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Georgia was the site of the first European settlement in what is now the United States. In 1565, the Spanish established a settlement on St. Simons Island, which is now part of Georgia.
Tift County is located in south-central Georgia and is named after Nelson Tift, a prominent southern politician and businessman. The county's history dates back to the early 19th century when it was originally inhabited by Native American tribes such as the Muscogee Creek. The county was officially formed on August 17, 1905, when it was carved out of Berrien County.

The area was primarily an agricultural region, with cotton being the main crop. The arrival of the railroad in the late 19th century brought increased economic growth to Tift County, making it an important transportation hub for neighboring counties. As the cotton industry thrived, numerous farms and plantations were established, leading to the growth of small towns in the area.

During the 20th century, Tift County faced the challenges of economic recessions and natural disasters. The Great Depression of the 1930s resulted in a decline in cotton prices and a decrease in agricultural production. However, the county gradually recovered with the help of federal programs implemented during the New Deal era.

In recent decades, Tift County has diversified its economy beyond agriculture. The retail and service sectors have grown significantly, modernizing the county and attracting new businesses. Tift County is also known for its rich cultural heritage, showcasing the history and traditions of the region through various museums and events. Today, Tift County continues to thrive as a vibrant community with a diverse economy and a strong sense of pride in its history.

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

  • 1905 - Tift County was established on August 17.
  • 1908 - Tifton was incorporated as a city on July 25.
  • 1912 - The Tift County courthouse was completed.
  • 1937 - The Tifton Municipal Airport was established.
  • 1975 - The Tifton Mall, the first enclosed shopping center in the area, opened.
  • 1984 - The Georgia Agrirama, a living history museum, was opened.
  • 1998 - The Tift Theatre for the Performing Arts was restored and reopened.
  • 2005 - The Tifton-Tift County Public Library was expanded and renovated.
  • 2017 - Tift County celebrated its 112th anniversary.