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Boundaries described in the Lottery Act of 1821. Part added to Pulaski County, 1826; a part to Lee County, 1827. Named after Colonel John Dooly, who was murdered by the Tories in 1780. Length, 35 m.; breadth, 32m.; Area Square miles, 1,120. The chief stream is the Flint River. The creeks are Pennahatchee, Hogcrawl, Lampkin's Limestone and Cedar. The face of the country is level; much of the land is productive. Lands which a few years ago were considered worthless, now command high prices. Vienna is the county seat, situated on the waters of Pennahatchee Creek, distant from Milledgeville ninety-five miles. Drayton is a mile and a half from Flint River. Travellers' Rest is in the northwest corner of the county. The climate is temperate. Remote from the water-courses, the country is regarded healthy. The cases of longevity with which we are acquainted are the following: Mr. Wadsworth died at 103; Mrs. Napier, aged 100 ; Mrs. Wadsworth, aged over 100; and Mrs. Bradshaw, aged over 80, were all alive a few years since. Extract from the Census of 1850. Dwellings, 962; families, 962; white males, 2,844; white females, 2,736; free coloured males, 4; free coloured females, 2. Total free population, 5,586; slaves, 2,775. Deaths, 110. Farms, 663 ; manufacturing establishments, 8. Value of real estate, $1,106,253; value of personal estate, 81,721,560

Source: "Historical Collections Of Georgia", by George White, 1855 Transcribed and Submitted by Brenda Wiesner

Dooly County was obtained by a treaty with the Indians in 1821. It was surveyed by William Oliver. The first court was in a place where Vienna is now located but was soon moved to Drayton, but was again moved to the original site and the town was named Vienna. The court-house was burned in 1850 and few records were preserved. Prominent among other citizens of Dooly in civil and political affairs are found the names of early citizens of our territory: Fords, Fillyaws, Collins, Grahams, Rev. William Pate, Elijah B. Pate, Jas. D. Pate, Rev. Warren Dykes, Rev. Isaac Hobby, William Eldridge, and others.

Some information of old pioneer citizens of what is now Turner County, but was then Dooly: Elijah B. Pate and James D. Pate were the sons of Rev. William Pate, Revolutionary soldier, whose grave was marked by the Knox Conway Chapter, Daughters of American Revolution. Both Elijah and James Pate were men of wealth and wisdom for that day. Their advice on all matters was freely sought and as a rule, carefully followed. Elijah B. Pate was a noted Bible student. Hon. John S. Pate, son of Elijah B. Pate, late of Cordele, was a successful business man of sterling character. James D. Pate died at the age of forty-seven and his son Bennett Pate, a life long citizen of this territory, was considered by a great host of citizens to have been the best informed man in Wilcox County. Col. J. H. Pate, of Ashburn, son of the late B. S. Pate and grandson of James D. Pate, is a prominent lawyer and stockman. S. E. Pate and Arthur Pate, prominent business men of the Amboy district, are the sons of Bennett Pate. Rev. John Ben Pate, writer of this history, is also a son of Bennett Pate.

Polly Ann Story, who married Alfred Davis, was a daughter of Samuel Story and a grandaughter of Rev. William Pate. She was the mother of two of Turner County's most prominent citizens, D. H. Davis, a man noted for intelligence as well as wealth, and Rev. J. J. Davis, who has done a remarkable work in the ministry and scores of churches are the monuments to his zeal. She was also the grandmother of Col. A. J. Davis, business man and farmer. Samuel Story, about 1855, moved to Worth County and his progeny is numerous, filling various offices of trust, among whom are Dr. W. L. Story, H. L. Story, Alex Story, Sr., Alex Story, Jr., Sheriff of Turner County, and John J. Story, prominent attorney and City Clerk for a number of years. Rev. William Pate married Tempty Parkerson. Elijah Bennett Pate married Mary Smith. James D. Pate married Jency Moore. Maxie Pate married Miss Katie Holt. Josiah Fillyaw married a Miss Register.

The Dooly County records were all burned in 1847 and the following dates of marriages are approximated:

1835-Richard Story - Sarah Willis; Joe Wheeles - Jane Lambert.
1845-Mr. Dixon - Nancy Story.
1846-Alfred Davis - Polly Ann Story; Mr. Potts - Polly Dykes; Elijah Pate - Nancy Nipper.
1860-Alf Newell - Lucenda Pate.

Rev. Warren Dykes married a Mrs. Simpson who had three daughters, who married as follows:

1851-Rev. Isaac Hobby - Harriet Simpson, Warren Dykes, M. G.
1857-Jesse Hobby - Liza Simpson, William King, J. P.
1860-William Hobby - Miss Simpson.

Rev. Isaac Hobby moved to Worth County, lived to a ripe old age, and was a successful pastor of country churches.
Source: History of Turner County. Atlanta, Ga.: Pate, John Ben.. Stein Print. Co., 1933.


Dooly County was created by Legislative Acts, May 15th, 1821, from lands acquired from the Creeks, under the first treaty of Indian Spring in the same year. It was named for Colonel John Dooly, of the Revolutionary War. When organized, Dooly included Crisp, and parts of Lee and Worth Counties, and extended from "Travelers Rest" near Montezuma to Albany, and from the Flint River to the Ocmulgee. Vienna was first settled in 1814, as a relay station on the old stagecoach line between Macon and Albany, or Pindar town, as the terminus on the east side of Flint River was then called. What is now Vienna, was first called Brownville, from a predominance of the family of that name, although this name was not official.

Dr. C. T. Stovall has letters in his possession dated 1831 to 1833 from Berrien, stating that the population was 33 souls all told, and "mostly Browns." The original county seat was a little town on the Flint River called Berrien, the name having been changed in 1833 to Drayton. But this site failed to give satisfaction. On December 23, 1839, an act was approved appointing William Smith, David Scarboro, Joel Dorsey, James Oliver, Thomas Cobb, and John Crumpler, to select a new site for public buildings. At the same time, a provision was made to compensate the owners of the property in Drayton. In the late forties, the county seat was changed to Vienna; and on February 18th, 1854, the new county seat was incorporated as a town with the following commissioners: Chas. H. Everett, Seth Kellam, Lemuel M. Lasseter, John Brown, and Stephen B. Stovall.

This Government lasted but a year or two, when a Mayor and Board of Aldermen were elected. The first members were Dr. Joseph Forbes, Dr. S. B. Stovall, H. G. Lamar, W. R. Mims, and others. The first Court House built in Vienna, was of rough hewn logs and was located on the north side of the Public Square. The second was built in the center of the Park, where it was burned in 1847 with all of its legal records. This was replaced by a wooden structure and remained until 1891 when this building was moved and converted into a hotel, and a modern brick structure was placed on the west side of the Public Square. Among the oldest settlers were, Brown, Dawson, Monger, Bothwell, Meriwether, Key, Petee, Sheffield, Bottom, Lasseter, Adams, Davies, Britt, Rogers, and Mclnvale. Vienna is situated in about the central part of the County, and is a flourishing town with a population well beyond 2,000 and increasing yearly. She is surrounded by a rich farming belt, the chief products of which are cotton, corn, wheat, oats, hay, potatoes, etc. There are two Railroads running through Vienna : Georgia, Southern Florida, and Atlanta, Birmingham and Atlantic.

These Railroads not only invite travel, but they render fine freight rates. The largest Manufacturing Concern is the Empire Cotton Oil Co. There are four flourishing Banks: Bank of Vienna, Dooly Saving Bank, J. P. Heard Sons, and First National. The city has a fine retail trade and is well supplied with substantial mercantile concerns, and those industrial and business branches which go to make up a progressive city. One of the principal factors in the growth and development of Vienna is its fine school facilities. There has just been completed a splendid building, devoted to the white school, costing about $30,000.00 The negro school is also in a flourishing condition.

There are three white churches; Methodist, Baptist, and Episcopal; each with a large membership. Negroes have Methodist and Baptist churches. Vienna is a dry town, and has been for twenty years. Vienna has strong lodges of Masons, Knights of Pythias, Woodmen, and Odd Fellows. There are many splendid homes, which have a happy blending of all that is noble and beautiful in architecture. These houses have great columns, wide halls, and broad verandas, which express to us the solidity of character and open hearted hospitality of her people. The people of Vienna are refined, cultured, patriotic. There is an unusual amount of wealth in Vienna, and a number of young men and women attend College each year.

The atrocities committed so frequently upon women and children by the Seminole Indians in the southern section of the State, so stirred the whole nation in the year 1817 that war was declared against the Seminoles. These Indians lived in Florida and would invade Georgia territory, steal, pillage and murder the white settlers. At this time Florida was under the dominion of Spain, and since the landing of Oglethorpe these Indians had entertained great animosity against the people of Georgia.

The Seminoles had been reinforced by a band of seceded Indians from the Creeks of Georgia, and known as "Red Sticks", who would not recognize the treaty made at Fort Jackson, in which the Creeks had ceded a large portion of their territory to the whites. These Red Sticks carried a great many run-away negroes from Georgia and South Carolina, who also joined the Seminole Indians in their frequent marauding expeditions against the southern frontier of Georgia. On March 30th, 1817, Governor David B. Mitchell of Georgia wrote to Hon. John C. Calhoun, Secretary of War, the following communication:

"By yesterday's mail I received a letter from Mr. Timothy Barnad, who resides on Flint River in the Indian territory, in which he observes: "I have been informed two days past, from below where the Red Stick class reside that a party has been down near St. Mary's and murdered a woman and two children and brought off some horses. The Red Sticks have commenced their war dances again, which is proof that they mean to commence hostilities. Our forts, Crawford and Gaines, have been evacuated, and this has encouraged the Red Sticks, who believe that our troops were afraid to continue."

This communication caused the Secretary of War to order General Jackson from Nashville with two regiments of soldiers to join General Gaines, who was already in South Georgia with his brigade, and prevent further hostilities. On January 20th, 1818, General Jackson wrote to the Secretary of War:

"The troops I have with me joined with the Georgia troops on the southern frontier will enable me to inflict speedy and merited chastisements on the deluded Seminoles."

The point then that the troops were directed to march to was situated at the junction of the Flint and the Chattahoochee Rivers. All of the territory between Hartford, now Hawkinsville, and Fort Scott was entirely roadless, with nothing but Indian trails, except through this section the trail had been made by General Blackshear during the war of 1812 was still intact. General Jackson then commenced his march from Fort Hawkins, now Macon, to Hartford, now Hawkinsville, and from thence to Fort Early in Dooly County, and passed directly over the spot where the City of Cordele now stands.

General Jackson was guided by a friendly Chehaw Indian through where Cordele now stands and along the whole route from Fort Hartsford to Fort Early many thrilling acts of bravery were performed by the Indians and General Jackson's men. Near the residence of Mr. J. L. Wheeler a battle was fought between General Jackson's men and the Indians. Three United States soldiers were killed and were buried on the Blackshear trail about a half a mile from the residence of Mr. Wheeler. This battle was known as the battle of Skin Cypress Pond. Several Indians were also killed in this battle. These three graves have been lost and no stone marks their last resting place, and the land is now being cultivated where these soldiers were buried.

Fort Early was erected under General Early's administration by General Blackshear in 1812, and afterwards used by General Cain's army and General Jackson's army in defense against the Seminole Indians. It was on January 2nd, 1818, when Major F. E. Heard was ordered by General Glascock to meet General Leigh, who was proceeding from Hartford with packs of provisions for the army. At Cedar Creek a halt was made; there was great difficulty in crossing the stream. Captain Leigh and a private of Captain Avery's company, by the name of Samuel Loftis, started across the stream. Major Heard at that time attempted to dissuade these two men from crossing because the growth was so thick on the other side of the stream that it seemed an opportune place and time for an attack by the Indians from ambush. Major Heard insisted that it would be too dangerous for these two brave soldiers to cross, but they were insistent and were allowed to proceed, but just as they got across they were fired upon by a party of 30 Indians and both shot dead on the spot.

Major Heard had only 27 men and with these carrying the provisions, he then proceeded to some small breast works near by, that had been thrown up several years previous by General Blackshear,and in this way defended himself from the Indian attacks. Mr. John Bridges and Captain Snother were sent across the river to inform General Glascock, who sent reinforcements; and these 27 men with all the provisions proceeded on the way. Up until a few years ago the Smoke family had in their possession a wooden peg from the old fort, on which General Jackson, it is said, hung his hat during his stay at Port Early.

Dooly County was created by Legislative Acts, May 15th , 1821, from lands acquired from the Creeks, under the first treaty of Indian Spring in the same year. It was named for Col. John Dooly, of the Revolution. When organized, Dooly included Crisp, and parts of Lee and Worth, and extended from "Travelers Rest," near Montezuma to Albany, and from Flint River to the Ocmulgee.

Vienna, the county seat of Dooly county, located on the Georgia Southern & Florida railway, was incorporated as a town by act of the legislature in 1854, though it had been the county seat for years prior to that date. It has a court house, money order postoffice with rural free delivery, two banks, express and telegraph offices, successful commercial establishments, extensive saw and planing mills, a cotton factory and oil mill. There is a heavy trade, not only in cotton, but also in pine products such as lumber, turpentine and rosin. The lumber trade has given it considerable growth in recent years and since the formation of the new county of Crisp, of which Cordele is the county seat, it is the largest town in Dooly county. It has good church edifices and excellent schools. According to the census of 1900 the population was 1,035.

[Source]: Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, Arranged in Cyclopedic Form. Transcribed by Kristen Bisanz


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