Cyclorama: The Big Picture Opening Weekend

Cyclorama: The Big Picture Opening Weekend

Opening 127 years to the day since it first debuted in Atlanta, the restored The Battle of Atlanta cyclorama painting is the centerpiece of this multimedia experience. This 132-year-old hand-painted work of art stands 49 feet tall, is longer than a football field, weighs 10,000 pounds, and is only one of two cycloramas in the United States. The 1886 painting was a visual story about the Battle of Atlanta, but over time it has evolved into an artifact with its own fascinating story. Now, the painting’s historical journey is an example of how memory and interpretation can be shaped, or misshaped, by a combination of history, myth, art, entertainment, images, marketing, and cultural context during different eras. Cyclorama: The Big Picture is designed to offer a 360-degree perspective of our shared history through the lens of Atlanta’s largest painting.  


Due to capacity and the timed audio-visual presentation on the viewing platform, we highly recommend securing advance tickets to view the painting. Reserved tickets are valid for the date and time selected, but visitors are encouraged to spend time in the exhibition before and after viewing the painting. Tickets include full access to Atlanta History Center.  

Learn more on our FAQ.  


Approximately 100 walk-up tickets are available daily. Walk-up ticket sales begin at 10:00am. The first show begins at 10:30am, but your timed experience may not be until later in the day. Tickets are timed and availability varies each day.  

Learn more on our FAQ.  


Meet the Past Museum Theatre: Untold Stories

Discover little known stories of struggles and triumphs throughout history with our robust museum theatre program. Make sure to also explore Smith Farm and discover stories of enslavement and resistance through museum theatre performances, dialogues, and open hearth cooking demonstrations. Smith Farm will be open until 4:30pm on the 22nd-24th.   

10:30am, 11:30am, 12:30pm, 2:30pm, 3:30pm, 4:30pm
Duration: 15 minutes  

Join a paperboy in 1906 as he educates new recruits on the “tricks of the trade” while highlighting the challenges he encountered as a witness to the Atlanta Race Riots.  

Gertie Stewart
1:15pm, 2:15pm, 3:15pm, 4:15pm
Duration: 15 minutes  

Gertie Stewart is preparing to take the Syracuse rail yard to court for refusing to promote her because of her gender, learn of her challenges and that of other women railroaders. Based on the true story of Irene M. Ingison.  

“Clay: Palm to Earth”: The story of David Drake
1:00pm, 2:00pm, 3:00pm, 4:00pm
Duration: 15 minutes  

This Meet the Past performance dramatizes the story of noted South Carolina potter Dave Drake. Born enslaved in 1801, Drake—who came to be known as Dave the Potter—was taught to turn large clay pots and learned to read and write, often signing much of his pottery and inscribing them with poems, revealing his literacy at a time when it was illegal for a slave to read and write. This performance explores the notion of literacy as a form of resistance, and its impact on the shaping of one’s identity. 

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