Category Archives: –PUTNAM COUNTY GA–

Tompkins Inn, Circa 1812, Putnam County

tompkins inn putnam county ga photograph copyright brian brown vanishing north georgia usa 2016

George Bird purchased this land for $300 in 1810. In 1812, it was purchased by Giles Tompkins (1766-1841), an original settler of Putnam County, for $2000. Due to the increase in value of the land, it’s believed that Bird may have actually built the Inn, but since its history is irrevocably linked to the Tompkins family, it is known as the Tompkins Inn. After Giles died, his widow, Sarah, operated the Inn until the 1850s, when it passed to a granddaughter, also named Sarah. The inn passed to Sarah’s husband, Josias Boswell in 1856. Debt forced the sale of the Inn to A. R. Zachary in 1862. In 1874, Boswell’s second wife, Emmeline, purchased the Inn. Upon Emmeline Boswell’s death in 1910, it was willed to Mary Anderson. The Federal Land Bank of Columbia (South Carolina) assumed ownership in 1927 and it was purchased, along with many large tracts of land, in 1936. It was then rented as private residence until 1970. In that year, Mrs. T. H. Resseau traded a parcel of land for the Inn and 3 acres and deeded it to the Town & Country Garden Club in Eaton.

historic tompkins inn putnam county ga photogaph copyright brian brown vanishing north georgia usa 2016

It is presently being stabilized. It’s located near Eatonton on US 441.

putnam county ga tompkins inn photograph copyright brian brown vanishing north georgia usa 2016

 

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Willard, Georgia

willard ga photograph copyright brian brown vanishing north georgia usa 2016

Slightly west of Eatonton is the crossroads settlement known as Willard. The only thing I found here was this abandoned country store.

willard ga abandoned store photograph copyright brian brown vanishing north georgia usa 2016

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Unknown Vernacular Structure, Putnam County

Putnam County GA Unknown Vernacular Building Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

This structure on Phoenix Road appears to have been a church or schoolhouse, judging by the architecture.

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Turnwold, Early 1800s , Putnam County

Turnwold Plantation Putnam County GA Joel Chandler Harris Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

Located on private property and inaccessible, Turnwold is among the most historic plantations in Georgia. Likely dating to the 1810s-1820s, the present house, known as the Alexander-Turner House, has undergone many modifications over the years. [There is some question as to the actual date of the house today]. In 1805, brothers William and Joseph Turner received property here in the 1805 land lottery and immediately began improving the property. Little is known of William, but Joseph was well-known for publishing The Countryman. It is thought to be the only such periodical published on a plantation during the course of the war. It was as a printer’s devil for Mr. Turner during the Civil War that Joel Chandler Harris heard stories in Turnwold’s slave quarters that would become the basis for his Uncle Remus stories.

Turnwold Plantation Putnam County GA Joel Chandler Harris Antebellum Landmark Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

An outbuilding at the entrance gate is quite interesting in its own right, likely an early tenant house.

Turnwold Plantation Putnam County GA Historic Tenant Cabin Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

Just to emphasize again, this is private property and can only be viewed or photographed from the right of way.

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Ward’s Chapel A. M. E. Church, 1940s, Putnam County

Historic Wards Chapel AME Church Alice Walkers Childhood Congregation Putnam County GA Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

This historic African-American congregation dates to the early 1800s and was the childhood church home of one of Georgia’s most popular authors, Alice Walker. After years of disrepair, it’s being restored.

Wards Chapel AME Church Cemetery Alice Walker Family Plot Putnam County GA Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

The small cemetery across the road is where Ms. Walker’s family are buried.

Alice Walker’s mother and father:

Wards Chapel AME Cemetery Willie Lee Walker Headstone Alice Walker's Father Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

Willie Lee Walker – 13 September 1909-26 January 1973

Wards Chapel AME Cemetery Minnie Tallulah Grant Walker Headstone Alice Walker's Mother Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

Minnie Tallulah Grant Walker – 2 December 1912-10 September 1993

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Panola Hall, 1854, Eatonton

Historic Panola Hall Eatonton GA Photograph Copyight Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

Built by Henry and Elizabeth Perry Tripp, Panola Hall is one of the most iconic houses in Eatonton and among Georgia’s most impressive Greek Revival landmarks. In 1891 the house was purchased by Dr. Benjamin Hunt. Dr. Hunt, a native New Yorker, moved to Putnam County after his marriage to Louisa Prudden of Eatonton. The Hunts made some Victorian changes in the structure as well as conducted general restoration of the house. In 1922 Mr. Hunt was awarded an honorary degree from the University of Georgia, Doctor of Science, for his experiments in dairy farming and botany. Many of his rare plants are still thriving on the grounds. In 1946 the house was owned by M.L. Liles. The house remained in the Liles family until 1981 when it was purchased by Dr. Robert Lott. Dr. Philip Hammond bought the house in 1996. A local legend maintains the house hosts a ghost named Sylvia, who usually appears as a shy silent woman with dark hair and a white skirt. She’s been reported in the second floor hallway, a bedroom, and occasionally peering out the living room window.

Eatonton Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

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Julius Gerdings House, 1850, Eatonton

Historic Eatonton GA Gerdings Young House Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

Also referred to as the Gerdings-Young House, this iconic Greek Revival cottage and the adjacent Bledsoe-Greene House are good examples of residential structures built facing town squares.

Eatonton Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

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