Headquarters - The building contains a self-guided museum with exhibits focusing on the 1976 Presidential campaign. It is open daily from 9:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. It served as a train depot from 1888 to 1951, when passenger service was discontinued. The building was opened in 1976 as Jimmy Carterís Presidential Campaign Headquarters for the 1976 Presidential campaign. During the 1976 campaign, approximately 10,000 people a day came to Plains to find out about the candidate Carter. Many state primary victories, as well as the Presidential victory, were held in the streets around the depot. The Plain Depot-1976 Presidential Headquarters, is located in the downtown area of Plains on Main Street. (229) 824-4104.
Plains High School - The Plains High School serves as the park museum/visitor center. Visitors find a restored and furnished classroom, principalís office, and auditorium; other rooms feature exhibits that explain the Carters' lives in Plains, including political and business careers, education, family, religion, and post-presidency. The story of the park is told in a 25-minute audio-visual presentation in the auditorium and through the site brochures. The museum also includes an audio-visual tour by Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter of their house. The Plains High School/Visitor Center is located on north Bond Street in Plains. (229) 824-4104.
The Jimmy Carter Boyhood Farm - Jimmy Carter lived here from the age of four until he departed for college. The farm is restored to its appearance in 1937 before electricity was installed. The 360-acre farm was owned by Earl Carter, Jimmyís father, from 1928 until the late 1940s. The National Park Service now maintains 17 acres which includes the boyhood home and commissary. Other facilities are restored and reconstructed such as the barn, buggy shed, pump house, tennis court, tenant houses, and blacksmith shop. The park also includes a new entrance road and sign, parking area, comfort station, walking trails, and exhibits. The Jimmy Carter Boyhood Farm is located 3 miles outside of the town of Plains in the community of Archery. 229) 824-4104.