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Georgia Natural Wonder #244 - Rock Garden - Gordon County (Part 2)
Georgia Natural Wonder #244 - Rock Garden, Calhoun - Gordon County (Part 2)

We came to Gordon County with our visit to New Echota (GNW #202) the capital of the Cherokee Nation in the Southeast United States from 1825 to their forced removal in the late 1830s. We did a tangent on Chief Vann house, making that post about the Trail of Tears along Hwy. 225, even though that house was in Murray County. Now we found a second Natural Wonder (Sort of) in Gordon County and found we had 75 Historical Markers in Gordon County and 31 Communities, so we needed three Gordon County History Tangent Post. We added a tangent on the history of Gordon County with that earlier post, as we only found two other Natural Wonders for the County, and to be truthful, they are all sort of man-made Wonders. We moved the original segment of that post on the Chief Vann House to Murray County where it belonged (GNW #203).

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So here we are 42 post later, back in Gordon County, and I recently traveled with my daughter and her friend and her kids to a neat spot I had read about but never visited. The Rock Garden (also known as The Garden) in Calhoun, Georgia, is a garden filled with more than 50 miniature castles, churches, and other structures. The Garden, with its whimsical folk art, has become a local tourist attraction.

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The Notre Dame cathedral (right) and a castle (background) in the Calhoun Rock Garden


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"Old Dog," the creator of the Rock Garden, next to the model of the Notre Dame Cathedral in 2011

The Rock Garden grew out of a "Town Game" Dewitt Boyd played with his eight children, in which he would create a village of tiny houses and tiny alter-ego porcelain figures for each child to play with. Boyd chose Genghis Khan as his alternative persona. Each time the family moved, Boyd recreated the village.

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In 2007, Boyd started building the Rock Garden as the latest iteration of the Town Game. The Rock Garden is located beside a stream behind the Calhoun Seventh-Day Adventist church, where Boyd is a member. Boyd prefers to be called "Old Dog." He says he is "kind of a scoundrel" and working in the garden helps keep him out of trouble. 

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Boyd's children and grandchildren, as well as many other volunteers, have helped construct the miniature buildings.


Through trial and error, Boyd developed his current method of using cement reinforced with wire to build structures out of pebbles, shells, tiles, and broken glass and china. Previously, when Boyd and his family lived in the midwest, they built their miniature town out of clay but discovered that the structures broke into shards when they froze in the winter cold.

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The work is slow and labor-intensive. For example, the Notre Dame Cathedral took 27 months to build.


The Rock Garden contains miniature versions of several famous structures, including the following:

The cathedral of Notre Dame, complete with stained glass windows.

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The Japanese Himeji Castle.

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The Tulip trees were blooming at their peak.
The Colosseum.

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Colosseum Walking in the Park. TRD Nugget, Click and play while viewing rest of post.

Today, the rock garden is a family endeavor and has been crafted by Boyd, his children, and their children.

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In between the villages and structures are narrow cobblestone paths and bridges that people can walk on.

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It's all on the edge of the creek.

Each autumn, the Garden hosts an annual lighting ceremony where the castles and other miniature buildings are lit by candlelight.

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Boyd's wife, Joyce Maples, also works on the Garden and is responsible for the Memory Wall with clay hearts for each marriage ceremony that has taken place in the Garden.

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As of 2016, sixteen wedding ceremonies had taken place in the Garden, including one between Boyd and Joyce.

From Explore Georgia

This volunteer-built, folk art pleasance is a must-see! In addition to the acre of flowers and greenery, there is the captivating artistry of more than 50 diminutive buildings. The structures, all crafted from tiny stones, pebbles, shells, odd pieces of broken glass and china, rocks, ceramic tile, cement, wire and other materials, are designed to imitate their larger counterparts. 

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There are wee-sized churches, houses, castles, a monestary, cathedrals such as a structure modeled after the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris, France, with stained-glass windows; and minikin porcelain figures of people and animals, some as small as two inches. A real-people-sized music pavliion towers over it all, added to provide a place for music performances. Open daily from dawn to dusk.

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From Trip Adviser

Begun by two friends in 2007 as a place for meditation and prayer. The Structures are built from pebbles and cement as well as ornate stained glass. There are approximately 50 structures including the Notre Dame Cathedral, Dover Castle, and Rome Colosseum just to name a few. There are walking paths crisscrossing between the buildings with various seating areas and a gazebo. There is also a trail through the woods behind the garden. PLEASE NOTE: Climbing on the structures is not permitted as it could cause significant damage or even collapse.

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All the images from here are TRD's visit.


Absolutely Amazing. Peaceful, beautiful. 

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Entrance Castle, Submerged Creek-side Village, Bethlehem
Great for all ages if you can walk on narrow, uneven paths.

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The imagination and detail that went into creating these structures is incredible.

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I am thankful I found this special spot and highly recommend stopping by.

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It is only 5 miles off 75. The Buckee's Exit. It is free. We gave donation.

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Unique and beautiful

What a beautiful stop on our way to Chattanooga, TN. It was our first trip to Chattanooga and we saw this lovely rock garden was going to be on our way and so we made the stop. 

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We are so happy we did as we thought the garden was just gorgeous. 

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Such intricately made castles, homes and other figures. 

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It is free to visit, but it is a part of a church so donations are appreciated. If we find ourselves in that area again, we would stop to visit the Rock Garden.

From Atlas Obscura.

This wondrous rock garden tucked behind a church in Calhoun, Georgia, is full of miniature creations of iconic towns, castles, cathedrals, bridges, and even the Colosseum.

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Tough Gladiator until the beast was unleashed.

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He found the leash and left in control of beast. Notice the tree in rear, only branch left, holds swing. Cell Phone is still mightier than Rock Garden.

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The free garden is located behind the Calhoun Seventh Day Adventist Church, and there are religious themes to some of the constructions. 

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One of the towns represents Bethlehem; the Ten Commandments tablets are embedded, broken, in one of the walkways; and some other places have scriptures inscribed in walkways or walls.

Know Before You Go

The Rock Garden can be found behind the Calhoun Seventh Day Adventist Church on 1411 Rome Road.

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The garden is free to enter and can be visited by the public Monday through Sunday, from 8 am to 7 pm. For more information, you can follow the Rock Garden on their Facebook page.

Sam's Tree House

Another whimsical spot to visit in Calhoun is Sam's Treehouse.

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Early 2000's

A radical tree house behind an unsuspecting Mexican restaurant in Calhoun, Georgia. 

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“Sam’s Tree House.” seemed to have many livable compartments made from scrap (including: a plane, a helicopter, a boat, and a submarine movie prop).

A Few Highlights from Sam’s Tree House:

    Has a kitchen, bathroom, library, living room and at least two bedrooms
    One bedroom is located in the airplane and another in the ski boat
    The highest part of the structure is 25 feet tall
    One publication noted that Sam lives with seven wild cats and keeps a metal leg brace on the wall for decoration

Owned, built, and lived in by Sam Edwards, former aide to President Jimmy Carter. Sam has proved that anything can be dragged into a tree and lived in, including an airplane, a helicopter, and a submarine.

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This tree house is very unusual. It is multi-level and features a submarine prop from an 1960's Elvis movie, helicopter and more! Owned, built and lived in by Sam Edwards, author and adventurer, former aid to President Jimmy Carter. He wrote a book From the White House to the Out house to the Tree House.

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The airplane is a bedroom. 

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There is also a den, library, kitchen. He has to duck under the branches to get around in his home. It was also featured on a network TV program on unusual homes.

Chattanooga Free Times

CALHOUN, Ga.-Building a tree house is like painting a canvas, Sam Edwards says.

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The nearly 61-year-old Calhoun native - who has worked as a janitor, truck driver, actor, law student, disc jockey, cook, producer, carpenter and soldier, as well as served as an aide to President Jimmy Carter and to U.S. Sen. John Glenn of Ohio - built his home over the last two decades using all refurbished materials. It has been called the most well-known tree house in the world and been featured in dozens of books, magazines and TV shows. The tree is about 150 to 200 years old, according to tree experts.

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The Tree House is in bad shape now. Still worth a visit and some Mexican Food. at the Restaurant.

Gordon County (Part 2)

Again, we did a Gordon County (Part 1) tangent on Gordon County with (GNW #202). We covered the General History of Gordon County along with the National Register of Historic Places listings in Gordon County, Georgia.

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Now normally we would turn to the Historical Markers and Monuments of the County, but 58 of the 75 Markers pertain to the Civil War and we are going to feature the Civil War battle of Resaca as our third Gordon County Natural Wonder. We have chopped Gordon County up so much waiting 42 post between County Tangents, we may as well mix it up some more and leave the Historical Markers for our last post. We move up our discussions on Communities and Notable People to this second Gordon County Post.




Calhoun is a city in Gordon County, Georgia, United States. As of the 2020 census, the city had a population of 16,949. Calhoun is the county seat of Gordon County. Calhoun, earlier called Oothcaloga Depot and Dawsonville, lies in the valley that was the heart of the Cherokee Nation......

Found all these old vintage images.

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Left: Gordon County. Oothcaloga Moravian Mission located on Belwood Road near Belwood School south of Calhoun. It was operated 1822-1833 by the Moravian Church to provide education and religious instruction to the Cherokee Indians. John Gambold came from Spring Place in Murray County to establish the mission. This structure had been built in 1821 by John Crutchfield and was sold in 1822 to the Moravians. By 1833 white families occupied the house as a result of the Cherokee Land Lottery of 1832. Left: 1915. Interior of Oothcalooga Depot. Will Brown, seated at front right, was the railroad agent. Other employees are also pictured. The depot was served by the Western & Atlantic Railroad.

and the site of a major Civil War (1861-65) battle.

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Entrance to Confederate Cemetery.

Today it is the center of northwest Georgia’s huge textile industry.

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Cotton was King - Cotton and the Courthouse - Wagon Loads of Cotton - Lumber too.

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1903. This public school was located on College Street and completed in 1903. J.W. Golucke was the architect. The cost was $6000.00. The two-story brick building served students in grades 1-9, the only grades offered at that time. In 1917 after a building to house high school students was constructed adjacent to it, elementary students continued to attend it. In 1974 the First Baptist Church acquired the College Street property. The buildings were demolished to make way for the First Baptist Church which was completed in 1976.


In December 1827, Georgia had already claimed the Cherokee lands that became Gordon County and other counties. A small town called "Dawsonville" was created and founded in Gordon County, named for the owner of an early general store. Dawsonville was later renamed "Calhoun" to honor U.S. Senator John C. Calhoun, following his death in 1850. The name change occurred amidst political controversy in which “Calhounites” were a strong sectionalist faction.

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From Covered Bridges to Railroad Bridges.

Gordon County's inferior court called an election for the selection of the county seat, offering voters a choice between a site on the Western & Atlantic Railroad (near Adairsville) or a site more centrally located within the county. Voters chose a site along the railroad, so the inferior court designated Calhoun as county seat in 1851. The legislature incorporated Calhoun in an act approved on January 12, 1852.

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On January 5, 1861, Georgia seceded from the Union as a prelude to the American Civil War. Calhounians joined the Confederacy. 

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Barnett Hotel - Calhoun Hotel.

Most warfare took place elsewhere, but on May 16, 1864, Calhoun was near where the Union General William Tecumseh Sherman and Confederate General Joseph E. Johnston postured before the Battle of Adairsville during Sherman's Atlanta Campaign. Oakleigh, the home of Dr. Wall, was used by Sherman as his headquarters at that time.

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Calhoun. People shown in front of Haynes House located on Court Street and built in 1885. The hotel was also known as the Rankin House. Note the railroad tracks in front of the building. It was razed in the 1960s.

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Hotel Rooker located on North Wall Street was built in 1935. It was operated by members of the Rooker family. An earlier Hotel Rooker had been located one block west of the Oothcaloga Depot.

A tornado on March 20, 1888, leveled much of Calhoun. A devastating fire on October 23 of that year destroyed most of what remained.

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Group on Boaz Hill 1901. Frozen Fountain Gentlemen s Park.

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Jesse Johnson House 1910. McCollum Home 1907. King Saxon House 1880's - Demolished now, Service Station there.

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1903. Home of Thomas Witherspoon Harbin located on North Wall Street was built in the 1890s. Mr. Harbin served as Ordinary of Gordon County 1892-1904 and from 1915-1917 was elected a senator in the Georgia General Assembly from the 43rd district. He was one of the promoters and the first president of the Echota Cotton Mill, organized in 1907.

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Echota Cotton Mills, the first of many textile mills in the region, was established in 1907. 

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1918. Crowd stands around after an unidentified black man was lynched.

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W. Laurens Hillhouse was 1st Mayor of Calhoun at old City Hall / Courthouse.

Calhoun grew as transportation opened outlets for manufactured and agricultural goods. 

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W.P. Kiker Dry Goods 1911. Haney and Tinsley, a Men's Store 1910.

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1912 Train Derailment.

The Dixie Highway, now U.S. Highway 41, was built through the town in 1917. 

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Paving South Street Paving Court Street 1918.

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July 4, 1926. Automobile parade along Court Street as part of the July 4th festivities. Note the flags which have been displayed and note some of the businesses that can be seen.

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1928. Crowd and automobiles gather in Calhoun for parade and other festivities connected with the opening of the Dixie Highway between Atlanta and Chattanooga. Once completed a direct route between Chicago and Miami would be achieved. Tall structure in right background is Gordon County Courthouse.

As the textile business boomed in northwest Georgia, the highway became known as Peacock Alley.

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It's roadside lined with colorful chenille bedspreads for sale to northerners on their way back from their winter trips to Florida. 

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1918 South Street and Calhoun overview.

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1930's Calhoun.

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July 17, 1942. Citizens gather to watch as 57 men leave Calhoun for the army during World War II. The men are standing in front of the two Greyhound buses which will take them away.

Since the mid twentieth century Interstate 75 has been a vital link to nearby Atlanta and Chattanooga, Tennessee.

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Calhoun today.

Calhoun is located west of the center of Gordon County along the Oostanaula River where it is joined by Oothkalooga Creek. It is part of the Coosa River/Alabama River watershed.

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Women's Club - Tullie Smith House moved to Atlanta History Center

U.S. Route 41 passes through the center of town as Wall Street, and Interstate 75 runs along the eastern edge of the city, with access from Exits 310, 312, 315, 317, and 318. I-75 leads north 49 miles to Chattanooga, Tennessee, and south 68 miles to Atlanta. US-41, running parallel to I-75, leads north 5 miles to Resaca and south 10 miles to Adairsville.

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Buc-ee’s Calhoun is located at 601 Union Grove Road, just off of I-75.

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A 53,200-square-foot one-stop for travelers, featuring homemade Texas barbecue, fudge, and pastries, and several varieties of world-famous jerky for those humans who need a little fuel, and 120 gas pumps outside for the automobiles that need some. 

Museums and other points of interest

We already covered the Rock Garden and Sam's Treehouse above. We covered the New Echota Historic Site with (GNW #202).

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Roland Hayes Museum at the Harris Arts Center.

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Oakleigh/Gordon County Historical Society.

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Sherman said to have stayed here but there is no evidence either through town history or Sherman's memoirs that can support this claim.
Calhoun Outlet Marketplace

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Among the 50 brand name outlet stores are Ann Taylor, American Eagle Outfitters, Nike,The Children's Place, and Van Heusen, at savings of 25% to 65% every day.
Phil Reeve Stadium

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Calhoun football home games are played at Phil Reeve Stadium on the school campus near downtown. The stadium is named for C.P. "Phil" Reeve, the guitar player and founding member of the Georgia Yellow Hammers, an early 20th-century "old-time" band from Gordon County. The Jackets won their first football state title since the 1952 season in 2011 with a 27–24 overtime victory against Buford. The Yellow Jackets won 19 straight region titles (2001–2018), and made the Georgia State Football Playoffs every year since the 2000 season until the 2023 season. State championships - 1952 (class C), 2011 (AA), 2014 (AAA), 2017 (AAA).

Fairmount is a city in Gordon County, Georgia, United States. A post office called Fairmount has been in operation since 1850. 

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Downtown Fairmont

The city was named after Fairmont, West Virginia. People who came from Virginia about 1849 settled along the Cherokee and Cass County Line becoming known as Little Virginia colony.

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Fairmount City Hall - Courtroom - Police Department - Library.

The railroad brought freight and passengers to town along with improved mail service. There were two hotels in town, the Keffee and Dorroh Hotels to give travelers a place to stay.

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Vintage images Depot and street scene outside Drug Store.

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Bridge, Spanning Pine Log Creek on County Road 220, Fairmount, Gordon County.

Phillip Tate married Edna Ferguson on July 2nd, 1901. They moved to Fairmount on April 19, 1907, when Mr. Tate started working at the Bank. He later became President of the Fairmount Bank and when he died his wife Edna Tate was elected to take his place. Making her the first woman bank president in Georgia if not the nation. She held this position for 20 years. 

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Fairmont Tate house and Dean Tate.

Their Son, William Tate, was born on September 1st, 1903 in Calhoun Ga. He attended Fairmount High School and the Georgia Military Academy graduating in 1920. He then attended the University of Georgia receiving his A. B. Degree in 1924 and then his M. A. in 1927. He finished his graduate work at Columbia, Harvard and the University of Chicago. He then became a teacher at the University of Georgia where he would become Dean of Men in 1946. A position he held until 1971 making him possibly the most famous of all people from Fairmount.

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Tate Center UGA.
As of the 2010 census it had a population of 720.


Plainville is a city located in Gordon County, Georgia. Established in 1868, Plainville sits in the southwest corner of Gordon County.  It is perhaps best known as the home of the Plainville Brick Company. 

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Brick Company then and today.

Plainville was incorporated in 1903. The name is a transfer from Plainville, Connecticut.

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Plainville, GA Bank and General Store across from City Hall. The population of Plainville was 313 at the 2010 census, up from 257 at the 2000 census.


Resaca is a town in Gordon County, Georgia, United States, with unincorporated areas extending into Whitfield County. Resaca lies along the Oostanaula River. The population was 544 at the 2010 census. It is home to the Resaca Confederate Cemetery (Battle of Resaca) and a monastery.

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Resaca, 1905. Home of Joseph Daniel Johnson built in 1897. The S.H. Sutherland family later occupied the home. Left to right: Vera and Jewell Johnson, Joseph Daniel Johnson, Mrs. Lina Barnett Johnson, Floyd Johnson.


Resaca, originally known as Dublin, was founded in 1848 with the arrival of the Western and Atlantic Railroad into the area. 

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Dublin was renamed Resacca (with two Cs) when it was incorporated as a town in 1854. In 1871, the spelling of the town was shortened to its present form of Resaca.

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The town was named by returning Mexican–American War inductees who fought at the Battle of Resaca de la Palma (translated Dry River Bed of the Palms) in Brownsville, Texas, in 1846.

Civil War era

The Civil War Battle of Resaca was fought in and around Resaca in May 1864. Each year a re-enactment of the Battle of Resaca, the first battle of the Atlanta Campaign, is held on the third weekend of May.

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Painting depicting the Battle of Resaca

Resaca is also the location of the first Confederate cemetery in the state of Georgia.  

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The story of the cemetery is:

The memory of a Georgia woman, Mary J. Green, who with her own hands gathered and interred the bones and bodies of the Confederate dead left lying on the Resaca Battlefield, should always be sacred to us. The sight that greeted the Green family when they returned to their plantation after the battle was almost more than they could bear. Around the house on all sides were scattered graves of Confederates who had been buried where they fell. The Green daughters conceived the idea of collecting all the bodies and re-interring them in a plot of land to be known as a Confederate cemetery. The one great drawback, however, was that they had no money. In the summer of 1866, Mary began writing to her friends around the state, begging them to try and raise money for the cemetery. Although poverty was rampant in the South, the citizenry responded by giving what they could, be it a nickel, a dime, a quarter, or a dollar. Col. Green gave his daughters 2.5 acres of land with rustic bridges spanning the stream through the grounds of their cemetery.

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The account of the first Memorial Day, October 25, 1866, written by Mary Green: "The day selected for the dedication ... was bright and beautiful, one of those charming days of our Indian summers where no sound was heard save the fluttering of falling leaves – a suitable accompaniment to our sad thoughts, as we stood in the 'bivouac of the dead.'" This cemetery and one at Winchester, Virginia, were consecrated and dedicated on the same day, each sponsoring group thinking theirs was the first Confederate Cemetery.

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Mathew Brady captured several photographs of the battlefield. Scenes of the conflict and.its aftermath were also depicted by various artists including Adolph Metzner.

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Adolph Metzner depiction of a view inside a confederate fortification at Resaca.

20th century

The Town of Resaca was incorporated and granted a charter by the State of Georgia in 1981.

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Resaca at US 41 and SR 136.

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Resaca today.


Resacas are former channels of the Rio Grande. There are two explanations for the origin of the word "resaca." The less likely holds that it is a contraction of Spanish rio seco ("dry river"). The other is that the word stems from the Spanish resacar ("to retake"), since the primary geological function of a resaca seems to be diversion and dissipation of floodwater from the river. 

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TRD and family and friends float the Rio Grande at Big Bend National Park. TRD taking photo.

Resacas are naturally cut off from the river, having no inlet or outlet. Vernacular northern Mexican and other Latin American Spanish dialects translate 'resaca' as 'hangover' - undoubtedly referencing the dry cotton-mouth condition the morning after heavy alcohol consumption - as a 'dry river bed.'


Since 1977, the Resaca area has been the home of the Monastery of the Glorious Ascension, housed in the former midcentury modern hilltop residence purchased from the late Thurman Chitwood, local entrepreneur and ordained minister in the Church of Christ. The monastery is the only Orthodox Christian monastery in the state of Georgia. At one time it offered hospice to those afflicted with AIDS. Local detractors, with unfounded fears of casual communicability of AIDS, unsuccessfully sought to have its permitting revoked.

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The monastery, just across the line in Whitfield County, maintains a cemetery for Orthodox Christians. It has been under the authority of various "national" jurisdictions, which is not uncommon for an Orthodox monastery. It is currently part of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia. The Abbot is Archimandrite Maximos Weimar


The Resaca Beach Poster Girl Contest, a swimsuit pageant at one time known throughout the South, was founded in the nearby city of Dalton in 1983 as a marketing gimmick of Conquest Carpet Mills, Inc. 

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The name is tongue-in-cheek, since there is no ocean for hundreds of miles, although it draws reference to a once popular bathing spot on the Oostanaula riverbank commonly deemed Resaca Beach. Local boosterism proclaims: "Resaca Beach – North Georgia's Gateway to the Gulf." The pageant, which launched the career of Whitfield County native Marla Maples, former spouse of real estate magnate Donald Trump, has been held intermittently since the mid-1980s, most recently in 2008.

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Unincorporated communities


Audubon is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. The community lies about 10 miles northeast of the county seat at Calhoun. A post office called Audubon was in operation from 1900 until 1911. The community was likely named for John James Audubon, the American ornithologist, naturalist, and painter.

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Near Audubon, 1912. Home of Franklin Pierce Lewis with members of the family standing in front. The home was built by Prof. Humphrey prior to the Civil War. Mr. Lewis purchased it and a farm in 1893. It is located on the Coosawattee River northeast of Calhoun. Mrs. Chester Glenn Lewis and the Joseph Wiley Moore family live in the home now.

Blackwood (also called Blackwood Springs) is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. A post office called Blackwood was established in 1884, and remained in operation until being discontinued in 1901. Blackwood was named in honor of a Native American (Indian) chief.

Bobo is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. A post office called Bobo was established in 1885, and remained in operation until it was discontinued in 1905.The name honors the Bobo family of settlers.

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Cash is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, Georgia, United States. Cash is located on County Road 373 east of Calhoun, and between Sonoraville and Red Bud. A post office called Cash was established in 1889, and remained in operation until being discontinued in 1903. The community took its name from a sign at the general store that read "Cash or nothing."

Colima is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. A post office called Colima was established in 1886, and remained in operation until being discontinued in 1909. The community was probably named after Colima, Mexico, in commemoration of the Mexican–American War.

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Colima Mexico and Colima Georgia.   

Crane Eater

Crane Eater is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. The community was named in honor of a Cherokee chief. Crane-Eater was full-blooded Cherokee raised in Gordon County ... Available land, census, and valuation records confirm this testimony... By the mid 1830's, Crane Eater and Sarah Keith were living in a one-room house with 12 acres of improved land. Crane Eater died between 1836 and 1840 and was buried on his property. During the Cherokee Removal in 1838 his widow Sarah Keith elected to remain in Gordon County with their half-Cherokee children. The two-story frame house on the Crane Eater home site still stands...

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A post office called Crane-Eater was established in 1880, and remained in operation until being discontinued in 1906.

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Crane Eater, 1910-1920. Spring house on the farm of Joseph Emerson Brown. Brown, who had served as Governor of Georgia 1857-1865, used the farm as his summer home in the 1870s. It was located on the Coosawattee River east of Calhoun. Crane Eater was the early name of the town of Red Bud.

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Crane Eater, early 1900s. This residence served as a summer home for Joseph Emerson Brown family in the 1870s. Brown had served as Governor of Georgia 1857-1865. Later Columbus L. "Lum" Moss owned the home and the farm that went with it. The home was demolished in 1974.

Curryville (formerly called Little Row) is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. An early variant name was "Little Row", after a local Native American leader. A post office was established as Little Row in 1883, renamed Curryville in 1895, and discontinued in 1955. The present name honors David W. Curry, a local pharmacist. Roland Hayes, a composer and celebrated lyric tenor, was born in Curryville.

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Damascus is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, Georgia, United States. Damascus is located at the intersection of I-75/SR 401 and US 41/SR 3 north of Calhoun. It was named after the ancient city of Damascus.

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Damascus Road Damascus.

One of my dad's favorite dad jokes was told every year as we drove the 1960's and 1970's back road to Panama City Beach. There was the Early County town of Damascus. I reprise it for Gordon County Damascus. They had a town meeting about naming the city, they were about to agree on a name when the (Indians for Gordon County) in the back of the room said "damn ask us".

Decora is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. A post office called Decora was established in 1888, and remained in operation until being discontinued in 1905. Decora is a name derived from Latin, meaning "good behavior".

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Near Dew's Pond, ca. 1909. Students at Gum Springs School pose for a photograph in front of the school. The school was located east of Calhoun.

Farmville is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. A post office called Farmville was established in 1889, and remained in operation until being discontinued in 1907. The name is probably descriptive.

Fidelle is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. A post office called Fidelle was established in 1889, and remained in operation until being discontinued in 1908. The name is derived from Latin meaning "faithful".
Hill City

Hill City is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. Variant names were "Blue Spring", "Blue Springs", and "Miller". The present name is after the hilly terrain of the area. A post office called Blue Spring was established in 1870, the name was changed to Hill City in 1909, and the post office closed in 1956.
Lewis Corner

Lewis Corner is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. The community was named in honor of the Lewis family of settlers.
Lily Pond

Lily Pond is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. A post office called Lilly Pond was established in 1872, and remained in operation until being discontinued in 1910. The community was named after the lilly pads in a pond near the original town site.

McDaniels is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. The community was named after P. E. McDaniel, the original owner of the town site. The community post office was called "McHenry". This "McHenry" post office was in operation from 1888 until 1907.

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Home of A. R. McDaniel located at 303 Trammell Street was built by W. L. Hillhouse in 1908. It was constructed of rock. The Herbert King family occupies it now.
New Town

New Town is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, Georgia, United States, located northeast of Calhoun. New Town is near the New Echota historic site, which was formerly part of the Cherokee Nation. Ashworth Middle School and Gordon Central High School are located in the New Town community. New Town is the English translation of the historic Cherokee name, Ꭴꮝꮤꮎꮅ Ustanali. Alan Creek is a small stream located in New Town. It is a tributary of the Oostanaula River.

Nickelsville (formerly Nicholsville) is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. The community was named in honor of Lawrence Nichols. An early variant name was "Little Five Points"

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Oakman is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. A post office called Oakman has been in operation since 1908. The community was named for the "oak man", the nickname of a local lumber dealer. 

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The Georgia General Assembly incorporated Oakman in 1939; the town's municipal charter was repealed in 1995.

Oostanaula is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. A post office called Oostanaula was established in 1881, and remained in operation until being discontinued in 1920. Oostanaula is a name derived from the Cherokee language meaning "shoally river".

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Petersburg is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. A post office called Petersburg was established in 1886, and remained in operation until being discontinued in 1908. According to tradition, an early German settler named Peter gave the community his first name. A school and distillery once stood at the site.

Ranger is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, Georgia, United States. The population was 107 at the 2020 census, down from 131 in 2010. A post office called Ranger has been in operation since 1891. It is uncertain whether the town was named after Ranger, North Carolina, or the Confederate rangers. The Georgia General Assembly incorporated Ranger as a town in 1910. The town was dissolved on May 3, 2023, when Governor Brian Kemp signed HB 773, which passed in late March 2023, into law. This was a result of the town not providing police, utilities, business licenses, and in addition, not holding an election since 2005. Governmental services are now provided by Gordon County.

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Church Street Ranger Georgia.
Red Bud

Red Bud is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, Georgia, United States. A post office called Red Bud was established in 1852, and remained in operation until being discontinued in 1928. The community was named for a grove of red bud trees near the original town site.

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Reeves (formerly Reeves Station) is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. A post office called Reeves Station was established in 1870, renamed Reeves in 1903, and closed in 1954. The community was named for Osborn Reeves, the original owner of the town site.

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Horn Mountain seen from Reeves Station Road, Gordon County - Baugh Mountain is highest in county named for John Baugh, the first white settler of Sugar Valley.

Ryo is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. A post office called Ryo was in operation from 1894 until 1904. The name may be derived from Spanish, meaning "river".

Sonoraville is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, Georgia, United States, located seven miles outside Calhoun. A post office called Sonoraville was established in 1854, and remained in operation until being discontinued in 1909.

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The Sonoraville Phoenix.

The community was probably named after Sonora, in commemoration of the Mexican–American War.

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Hermosillo in the Mexican state of Sonora.

George Right Smith - (1837 - 1903), private in the Confederate Army elevated to the rank of 1st lieutenant. Born in Cartersville, he bought a farm after the war and settled with his new wife in Sonoraville. Buried at the now Sonoraville Baptist Church cemetery.

Soapstick is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. Soapstick was named from the fact many of the early settlers stirred homemade batches of soap with a stick.
Sugar Valley

Sugar Valley is an unincorporated community in Gordon County, Georgia, United States, northwest of Calhoun and east of Horn Mountain Ridge. 

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SR 136 runs through the center of the town. A post office called Sugar Valley has been in operation since 1844. The community may have been named after a grove of sugar maple trees near the original town site. The Georgia General Assembly incorporated Sugar Valley as a town in 1887. The town's municipal charter was repealed in 1995.

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Sugar Valley Georgia.

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West of Sugar Valley, early 1900s. Group of people, probably on an outing, poses for a photograph beside an artesian well. The well was located near Horn Mountain. It became a popular picnic spot. George B. Muse later owned the property.

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Old and New Sugar Valley Consolidated School.

Notable people

Elias Boudinot (1802–1839), born Gallegina Uwati, also known as Buck Watie, Cherokee leader who believed that acculturation was critical to the tribe's survival; influential in the period of removal to the West.

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Ken Carson (2000-), American rapper.

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Charlie Culberson Major League Baseball player.

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Kris Durham, Georgia Bulldog and professional football player; wide receiver for the Oakland Raiders.

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Paul Gillespie Major League Baseball Chicago Cubs catcher was born Sugar Valley.

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Tom Graves, U.S. congressman.

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Roland Hayes (1887–1977), world-renowned lyric tenor, considered the first African-American male concert artist to receive wide acclaim both at home and internationally, born here and attended Calhoun schools.

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Bert Lance (1931–2013), businessman, and former director of the Office of Management and Budget during the Carter administration.

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James Beverly Langford (1922-1996), lawyer, businessman, and Georgia state legislator.

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Gertrude McCoy The silent film star, was born in Sugar Valley.

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Robert D. McTeer, economist

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John Meadows III (1944–2018), Businessman, Mayor of Calhoun, and Georgia state legislator.

Larkin Poe, music duo.

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Sequoyah (English: George Gist or George Guess) (c.1767–1843), Cherokee, inventor of the Cherokee Syllabary. This was the only time in recorded history that a member of a non-literate people independently created an effective writing system. He was also the namesake of California's giant Sequoia sempervirens redwood tree.

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Josh Smoker Major League Baseball player, grew up Sugar Valley.

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William Thompson (1848–1918), Olympic gold medal winner 1918 Team Archery USA.

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Stand Watie (1806–1871), Cherokee leader and Confederate general.

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Dale Willis (1938–), Major League Baseball player.
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OK that post took 3 weeks. First I went to the Rock Garden for all my images back in March. Then I had to redo Georgia Natural Wonder #202  to include Gordon County Part 1. Now I dug up 217 images for Gordon County Part 2. Gordon County right before the North Georgia Mountains.

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Our GNW Gal theme today is Gals in the Rock Garden.

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