The Leon and Rachel Gathany Museum of Natural History
Leon Gathany developed a love for the outdoors in his youth and thus began collecting various types of artifacts. Leon and Rachel first met while students at Toccoa Falls College (TFC). They married in 1946 and were blessed with four children over the next 10 years. In 1964, the family moved back to TFC where Leon served as principal of the high school. Leon and Rachel Gathany both taught at Toccoa Falls Academy and later in the Stephens County School System. Rachel was also the founding director of the Stephens County Center for the Developmentally Disabled. After retirement, Leon combined his love of nature with his gift of teaching to become a Naturalist for the Georgia State Parks. In this new endeavor, he utilized his many collections to enhance the nature awareness programs he presented to campers. Rachel filled in occasionally and quickly became a crowd favorite. Their programming was soon requested by other organizations and the rest is history. With the establishment of the Leon and Rachel Gathany Museum of Natural History, the Gathany's legacy of enriching the lives of others by sharing their knowledge and love of God's creation lives on.