Museum Hours   |   Monday-Saturday: 9am – 5pm   |  Sunday: 2 pm – 5 pm

About us

The Ava Gardner Museum in historic downtown Smithfield, NC holds an extensive collection of artifacts from Ava Gardner's career and her private life. Experience Ava's rise from a local country girl to one of Hollywood's film goddeses.  Born seven miles east of Smithfield, Ava's friends and co-stars included Mickey Rooney (her first husband), Clark Gable, Gregory Peck and of course, Frank Sinatra (her third husband). 


  • To display the collection in an entertaining and educational manner for the edification of the general public
  • To constantly search for and acquire important pieces of Ava Gardner memorabilia – from her career as well as her life in Johnston County, NC
  • To preserve and restore the collection for future generations
  • To support the other organizations that preserve film history or promote Johnston County heritage.


The  Ava Gardner Museum is a private, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and depends on the generosity of Ava’s fans through membership, admission fees, gift shop sales, grants, and private contributions to continue its operations and service to the public.


Lynell Seabold Bookkeeper

Sarah Bryant-Owens Docent

Sue Bunn Docent

Marisa Balatico Docent 

Matthew McCarthy Interning


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