Millhaven Plantation, Screven County

Millhaven dates to 1769. According to an historical marker placed in 1953: The earliest trade center and industrial development in interior Georgia was established here before the Revolutionary War by Francis Paris, Senior. A rick dam was constructed across the creek, of which it is said that the 400 horse power developed for the feed and saw mills was by far the greatest in the colony. The rock foundations of the old dam are still embedded in the creek about 300 yards above the present bridge. Paris sold the land, mills, and appurtenances to Seaborn Jones, of Augusta, on February 8th, 1796.

It’s grown over the past two centuries into a mixed-purpose property that still includes active farming operations, timber holdings and hunting reservations.

This is part of the modern farming operation. I’m not sure what the round building was/is used for.

Today, it’s owned by William S. Morris III of the Morris Communications Company, who has received awards for its conservation and management.

That’s no small accomplishment considering it’s the largest farm operating as a single unit east of the Mississippi.

A few old houses remain around the property.

They were likely employee-related structures from the early to mid-20th century.

They are very diverse in their architectural styles.


25 thoughts on “Millhaven Plantation, Screven County

  1. Jeffrey W Truitt

    Does anyone know of the Truitt family that at one point lived in Millhaven. They left there and moved up to Newark, N.J. during the Great Migration. John L. Truitt was my grandfather.

  2. Joan Collier Philip

    My great aunt Georgie Collier married into the Comer family in the early 20th century. She and Mr. Comer owned Millhaven for a period of time, ending in the late 1940’s, I believe, after the death of Mr. Comer. My late father remembered summer visits to the plantation as a child, circa 1930’s, and swimming in a pond with the children of the employees.

  3. Tommi Sheppard

    I am currently researching my Phinesee\Albright\Preston and Scott family histories. All roads are leading back to Millhaven. I am interested to know if there are any records that could help facilitate my search and how I may obtain a copy.

    1. Ronnie Massey

      I grew up with some Albright friends on Wade Plantation in the 80’s. I know there are quite a few Albrights in the area.

  4. Dan Frawley

    … no one ever mentions the large unkept cemetery there?? I’d be interested in knowing more about it ….


      I am hoping to visit the cemetery. It may be the resting place of my ancestor Lucy Claflin. Is it accessible?


    My mother’s family was from Millhaven, GA. My grandmother was the youngest of 12 born circa 1900. The family name is Cooper with relatives to Butler. My mother is now 93 years old and I would like for my mother to visit for the last time. My first and only visit to Millhaven was in 1980 when we return to bury my “adopted” grandmother, my real grandmother’s sister at the family’s plot. My adopted grandmother or great aunt raised my mother after the death of her sister in 1930. If this history sounds familiar, and if you know the Cooper and/or Butler family and know the location of their family church, please provide this information. Thank you for reading.

    1. Virginia

      My ancestors also were Coopers. Church would be @adw Baptist in Cooperville, just up or down the road from Millhaven. It’s a tiny Hamlet, once a going concern but not to be proud of in all ways.
      The Wade cemetery is also close by.
      Church seems closed very regrettably.
      These small churches are holders if history.
      Some historical records in Sylvania.
      We’re probably long list cousins of some inth degree. I bet.

  6. Lori

    I have ancestors that worked on Millhaven. This plantation has a school, church, saw mill, grist mill and many other things that make it a fascinating place to discover. My history of the plantation is in the Armstrong Campus/Lane Library if any of you would like to review it. It was a senior project at Armstrong Atlantic State University and then I used the information contributing to a master’s thesis. I’m happy to share what I know if you have questions.

    1. Virginia

      I always wonder about descendants of enslaved people at Millhaven plantation and Samuel shepherd lines house.
      I wonder if the community of Dover is where people set up their homes.
      Cannot find these things out
      Very interested in your research, Lori. Also in whether you came across info about the Samuel Shepherd Lines plantation which was decades after war incorporated into Millhaven Plantation.

    2. Tommi Sheppard

      Hi Lori,

      Does the plantation have a slaves registry? I am the descendant of slaves that worked on that plantation. I am creating my family tree and would like to be as accurate has historical records will allow.

      Also, I noticed the plantation stretched across the Savannah River into what is currently known as Barnwell, SC. I was not sure about that fact.

    3. Terry Franzen

      I am trying to find your Master’s Thesis at Armstrong , now part of GA Southern. Please tell me the title of your thesis, your name when it was published, and the date of publication. Thank you so much!

  7. Terry Franzen

    My dad, Lloyd Glisson, was born on Milhaven Plantation in 1921. He was the 2d of 4 sons of Harry and Alma Glisson. My grandfather ran the plantation store. I vaguely remember going to the house where they lived once. It looked very much like the first picture of the run down house with the red siding. My father told me about working in the cotton fields. My dad was very big, 6 ft 4in, and went to Sylvania for high school where he could play football. He stayed with a family in town. He got a scholarship to GA Southern and played on the last football team before WWII. He was drafted out of school. After the war, he moved to Augusta. I am very interested in learning more about Milhaven.

    1. Virginia

      I always wonder about descendants of enslaved people at Millhaven plantation and Samuel shepherd lines house.
      I wonder if the community of Dover is where people set up their homes.
      Cannot find these things out

  8. Marilyn Keola Maynor Gould

    My dad was hit by a car and died when I was seven years old. I have been able to trace his family of origin back to Millhaven in Screven, Georgia. Based on ancestry, I can see that my great, great, great grand parents James (Jack) and Henrietta Manor were negroes, born here and raised their families beginning in the 1840s. I never knew any of my dad’s 7 siblings and from what I can tell they are all deceased with the exception of his sister Millie who is now 90 years old. It would give me great joy to meet her and learn more about the Manor family history. I am planning to visit this area this spring or summer with my children.

    1. Virginia

      Excellent idea. Not much there to see. I keep wondering about where the formerly enslaved set up house- those who stayed in the area. Surely they must have formed a community.
      When I was a tiny child staying in Cooperville with my grandmother (white) there was a Af. Am. man who ploughed fields, but I never saw his community or family, and I’ve always wondered.

  9. Tonia Cooper

    Good afternoon.
    I’m researching my family history and I think Greatgrand Parents might have lived on this plantation. Minis Davis and Ida Tilly Davis.

  10. Dale E. Reddick

    Hi Brian,

    In the Colonial Records of Georgia the progress of the building of the first version of Millhaven, then being called “Milltown” by its founder Francis Paris, was already being discussed in 1768. So, I think 1769 was the completion year for the mill and bridge at old Pine Log Landing on Brier Creek.

  11. David Clifton Damian

    My mother was born here in 1938, the youngest of 9 children (Clifton’s) and a twin. Millhaven was an incredibly thriving community with its own doctor, school, general store among many other things at that time. The town and surrounding farm (16,000 acres I believe) was owned by the publisher of the Saturday Evening Post, a powerhouse magazine back in the day. I love Screven County, the people, the beauty, and the history. The rich, rich history.

  12. Dianna

    Barbecue and Toasts Barbecue
    Hosted by Mrs. Mary Ann (Mills) Bonnell
    04 Jul 1812 Screven County, GA
    A barbecue consisting of an ox and two deer, with suitable trimmings, on the 4th instant by the worthy Mrs. Mary Ann Bonnell, living in Screven County on the Augusta Road, near Millhaven. The invitation was general to everyone within a mile of her dwelling, professing Republican Principles. The number of guest amounted to 130 (54 of which were Mrs. Bonnell’s children and grandchildren). An exhibition of the pupils under Mr. W.C. Wylly’s tuition took place previous to the barbecue, which did honor to themselves and teacher, and grave great satisfaction to the parents and spectators. After the exhibition and partaking of the barbecue the following toasts were drank and at each toast, a platoon fired and three cheers were given
    By Mrs. Mary Ann Bonnell: “The young men of 1812 – May they prove themselves worth of the heritage left them by their fathers of 1776”.
    By Captain Thomas F. Lovett, Sr. “To our brethren in arms – first to the officers – second to the privates now engaged in our Country’s Cause, in front of St. Augustine”.
    By Captain Bell: “To the Governor of our State, David B. Mitchell, and his band of patriots who distinguished themselves so gallantly at Amelia Island”.
    By Captain Wm C. Wylly: “May the blessed will of the Supreme Being be with and protect our gallant officers and privates now engaged in our County’s Cause – May they all act with that patriotic valor which becomes a republican in the time of action”.
    By Thomas F. Lovett: “To the young officers and soldiers in the American Army – May they fight the battles of their country in the time of war, and when gentle peace returns, enjoy the smiles of the fair of Georgia”.
    By Mrs. Wm Bryan: “To our Naval officers and soldiers, Commander Roger, Commodore Decatur, together with the rest of our Naval Officers: and my patriotic valor reign in the breast for every American until the time is no more”.
    By Mrs. Thomas Mills: “To the President, Vice-President, and to such part of the members as are possessed of republican principles”.
    By John F. Lovett: “To the memory of General Green”.
    By Mrs. Robert Lovett: “Let virtue and valor reign through nations yet unborn of the republicans”.

  13. Kathy Bridges

    My Great Grand Daddy worked here as a young man…my Daddy’s farm adjoins this plantation. My late husband logged the swampy areas in the late 70’s. Millhaven has been there forever it seems…

      1. Marilyn Keola Maynor Gould

        I am named after my grandmother, Mary Keola Scott, who was born in 1905 in Screven GA. She married David Arthur Manor of Screven, GA who was born in 1901. He was a light brown negro, who was a farmer in Millhaven according to census records. They had seven children. I don’t have information regarding “Scott”, my grandmother’s family. I wonder if there is any relation.

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