ABOUT US

Recognized by the SC Federation of Museums as the 2007, 2012, and 2015 Achievement Award Winner and in 2008 designated with the Heritage Tourism Award from the SC Archives and History Department, Belton Area Museum Association (BAMA) strives to make history come alive with presentations of interactive exhibits and engaging historical topics.

Several yearly events are sponsored by BAMA: The Community-Wide Craft and Rummage Sale, an Antique Show and Market, a genealogy workshop, community Christmas festivities, and Heritage Days at the Depot. Our staff and board members are also instrumental in the planning and implementation of the Belton Standpipe Heritage and Arts Festival, the SC State Chili Cook-Off
Championships, and the Palmetto Junior Tennis Tournament.   We are also a stop on the SC National Heritage Corridor.

Openings of exhibits with ancillary activities, trunk show presentations in area classrooms, walking tours of Belton, summer camps for children, and participation in community events—all help our staff and volunteers achieve our mission and highlight our facility.

The museums are open free of charge to the public on Wednesday – Friday, 9 AM – 2 PM, and Saturday, 9 AM – 1 PM. Contact Abigail Burden, BAMA Director/Curator, during museum hours at 864-338-7400 or by email at beltonmuseum@bellsouth.net for more information.  Come visit us!

  • Our History


  • The Belton Area Museum Association was founded in 1975 by concerned citizens of Belton.  The organization’s purpose is to collect, exhibit, preserve, and interpret the artifacts, sites, antiquities, and genealogical, archival, cultural, and natural history of Belton, SC, Anderson County, SC and The State of South Carolina. BAMA also provides cultural enrichment, intellectual stimulation, learning opportunities, and activities to increase the appreciation of the traditional, visual, and performing arts.

    In order to achieve this mission, BAMA manages several museums and a community space and offers activities and events, free to the public.  The Belton Area Museum Association operates the Ruth Drake Museum, the SC Tennis Hall of Fame, the North End Gallery, a gift shop and a performance venue all housed in the historic Belton Train Depot. 

    Grants in 2007 and 2014 enabled us to renovate our 1908 building and bring its amenities up to 21st Century standards for accessibility and accommodation.

    The Belton Area Museum is divided into four segments: The Ruth Drake Museum, the SC Tennis Hall of Fame, the North End Gallery, and the Center Section Performance Hall.

    The Belton Area Museum Association is the community’s most valuable resource for the history of our area.  Come find out more about our shared heritage by visiting today.

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Join us Sunday, Jan. 21, from 3 – 5 PM for the opening celebration of the Belton Area Museum Association’s newest exhibit, Las Artes Decorativas: The Art and Artifacts of Spain, as part of the Anderson International Festival Mucho Gusto, Espana!

On Sunday, guests can view the exhibit which features furniture, coins, jewelry, tiles, metalwork, textiles, and artwork with Spanish origins.

Featuring handcrafts from the various regions of Spain, the collection of secular and religious artifacts will show the varied influences—Moorish, Flemish, and Italian—that make Spanish decorative arts unique.

Also in the exhibit are artifacts from Spain’s storied past. See items from the time Rome ruled Spain, and most of Europe, to the era when Spain ruled much of the New World.

As a special treat, Sean and Chris Ellis will bring their Spanish ponies, descended from the ponies the Spanish explorers brought with them to the New World. Children will have the opportunity to paint handprints on the ponies, much as the Native Americans did when the Spaniards left the ponies in America.

There will be crafts for children, cultural entertainment, and snacks with a Spanish flare for all visitors.

The exhibit and opening are free to the public, thanks to the sponsorship of the City of Belton HTAX and Anderson County ATAX.

Founded in Anderson, SC in 2006, the Anderson International Festival (AIF) is a biennial festival featuring films, exhibits, performances, lectures and much more designed to foster a deeper understanding of international culture. Previous events have included : 2006- Torzhesva!-A Russian Festival; 2008- Slainte!- A Celtic Celebration; 2010- Nkonsonkonso!- West African Festival; 2012- Joie de Vivre!- A French Celebration; 2014- Youkoso!- A Celebration of Japan; 2016- Ciao, Italia!- An Italian Celebration.

The exhibit will be on display during museum hours (Wednesday – Friday, 9 AM – 2 PM, and Saturday, 9 AM – 1 PM) or by appointment until April 14. Please call Abigail Burden, BAMA Executive Director, at 864-338-7400 or email beltonmuseum@bellsouth.net for more information.
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Little Miss / Miss Chili Pepper Pageant

April 14, 2018, 11:00am - April 14, 2018, 2:00pm

You can contact the following people with questions or concerns: • Amy_Alley@hotmail.com (Amy Alley) • Mbrannan2@gmail.com (Melissa Brannan) • Britt6lea@aol.com (Brittany McKinsey) Application can be found at www.scchilicookoff.com Little Miss / Miss Chili Pepper Pageant Saturday, April 14th, 2018 Belton-Honea Path High School Auditorium * 2 OVERALL Beauty winners will receive a $100 CASH prize!! Fees: • $45 Entry Fee (mandatory) • Optional $10 Photogenic … Color or B/W (2 photos MAX) • Optional $15 Themewear … Spring Theme • ALL-IN FEE $60 (Beauty, Photogenic, & Themewear) $10 savings ***EARLY BIRD Entry… $55 (All categories) due on or before March 16th (PayPal Only)*** ***FINAL deadline is April 7th, 2018. This includes competition fees and sweetheart monies*** Ways to Win: 1) Divisional Winners *Divisions based on age the day of pageant. - Baby Miss (0 – 11 months) - Toddler Miss (One Year Olds) - Wee Miss (Two Year Olds) - Tiny Miss (Three Year Olds) - Little Miss (Ages 4-5) - Darling Miss (Ages 6-7) - Petite Miss (Ages 8-9) - Young Miss (Ages 10-12) - Junior Miss (Ages 13-15) - Teen Miss (Ages 16-18) - Master Division (Ages 0-9) … must have a minimum of 3 contestants * Division winners will receive a crown and sash 2) Optionals: - Optional Photogenic Entry: $10 (color and/or black & white) - Optional Spring Themewear Entry: $10 * 1 OVERALL Photogenic winner & 1 OVERALL Themewear winner 3) Sweetheart Ambassadors - Any contestants raising at least $30 will receive an award - The contestant that raises the most money will be crowned Little Miss / Miss Chili Pepper Sweetheart Ambassador 4) People’s Choice Awards - Contestant with the most People’s Choice donations during entry of pageant from guests will win Crown and Sash Awards.

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