Available on Amazon
The first gold rush in America happened in Georgia in 1828, when gold was discovered in the northwestern part of the state. This discovery led to the creation of the Dahlonega Mint, which produced gold coins until the outbreak of the Civil War.
Thomas County, located in southwest Georgia, has a rich history that dates back to its establishment in 1825. The county was named after General Jett Thomas, a hero of the War of 1812. The area was primarily inhabited by indigenous Creek Indians before European settlers arrived.

During the antebellum period, Thomas County experienced significant growth and prosperity due to the success of its plantation economy. Large plantations, primarily cultivating cotton and tobacco, flourished in the area, relying heavily on enslaved labor. The county was known for its fertile soil, allowing for high agricultural yields.

The Civil War had a profound impact on Thomas County. Many local men enlisted in the Confederate Army, and the county played a strategic role due to its location between major railroad lines. The Battle of Thomasville in 1865 marked the last conflict between Union and Confederate forces east of the Mississippi River. Although the county was spared widespread destruction during the war, the economic consequences were severe.

After the Civil War, Thomas County slowly rebuilt its economy by diversifying its agricultural production and attracting new industries. The arrival of the railroad in the late 19th century bolstered the county's transportation infrastructure and facilitated trade. By the early 20th century, Thomasville, the county seat, had established itself as a popular winter resort for wealthy northern tourists, contributing to its economic growth.

Today, Thomas County continues to thrive as a vibrant community with a mix of agricultural, industrial, and service sectors. It has preserved its historic charm with numerous antebellum homes and landmarks. With its rich history and natural beauty, Thomas County attracts visitors from around the country, offering a glimpse into Georgia's past while embracing progress and economic development.

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

  • 1825: Thomas County is created by an act of the Georgia General Assembly.
  • 1826: The county is named after Jett Thomas, a prominent soldier and legislator.
  • 1831: The county seat is established in a small settlement known as Thomasville.
  • 1870: The completion of the railroad leads to an increase in population and economic growth.
  • 1885: Thomasville becomes known as the "Winter Resort of the South" due to its mild climate.
  • 1925: Fire destroys much of Thomasville's central business district.
  • 1960s-1970s: Civil Rights Movement brings desegregation and social change to the county.
  • 1990s: Thomas County experiences rapid population growth and development.