A county in the W. N. W. part of Georgia, bordering on Alabama, with an area of 540 square miles. It is traversed by the Coosa river and its constituent streams, the Etowah and Oostenaula rivers, which unite at the county seat; also drained by Cedar and other creeks. The surface is beautifully diversified, and in some parts mountainous. Taylor's ridge is the principal elevation. The soil of the valleys and the river bottoms is represented to be very productive. Cotton, Indian corn, wheat, oats, and sweet potatoes are the staples. In 1850 this county produced 1976 bales of cotton; 254,722 bushels of corn; 15,370 of oats, and 36,818 of sweet potatoes. There were 2 manufactories of coaches, 2 of cabinet-ware, and 8 tanneries. It contained 2 newspaper offices; 409 pupils attending academies and other schools. Iron, plumbago, galena, slate, satin spar, and agate are found. There is a valuable mineral spring in the S. W. part. A branch railroad extends from the county seat to the Western and Atlantic railroad. Organized about the year 1833, previous to which time the soil was in the possession of the Cherokee Indians. Named in honor of General Floyd, former member of Congress from Georgia. Capital, Rome. Population, 8205, of whom 5206 were free, and 2999 slaves.
Baldwin, Thomas and J. Thomas, M.D.
New and Complete Gazetteer of the United States. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott, Grambo, & Co., 1854 --- Page 388
About General Floyd:
General John Floyd was given command of Georgia's troops in the War of 1812 against Great Britain. Floyd established Fort Mitchell, just across the Chattahoochee River in present-day Alabama.
Below is the wording from "The Historical Collections of Georgia
Transcribed by Brenda Pierce.
This county was laid out from Cherokee in 1832.
The principal streams are from the Oostenaula and Etowah, which unite their waters at Rome, forming the Coosa.
Rome is the county town, at the junction of the Etowah and Oostenaula rivers, situated upon several high hills, and commands a fine view of the mountains. Distant from Milledgeville 176 miles.
Rome, in the opinion of Colonel A. J. Pickett, whose researches
into the early history of Georgia and Alabama are highly interesting, occupies
the site of an Indian town formerly called Chiaha. DeSoto took up his
quarters in this town in 1540, according to the following statement, which is
extracted from an account of DeSoto's travels, written by a Portugall gentlemen
of Eluas emploied in all the action, and translated out of Portugese by Richard
The Gouernor departed from Guaxule, and in two daies iournie came to a towne called Canasagua. There met him on the way twenty Indians, euery one laden with a basket of mulberries; for there be many, and those very good, from Cutifa-chiqui thither and so forward in other Prouinces, and also nuts and plummes. And the trees grow in the fields without planing or dressing them, and as big as rancke as though they grew in gardens digged and watered.
From the time that Gouernour departed from Canasagua, hee iournied fiue daies through a desert; and two leagues before he came to Chiaha, there met him 15 Indians loaden with maiz, which the Cacique had sent; and they told him on his behalfe that he waited his comming with twenty barnes full of it; and further that himselfe, his Countrie and subjects, and al things els, were at his service. On the 5 day of June the Gouernour entred into Chiaha: The Cacique voiled his owne houses in which he lodged, and receiued him with much joy, saying these words following: -- "mightie and excellent Lord, I hold myself for so happie a man in that it hath pleased your lordship to use me, that nothing that happened unto me of more contentment, nor that I could have esteemed so much. From Guarule your Lordship sent unto me that I should prepare maiz for you in this towne for two months. Here I have for you 20 barnes full of the choicest that in all the Countrie could be found. If your Lordship be not entertained by me in such sort as is fit for so hie a Prince, respect my tender age, which excuseth me from blame, and receive my good wil, which with much loyaltie, truth and sinceritie, I will always shew in anything which shall concerne your Lordship's service."
The Governor answered him that he thanked him very much for his seruice and offer, and that he would alaies account him as his brother.
There was in this towne much butter in gourds, melted like oile; they said it was the fat of beares. There was found also great store of oile of walnuts, which was cleare as butter, and of a good taste, and a pot ful of honie of ees, which neither before nor afterward was seene in all the Countrie.
The Towne was an Island betweene two armes of a Riuer, and was seated nigh one of them. The Riuer diudeth itselfe into those two brances, two crosse-bow shot aboute the towne, and meeteth again a league beneath the same. The plain betweene both the branches is sometimes one crosse-bow shot, sometimes be waded ourer. There were along them verie good meadows, and manie fields sowne with maiz; and because the Indians staied in their Towne, the Gouernour only lodged in the houses of the Cacique, and his people in the fields; where there was eurer a tree eurie one tooke one for himselfe. Thus the camp lay separated one from another, and out of order. The Gouernour winked at it, because the Indians were in peace; and because it was very hot, and the people should have suffered great extremeties if it had not bin so. The horses came thither so weak, that for the feebleness they were not able to carrie their masters; because that from Cutifa-chiqui they alwaies traulled with verie little prouender. and were hunger starued and tired eurer since they came from the desert of Ocute; and because the most of them wee not in case to vse in battell, thoughneed should require they sent them to feed in the night a quarter of a league from the Camp. The Christians were there in great danger, because that if, at this time, the Indians had set upon them, they had been in euill case to haue defended themselves. The Gouernour rested there thirtie daies, in which time, because the Countrie was very fruitfull, the horses grew fat. At the time of his departure, by the importunitie of some, which would haue more than was reason, hee demanded of the Cacique 30 women to make slaves of. Hee answered that he would conferre with his chiefe men. And before hee returned an answere, one night all of them, with their wives and children, forsooke the owne and fled away. The next day, the Gouernour purposing to goe to seeke them, the Cacique came unto him, and as his comming vsed these works unto the Gouernour; "Mightie Lord, with shame and fear of your Lordship, because my subjects, against my will, haue done amisse in absenting themselues, I went my way without your license; and knowing the errour which I have committed, like a loyall subject I come to yeeld myselfe into your power, to dispose of mee at your owne pleasure. For my subjects do not obey mee, nor doe anything but whan an Vncle of mine commandeth, which gouerneth this Countrie from me, vntill I be of a perfect age. If your Lordship will pursue them and execute on them that which for their disobedience they deserue, I will be your guide, since at this present my fortune will not suffer me to performe any more."
Presently the Gouernour with 30 horsemen and as many footemen went to seeke the Indians; and passing by some townes of the principall Indians which had absented themselves, hee cut and destroyed great fields of maiz; and went vp the River, where the Indians were in an Island, where the horesemen could not come at them. There he sent them word by an Indian to return to their towne and teare nothing, and that they should giue him men to carrie burdens, as al those behind had done; for he would haue no Indian women, seeing they were so loth to part with them.
The Indians accepted his request and came to the
Gouernour to excuse themselves; and so all of them returned to their towne.
A Cacique of a Prouince called Coste came to this towne to visit the Gouernour.
After hee had offered himselfe, and passsed with some words, of tendring his
seruice and curtesie, the Gouernour asking him whether he had notice of any rich
Countrie, he said yea; to sit, that toward the North there was a Prouince named
Chisca; and there was a melting of copper and of another metall of the same
colour, saue that it was finer and of a farre more perfect coulour, and farre
better to the sight, and that they vsed it not so much because it was softer.
And the selfe-same thing was told the Gouernour in Cutifa-chiqui; where we saw some little hatchets of copper which were said to haue a mixture of gold. But in that part the countrie was not well peopled, and they said there were mountains which horses could not passe; and for that cause, the Gouernour would not goe from Cutifa-chiqui directly hither. And hee made account that trauelling through a peopled countrie, when his men and horses should bee in better plight, and hee were better certified of the truth of the thing, he would returned toward it by mountaines and a better inhabited countrie, whereby hee might haue a better passage. He sent two Christians from Chiaha, with certaine Indians which knew the countries of Chisca, and the language thereof, to view it, and to make report.
DeSoto then broke up his camp, recrossed the Oostenaula, and marched down the west side of the Coosa, leaving the generous people of Chiaha well satisfied with presents.
Rome has a number of handsome private dwellings.
The Etowah House is eligibly situated near the railroad and steamboat landing, and is conducted by an obliging gentleman.
At the last session of the Legislature, a town opposite to Rome was incorporated by the name of De Soto.
Hillsborough is opposite to Rome.
The Town of Cave Springs is in the southern portion of the county, near the Alabama line.
Deaf & Dumb Asylum. Photograph follows:
The Georgia Asylum for the Deaf and Dumb, of which the above is a view, is located here.
The Legislature of the State, at a different times, have made liberal appropriations for the support and education of the deaf and dumb. Formerly, a commissioner was appointed to receive applications in behalf of indigent deaf and dumb inhabitants of this State, and to make all necessary arrangements for conveying such beneficiaries to the American Asylum at Hartford, Connecticut; but that office is now abolished. In 1847, the Legislature passed an act authorizing the Governor to appoint five commissioners, who were required to make all necessary arrangements for the erection of any asylum.
Extract from the Census of 1850--Dwellings, 866; families, 806; white males, 2781, white females 2421; free coloured males 2; free coloured females 2. Total free population, 5,206; slaves, 2,999. Deaths 49. Farms, 397, manufacturing establishments, 15. Value of real estate, $1,581,400; value of personal estate, 1,673,691.
In the fork of the Etowah and Oostenaula rivers, near Rome, human bones have been found. In September, 1793, an engagement took place here between the whites and Indians, the particulars of which are thus given by Breazeale:--
Battle with the Indians -- In September, 1793, the Cherokee Indians, amounting, it is believed, to about one thousand, made an incursion into the settlements of Tennessee, and attacked and took Cavit's Station, eight miles below Knoxville, murdering the whole family, thirteen in number. After the massacre of the inmates of the fort, they made a precipate retreat, turning across the country towards the Clinch River, which they crossed in a few hours afterwards. It was supposed at the time that the Indians intended to attack the town of Knoxville, and were only prevented by daylight breaking upon them sooner than they expected. General Sevier was then at John Ish's, on the south side of Holston, having arrived a few days before with four hundred men. He immediately raised additional troops, and marched into the Cherokee country, hoping to overtake the party who had murdered Cavit's family. His force consisted of about seven or eight hundred men. They crossed Tennessee at the Coyetee ford, Hiwassee, at the mouth of Ocoee, and marched directly to a town called Oostenaula. At this place he remained three days, on account of sickness among his troops.
The first night after Sevier's soldiers crossed Coosawattee, the Indians fired upon them, and wounded one man. The second night, Sevier caused a breatwork of logs and brush to be erected. On the next morning, John Lowry (now Colonel John Lowry) and others went to the river to water their horeses, and were fired on by the Indians, and Lowry received a shot in the arm. On the third day after the army crossed the Coosawattee, General Sevier ordered Colonel Kelly to march with his army up the river o the Coosawattee village, and destroy it, which he accordingly did, and returned to Sevier's encampment the same evening. On the next morning, General Sevier marched the army down the river. When he came within half a mile of the junction of the Oostenaula and Etowah, the paths forked, one leading to the Hightower towns, and the other to the Oostenaula, and leading down it, on the northern or eastern side, and here he divided his army, and placed on detachment under the command of Colonel Kelly, and took command of the other himself. He ordered Colonel Kelly to cross the Etowah, and proceed down on the southern side and destroy all the Indian towns as he marched; while he (General Sevier) would march down on the other side of the river and lay waste the country there. Carey and Findleston had been employed as pilots, well acquainted with the country. Upon arriving at the ford of the Etowah, it was discovered that the Indians had fortified themselves on the ford on the opposite side.
They had dug holes in the river and bank in which to secrete themselves, and had cut saplings and fell them down the bank where the path went out of the river. Upon making this discovery, Colonel Kelly concerted a plan with Major Evans to draw the Indians out of the strongholds, and compel them to fight on the open ground and he succeeded most admirably. He marched the army down the river, a few hundred yards below the ford, to a canoe-landing, where the watr n, and swam across. Major Evans instantly ordered the detachment to halt, and, seeing the Indians running down on the other side of the river to meet Kelly and his comrades, he faced the men about, all being horsemen, and dashed up to the ford in full gallop, and crossed the river at half speed. The Indians, seeing the main party crossing at the ford, ran back, leaving Colonel Kelly and his friends to escape from the water in safety. A hot and furious battle ensued which lasted about twenty minutes.
When the front of the detachment had crossed the
river and reached the bank, they were obliged to alight, and cut the saplings
and brush with their hatchets, this was doing, the Indians fired upon them, and
killed one man; but the little army succeeded in ascending very quickly and
returned the fire of the Indians with so much alacrity, that they soon
retreated, carrying with them all their killed and wounded, except one, which
they could not get away. They were seen by the whites dragging their
killed and wounded over logs and into the cane-brake. Judge Hugh L. White
was in this engagement, then a very young man ,and was among the first that
ascended the bank of the river, under the fire of the enemy. Evans had two
men killed, Wear and Prewitt. John Wallace, who was wounded, died the
night after the battle.
General Sevier, hearing the firing, wheeled his detachment about, and pushed with all possible speed to the assistance of Evans, and came up just as the Indians had retreated. The two men, Wear and Prewitt, that were killed, were taken down the river to an Indian village, buried in a cellar in an Indian cabin , and the cabin burnt over them, to prevent the Indians from finding and mangling their bodies, as was their custom. General Sevier then marched the whole army back across the Etowah, crossed the Coosawattee, and moved down the river, destroying all the towns as he went.
Floyd County was originally settled by persons from
the older parts of Georgia, South Carolina, and Tennessee.
Cave Spring is situated on Little Cedar Creek in Vann's Valley. This spring issues from a mountain east of the valley. The force of the water is sufficient to turn on overshot mill. There is a cave fifty yards from the spring. You descend into it at an angle of ninety degrees. Beautiful stalactites are in the different apartments of the cave. The creek formed by the spring runs off with great swiftness, almost as swift as the mountain stream, until it enters into Big Cedar. There are several other springs in this vicinity, the water of which is just as good as that of the Cave Spring. About a mile and half northeast of Rome, near Mr. Mitchell's plantation, is Nix's Cave. The interior is filled with stalactites. Mr. Nix resides near this cave, and is always ready to guide visitors through its numerous apartments. On Mr. Mitchell's plantation is Woodward's Cave, formerly notorious as a depository for stolen goods. The entrance is through a large rock, which is nearly one hundred feet perpendicular. There are a great many small caves in various parts of the county.
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