Category Archives: –JONES COUNTY GA–

Sunshine United Methodist Church, 1880, Round Oak

 

Historic Sunshine Methodist Church Round Oak GA Jones County GA Site of Civil War Battle Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

Known at its organization as Round Oak Methodist, and now called Sunshine Methodist or Sunshine II, the church seen here was organized sometime after the burning of a more primitive log structure known as Sunshine Church, which was a Baptist congregation.

That church was the site of the Battle of Sunshine Church (30-31 July 1864), one of the few Confederate victories in the Atlanta campaign. Stoneman’s raiders, attempting to meet up with Sherman’s forces, encountered three brigades commanded by Clinton native General Alfred Iverson. A decisive Confederate victory forced Stoneman’s surrender. Four months later, Sherman’s troops burned the old church as they passed through the area en route to Savannah.

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Round Oak, Georgia

Round Oak GA Jones County Cutout Sign Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

Founded as Sylvania in 1807, Round Oak is one of the oldest settlements in Jones County. The name was changed to honor an ancient oak known as a gathering place for Native Americans. A depot was built in 1885 and brought a thriving economy which persisted until the early 1920s. The Big O Ranch, home of Otis Redding’s widow Zelda, is located on Otis Redding Road just outside town.

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Woodmen of the World Lodge 358, Round Oak

Round Oak GA Jones County Woodmen of the World Lodge 358 Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

This camp dates to 1907 and the building is likely contemporary to that date.  Jones County History & Heritage Newsletter (Fall 2003) notes that dances were held upstairs during the 1920s.

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Abandoned Farmhouse, Round Oak

Round Oak GA Jones County Abandoned Farmhouse Magnolia Bay Window Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

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Unidentified Building, Round Oak

Round Oak GA Jones County Vernacular Building Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

This could have been a small store, precinct house, or seed house. I hope to find out soon.

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Round Oak School, Circa 1923

Round Oak GA School House Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

I believe this is the school built to replace one built in 1912 and deemed unsafe by 1923. According to Jones County Historian Carrie Williams it was built using material from the earlier structure and used until rural schools were consolidated in the county in 1946. I’m unsure if this was the school house or the auditorium.

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Watson Grocery, Wayside

Watson Grocery Wayside GA Jones County Ghost Town Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

The sign on the building originally read “Goodson Grocery”, but was later changed to “Watson Grocery”. I don’t know if this was simply an error, or if two different owners operated it over the years.

Watson Goodman Grocery Wayside GA Jones County Ghost Town Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

Wayside may have seen better days, but a historical marker placed in 1956 notes its early importance: “The Farmer’s Academy (later Planter’s Academy) was incorporated December 19, 1822 by Act of Legislature signed by Governor John Clark. Trustees included Bailey Bell, Adam Carson, Kinchen P. Thweatt, James Lockett, Cyrus Cotton, Samuel Barron and William Cowan. Early teachers were Wilson Whatley, William Whatley, Joe Carson, J. R. Jenkins, J. A. Bowers, James F. Barron. Family names on the school rolls were Barron, Hunt, Brown, Jones, Green, Hascall, Henseley, Whatley and Walker. The academy building was burned by Sherman’s forces in November 1864 and was never rebuilt.”

For a more thorough history, see this summary by Jones County historian Carrie Williams:

http://www.jonescountyga.org/history_wayside.php

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