In the 1880s and 1890s, Hillman was a boomtown, not because of agriculture or timber, but because of an unusual attraction known as the Electric Health Resort. Jackie Sturdivant Watson recently shared this history of Hillman: I heard stories of the “Rocks That Shock” from my Grandfather, Bill Dozier, who lived in Hillman from his birth in 1909 until the death of his father in 1922. His brother Wyman (who lived in the house pictured above) remained in Hillman and operated the family’s mercantile store until his death in 1966. As the story goes (very briefly), Reverend A. L. Hillman was searching for gold and alum and sank a shaft on his property. Spending time in the ankle deep water in the shaft reportedly caused cures to a variety of illnesses. As a result, a hotel was built on the property and people came from all around to spend time at the Electric Mound Hotel or “The Hillman”. Henry W Grady, editor of the Atlanta Constitution, was responsible for the financing and building of the hotel, according to an article in the Advocate-Democrat written by GrandDaddy (Bill Dozier, Nov. 1, 1991). GrandDaddy’s parents, Charles Wilder Dozier and Kate Jackson Dozier were operating the Hillman Hotel when it burned in 1901.
I haven’t located anything about the early history of this house, but Jackie Sturdivant Watson writes: My great uncle Wyman Dozier and his wife Annie Sue lived in this house in Hillman in the 1950s and 1960s…The site of the old hotel built in the 1880s is across the road and on the other side of the railroad tracks. Kathy Wright Groseclose notes that the house was occupied as late as the 1980s and was in good condition at that time.