Tag Archives: Georgia Stone Structures

Pass Brothers General Store & Warehouse, Circa 1930s, Vesta

Vesta was formally established in the late 19th century and had a post office from 1888-1904. According to Kenneth Krakow’s Georgia Place Names: Their History and Origins it was named for Vesta Johnson, the daughter of a local settler. Darryl James McKoon writes: [This was the] Pass Brothers General Store. The store, general merchandise, a butcher shop, and Gulf branded gasoline, was on the right, storage building on the left. It is now used for community BBQ events.There was an old multiple story wood cotton gin to the right of the store where the residence is now. Back in the day it was quite busy. Belt driven equipment by a three cylinder upright diesel engine with a two cylinder backup.Long gone, across the street to the right of the flag pole, was a large wooden structure that was also a Pass Brothers General Store. The owners were the older generation of the owners across the street.

Both structures date to the 1930s-1940s, from what I’ve been able to locate.

Lowry Grist Mill Ruins, Euharlee

Euharlee was originally known as Burge’s  Mill, for the grist mill Nathaniel Burge operated on Euharlee Creek. The earlier mill burned around 1880 and was rebuilt by Daniel Lowry. Sections of the foundation are likely remnants of the original antebellum mill. A plan to rebuild the mill has been proposed, but I’m unsure of its status at this time.

Cave Entrance, 1930s, Cave Spring

This structure, built of local stone by the Works Progress Administration in the 1930s, marks the entrance to the limestone cave which gives the community its name. Two million gallons flow daily from the source, which has been a landmark since long before the establishment of the town in 1832.

In 1931 Dr. J. B. Rolater deeded the cave and 29 adjacent acres to the people of Cave Spring for use as a public park. In the early days local residents were allowed to tour the cave for free, while tourists were charged ten cents.

Rolater Park Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

Yorkville Methodist Church, 1946, Paulding County

Yorkville Methodist Church was established on 28 July 1874. The present structure was built in 1946. It is now home to Liberty Tabernacle.

Old Gaol, 1807, Greensboro

The oldest masonry jail in Georgia, Greensboro’s ‘Old Gaol’ is distinguished by its English spelling, which seems fitting considering the structure’s appearance. Locally quarried granite was used in construction, which was patterned after European citadels known for their harsh conditions. The downstairs cells were dark and catacomb-like, reserved for particularly unsavory characters. Such prisoners were chained to the walls with absolutely no creature comforts, including heat or ventilation. Non-violent criminals were placed upstairs, where conditions weren’t much better, but at least allowed for outside light. A trap-door gallows is also present. The jail served Greene County until 1895, when a more modern jail was constructed.

Greensboro Commercial Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

Chenocetah Mountain Fire Tower, 1937, Cornelia

This fire tower was built atop Chenocetah Mountain (1830′) by the WPA Resettlement Administration for use by rangers in the Chattahoochee National Forest. The 54′ granite tower was dedicated on 7 June 1938. Later, a plaque was added to the tower in memory of three forest workers who died in World War II: William A. Crossland, Robert C. Fuller, and Edward W. Simpson. Use of the tower was discontinued in 1975 and its fate was unsure, but the Georgia Forest Service began restaffing it during fire season in 1989.

National Register of Historic Places

Central of Georgia Railway Depot, 1890, Chickamauga

After having fallen into disrepair for many years, including the loss of its tower, this depot was recently restored and is now home to the Walker County Regional Heritage and Train Museum.

Chickamauga Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

Stone-Sided Law Office, Clayton

clayton-ga-rock-house-photograph-copyright-brian-brown-vanishing-north-georgia-usa-2016

This is an attorney’s office. I don’t know if it was built recently for this purpose or if it was originally a house. Stone structures like this are emblematic of the mountains to me.

Ruins of Jenkins General Store, 1906, Harris City

harris city ga ruins of jenkins general store photogrpah copyright brian brown vanishing north georgia usa 2016

George W. Jenkins, Sr., built Jenkins General Store with hand-cut rock to replace its wood frame predecessor. Jenkins was a successful merchant, drawing shoppers from all over the area to Harris City. The business thrived until the early 1920s, when the boll weevil signaled a collapse of the cotton-based agricultural economy. George, Sr, moved to Atlanta and established a small grocery store, less susceptible to the ups-and-downs of the agricultural economy. In the meantime, his son, George, Jr., graduated from Greenville High School and moved to Florida in 1925 to seek his fortune in real estate. He took a job with Piggly Wiggly, however, and after just a couple of months as a clerk he was promoted to manager.  In 1930 he left Piggly Wiggly and opened the first Publix store in Winter Haven. Today, Publix is one of the largest grocery store chains in the nation. I like to think that lessons Mr. Jenkins learned here in Harris City, at his father’s side, helped make him into the successful entrepreneur that he became.