It’s the 4th of July, American Independence Day.
I have spent several happy evenings over the last week when I could have been gaming or painting, instead looking through the thousands of photographs on the Forgotten Georgia blog / website that I mentioned last week. http://forgottengeorgia2.blogspot.co.uk
I have now reached only E on the A to Z list of 159 Counties in the State of Georgia all represented on the Forgotten Georgia website – that’s a lot of Counties. http://news.wabe.org/post/why-ga-has-second-highest-number-counties-us
This website is such a rich visual and historic treat for modellers and military historians.
I showed this website to a work colleague who models American railroads and he was excited and very intrigued at all the construction details revealed as many of these buildings slowly collapse.
There are many American Civil War sites from railroad stations to the last Confederate wooden flagpole in Georgia, Confederate CSA memorials and grave markers.
There are also historic sites and cemetery markers for the War Of 1812, American War of Independence, pioneer times and the numerous Indian Wars, separation from Spanish Florida etc.
There are turpentine tree stumps, preserved or faltering buildings from Black or African American schools to small chapels, covered bridges to rusting tin roofed wooden shacks and barns, Edward Hopper style town houses, mercantile stores, post offices, cotton gins, mills and businesses right up to the Fifties and Sixties. Sometimes all that remains is a chimney stack in a field or a small family cemetery of a few graves.
Lots of interesting stories, some known and well documented, others as forgotten as the ruined buildings themselves. Some photos have captions from the family, some proudly talking about their restored or surviving buildings, others about their family ruin. Some other sites or buildings have informative Georgia Historiacal Society metal plaques. http://georgiahistory.com
One story I noted was Dutchy, an unfortunate and unloved Confederate memorial, demolished by its own townsfolk.
” Dutchy” was the first monument made in Elberton in 1898 as the town’s Confederate Memorial. The town’s people were not happy. They thought he looked too squat and said he looked like a Yankee, “a cross between a Pennsylvania Dutchman and a hippopotamus,” thus the name.
In 1900 a group of young men, tired of others making fun, pulled him down and buried him in a deep grave. He was exhumed in 1982 and is on display at the Granite Museum in Elberton.
Demolished by his own side! The photograph of Dutchy and text are courtesy of Jim Williamson and the Forgotten Georgia website.
Several other websites mention Dutchy, a prize exhibit of the Granite Musum of Elberton GA in Georgia USA, which has a great short video about Dutchy.
There is another short video on the Georgia History Today website, showing a glimpse of the replacement statue.
The replacement more conventional statue is shown here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/posrus/10372281864/
Sadly the Granite Museum shop (online) does not seem to sell miniature Dutchy statues, as who would not want a whole regiment of these strange Confederate (or Union) looking troops?
Many counties in Georgia were witness to Civil War skirmishes and battles including Sherman’s March to the Sea which led to much destruction by both sides. http://www.civilwarheritagetrails.org/ga-civil-war-trails-map/ga-atlanta-campaign.html
The State Of Dade
The Georgia map on the Elberton sign thankfully includes the missing or lost County of Dade GA, isolated up in the far Northwest of Georgia:
In 1860, residents of Dade County voted to secede from the state of Georgia and from the United States, but no government outside the county ever recognized this gesture as legal. [On July 4th] 1945, the county symbolically “rejoined” Georgia and the United States …
Shortly after the Georgia State Quarter was released by the US Mint , Dade County gained attention because of an apparent mistake in the design. As shown on the quarter, the state appears to lack Dade County, in the extreme northwestern part of the state. Some accounts in 2012 suggest the exclusion was intended to refer to the local legend of Dade County’s secession from Georgia [Wikipedia entry for Dade County, Georgia USA]
The Dade County official website has a longer slightly debunking version of the The State Of Dade.
Not to be confused with the Free State of Jones recent Civil War film and book https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_State_of_Jones_(film)
Dade County is also the site of the 1863 Civil War bloody Battle of Chickamauga.
Arguably the finest Confederate statues are the tiny Airfix OO/HO Confederate Infantry. These 1960s and 1970s plastic figures are slowly getting brittle, sadly not all of my original boyhood figures were fit for parade.
And apologies to Canadian readers – happy 150th Canada Day on the 1st of July.
Blog by Mark, Man of TIN blog, Blogposted (but not born) on the 4th of July 2017.