Polk County, Georgia

Polk County, Georgia, located in the northwest part of the state, has a rich history that spans centuries. The area was originally inhabited by Native American tribes, including the Creek and Cherokee, who lived off the land and relied on farming and hunting for sustenance.

European settlement began in the late 18th century, when pioneers from Virginia and the Carolinas began to move into the region. The county was named after James K. Polk, the 11th President of the United States, and was officially established in 1851. Polk County was primarily agrarian, with cotton being the predominant crop during the antebellum period.

During the Civil War, Polk County played a significant role as a transportation hub for Confederate forces. Railroads and roads connected the region to other parts of Georgia and Alabama, making it a strategically important location for both the Confederacy and the Union. Numerous skirmishes and battles took place in and around Polk County during the war, leaving a lasting impact on the community.

Post-war, the county experienced economic and social changes. The establishment of the cotton industry declined, and many agricultural workers transitioned to other fields, such as mining and manufacturing. The arrival of the railroad in the late 19th century facilitated the growth of the county's economy, bringing new industries and opportunities.

Today, Polk County maintains its agricultural roots while also embracing diverse industries, including textiles, automotive manufacturing, and tourism. The county is home to natural attractions like the Cedartown Skydive and Polk County Historical Society Museum, which showcase the area's rich heritage. With a blend of historical significance and modern industry, Polk County continues to thrive and evolve.
Brief timeline of the history of Polk County, Georgia:

  • 1832 - Polk County is established as the 61st county in Georgia.
  • 1837 - Cedartown is incorporated as the county seat of Polk County.
  • 1851 - The Etowah Iron and Manufacturing Company is founded in Polk County, leading to the growth of the iron industry in the region.
  • 1864 - During the Civil War, Polk County suffers from military actions, including the Battle of Griswoldville.
  • 1870s - The arrival of the railroad boosts economic development in Polk County.
  • 1909 - The first electric streetcar line is introduced in Cedartown.
  • 1925 - Polk County's first hospital, Polk General Hospital, is established.
  • 1985 - Rockmart High School in Polk County is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • 1997 - The famous film "Sweet Home Alabama" is partially filmed in Polk County.

This timeline provides a concise overview of the key events in the history of Polk County, Georgia.