Become Part of the “Fort Buffington Discovery Team”

Help us “Connect the Dots” in Cherokee County before the Highway Destroys them Forever!

Things that may seem insignificant to you could lead to a major break-through in Cherokee County history.

Much of the early history of Cherokee County, Georgia happened along Cumming Highway (SR 20). Early on it was called “Alabama Road” and many small communities were located along the road. One notable community was the Buffington community, about five miles east of Canton. This community developed around a Cherokee Removal fort named Fort Buffington.

Fort Buffington was one of the earliest forts built related to the “Removal” or “Trail of Tears”, as it was later called.  Its location has been lost for over 100 years but we believe it has been located.  A conclusive archaeological excavation could take years and we do not have time on our side… the Highway 20 Improvement Program will destroy the site before excavation could be completed.

There is a chance that other evidence is out there to confirm the site and you may have it in an old album or shoe-box!

It’s Simple!

Please review the two lists below.

The first list is a list of family names that go back as far as the 1820’s or 1830’s.

The other list is a list of places or things that may be mentioned in family papers, or early newspapers, or captured in old photographs that you or a family member may have tucked away.  These may have been passed down through the years even if your present family name is different than those listed. Your relative in Oregon, New York, or Minnesota might have something. It could even be something you purchased at a Yard Sale!

If you feel that you have anything related to these names or places, please contact us. Things that may seem insignificant to you could lead to a major break-through in connecting the dots and lines of Cherokee County history.

If you can connect a name from Column 1 with a reference to something from Column 2, you may have found a very special connection!

We look forward to hearing from you.

Email:  dautzenlein@aol.com

Go to:  dautzenlein.com

 


Family References

Buffington

Garrison

Thomas,   especially Jefferson Thomas

Moore

Tate

Wilson

Willson

Wilson and Cate

Wilbanks/Willbank

Perkins

Evans

Mullins

Posey

Maddox

Henson

Bagwell

Thrasher

Wood

Brewster

Reinhardt

McConnell

Donaldson

Cherokee

Places / Structures / Letters / Diaries/ Stories / Photographic References

“Old Fort”

“Indian Fort”

Fort Buffington

Buffington

Store

“Old Store”

Blacksmith

Post Office

Log cabin

Log house

Cemetery

Graveyard

Graves

Gin

Cotton Gin

Old Barn

Old Smokehouse

Old Shed

Harmony Church

“Old (Family) House”

Spring / Well

“Old Tree”

“Old Oak Tree”

Horse and Wagon

Horse and Building

Cherokee County, Georgia

“Cumming Highway”

“Orange Highway”

“Stockade”

Contacts us at: dautzenlein@aol.com  or leave a comment below. Include how we may contact you. Thank you!

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Historic Landmark Lost!

Sadly, Cherokee County, Georgia has lost one of its earliest historical landmark structures.

The Major John McConnell, Jr. house, built before the Cherokee Removal, has been torn down.

It overlooked McConnell land holdings, in the Hickory Flat area, that stretched from near New Light and Hickory Roads on into town where its earlier counterpart, the McConnell/Garrison/ Worley/Quarles house stood near the intersection of East Cherokee and Highway 140. John had followed his son, Eli, to the area.

When Brigadier General Eli McConnell and his brother-in-law, John B. Garrison moved into the Cherokee Nation in 1829-30 and co-founded Hickory Flat, they were the first settlers in the area. In fact, they were among the first settlers in the Cherokee Nation. McConnell and Garrison established homes, families, Post Office, and trade here at the crossroads of several early trails.

Eli’s two story house, first depicted on drawings from the 1832 land survey, had been Hickory Flat’s main historical building until it was lost to development some years ago. Now, John’s house, very similar architecturally, has been torn down. Neither house sparked enough attention to have them preserved.

It is interesting that “old” buildings, still within the childhood memories of folks, seem to have more importance than buildings that pre-date one’s memory.

All this is nothing new in the grand scheme of things, it’s just sad to see. Things do fade into history.

IMGP3784compGoing… going…

IMGP4725 crop

Gone… Forever.  1834 – 2015

 The Dautzenlein Theory states, “ Dautzenleins* persist or decay based on the original intention of someone and the continued attention or inattention of others.” Those Dautzenleins perceived as more valuable will tend to become bigger and more solid; those perceived as less valuable or undesirable will fade and “disappear.”

 John McConnell’s original intention to have a house must have been very strong… it   lasted 181 years!

*Dautzenleins are the connections of people or things, places, dates, and events.

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Trail of Tears Routes from Fort Buffington and Sixes to Fort Wool

The question recently came up:  What routes did The Cherokee take from Fort Buffington and Sixes Encampment as they started on the Trail of Tears?  We put together several references and now have a good view of how they traveled according to the National Park Service and another possibility.

Trail of Tears Routes from Fort Buffington and Sixes Encampment

The NPS suggests that the Fort Buffington Cherokee traveled west on old Alabama Road to Donaldson’s Ferry on the Etowah, north of Cherokee Court House / Etowah / Canton @ Land Lot 167/14/2.

Once across the Etowah, they would have traveled west on a road (that was layed out in 1834/35) and followed an early trail called Warford’s Trail (Wofford’s Trail) that went to Wofford’s Cross Roads.

The Trail would have turned southwest to join up with the road that ran from Downings Ferry to Cassville.

Two trails, sometimes called Upper and Lower Sweetwater, join at Laffingal and then head west, then northwest to Cassville. In 1838, Lower Sweetwater was part of the old Alabama Road, sometimes called Downing’s Ferry Road, as it continued west of Canton, across the Etowah at Downing’s Ferry and on to Laffingal and points west.

From Cassville the Trail ran for awhile on the road “from Cassville to Coosawattee” and then branched, just north of the South Fork of Two Run Creek, northwest to Adairsville and on to Calhoun and Fort Wool near New Town / New Echota .

The Sixes Cherokee crossed the Etowah at Brookes Ferry on Land Lot 216/15/2. This was north of Sixes mines, now the Bridgemill area. This route would have given the Cherokee one last look at the Sixes Village with the large Town House at its center as the trail climbed out of the river lands and up to old Alabama Road / Downing’s Ferry Rd on the same route to Cassville.

Dautzenlein Connections also point to an alternative possibility that Fort Buffington Cherokees and Sixes Cherokees took different routes to Fort Wool.

The Sixes Cherokees probably took the route above, starting at Brooke’s Ferry and following Downing’s Ferry / Alabama Road west to Ft. Wool.

The Buffington Cherokee may have taken a different, more northerly route from Donaldson’s Ferry, at Canton, northwest thorough what is now Waleska, on to Pine Log, and up to Ft. Wool. We’ve coined this the “140 Route” as it generally follows Georgia Route 140 from Martin’s Ferry, a gateway into the Cherokee Nation on the Chattahoochee River, up to Canton and all the way to Adairsville near Calhoun. Court documents from 1836 mention this “road from Canton to New Town” and its proximity to L. W. Reinhardt’s.

More research is needed to definitively map the routes but these are the two possibilities that are the most probable.

Note: See later post with Update about this!

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