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Union County, GA
History

At the time Union county was formed there was a fierce political strife between the nullifiers and the Union men, and the new county was called Union because of the devotion of its people to the union of States and the sympathy of a Union Legislature with their views.

The account we have given of Gilmer is suited to Union, for there is but little difference between the two counties. Mountains, only broken into by small and narrow valleys, cover the county.

The people were mainly emigrants from North Carolina and generally poor, and the farms are generally sterile. Along the river there are some beautiful valleys and some bodies of excellent land.

Blairsville, the county site, is quite a small village peopled by some very good people.

There are a few gold mines in the county which have now and then produced a good yield of gold, but the mining resources of the county are limited.

There were only a few slaves in the county when the emancipation proclamation was issued.

The settlers in Union are of the same class as those who inhabit the other counties written of. They have the best Virginia and North Carolina names. There are no people in Georgia of better blood than these mountaineers, and from the families of this hill country have gone men of brawn and brain to all sections of the southern country.

Union has been long difficult to reach. Lying in the lap of the Blue Ridge, with mountains on all sides, it has been out of the lines of travel. There was little for its first inhabitants to do save to make a plain livelihood by farming, and they have been content with small returns from their labors. They made but little for market. Some cabbages, some apples, a few cattle and a little bacon were about all they had to sell. They lived among themselves and by the aid of their own resources. There has been a steady improvement among them for some years, and when a railway opens a market for the fine timber, and when fruit is grown for market and the charming scenery of the country draws the tourist, Union will be appreciated as it deserves to be.

Source: "The story of Georgia and the Georgia people, 1732 to 1860" By George Gilman Smith
Submitted by a Friend of Free Genealogy


UNION COUNTY.
Union County was laid out from Cherokee and organized in 1832. At the time of its organization there was a great deal of discussion in Georgia over Union and States' rights. John Thomas, who had been chosen by the people a representative from the new county, being asked by the legislature to suggest a name for it replied, "Union! for none but Union men live in the county." The legislature was strongly of the same sentiment and accepted the name.
 This county is bounded as follows: on the north by North Carolina, on the northeast and east by Towns county, on the southeast by White and Lumpkin, on the south by Lumpkin, and on the west by Fannin.
 Notley creek and Teccoa river are the principal streams. From them are caught mountain trout and horny-heads. The pleasant summer climate, bracing atmosphere and cold, freestone water, render this a healthy and delightful section of the State.
 The southern part of the county is traversed by the Blue Ridge with many peaks, among the most noted of which are Ivy Log, Cooper's, Creek Blood, Track Rock, Ball and Round Top Mountain. Track Rock," which is seven miles east of Blairsville, is in a gap of the Enchanted Mountain. This rock is so called, because, at the headwaters of Brass Town creek, where it is a species of soapstone, it is marked by tracks of turkeys, deer, horses, bears, and by what are supposed to be the footprints of Indians.
 On Notely river, or creek, as it is also called, about one and a half miles from Blairsville, there once occurred a battle between the Cherokee and Creek Indians over some disputed territory, and these images are said to be hieroglyphics made to commemorate the event
 The oak and hickory table-lands are good, and those of the creeks and river bottoms are excellent The chief productions are corn, wheat, rye, oats, tobacco, potatoes, cabbage of the finest kind, turnips, peaches and apples.
 The average yield to the acre of the various crops is: corn, 20 bushels; oats, from 15 to 30 bushels, according to location; wheat, from 6 to 12 bushels; rye from 5, on ordinary lands, to 15 bushels, and more on the best soils; Irish potatoes, 100 bushels; 6weet potatoes, from 100 to 200 bushels; peas, 25 bushels; ground-peas, 50 bushels; hay from crab and herds-grass, 1.500 pounds, and from clover, between 2,000 and 3,000 pounds; corn fodder, 450 pounds; sorghum syrup, 100 gallons.
 With proper attention this is a great country for grass. Red top and clover do well, and can be made to yield abundantly. Cattle and sheep run in the woods in summer and thrive on the pasturage afforded by the native grasses. In winter they are fed on corn fodder, hay, cotton seed meal, hulls and bran.
 Beef cattle constitute the chief reliance of the people for money, and renewed interest is being shown in the improvement of breeds. In 1890 Union county had 720 horses, 606 mules, 9 donkeys, 8,623 ewine, 5,796 cattle, 1,074 of which were working oxen, 1,830 were milch-cows, 8,984 sheep, with a wool-clip of 12,253 pounds, and 67,843 domestic fowls.
 Some of the productions of the county were 420,397 gallons of milk, 91,880 pounds of butter, 20 pounds of cheese, 15,541 pounds of honey, and 68,512 dozens of eggs.
 In the western part of the county are found iron ore, alum, sulphate of iron and granite quartz. There are large quarries of millstone of excellent quality on Ivy Log and Brass Town creeks, on which same streams and on Coosa creek' gold has been found. There is in this same section of the county variegated marble.
 Blairsville, the county site, was named for James Blair of Habersham, which county he represented in the legislature for many years. It has a new courthouse just completed which cost $14,000.
 The forest timbers which cover about 100,000 acres, are oak of various kinds, hickory, poplar, white and spruce pine, gum, walnut, black locust, maple and laurel. A few sawmills are engaged in cutting out lumber, but the output is small
The religious denominations are Baptist, Methodist and Presbyterian, and their churches are scattered throughout the county.
There are 45 schools belonging to the State public school system. Of these 44 are for white and 1 for colored. The average attendance is 1,128 white and 22 colored.
 The products of the county are marketed for the most part in Gainesville and Atlanta,
 The area of Union county is 325 square miles, or 208,000 acres. Population by census of 1900, 8,481, a gain of 732 since 1890; school fund, $5,777.72.
 By the Comptroller-General's report for 1900 there are: acres of improved land, 202,356; of wild land, 33,573; average value per acre of improved land, $1.44; of wild land, $0.26; city property, $12,800; money, etc., $65,999; merchandise, $16,416; household furniture, $27,043; farm and other animals, $102,046; plantation and mechanical tools, $14,571; watches, jewelry, etc., $874; value of all other property, $9,159; real estate, $314,961; personal estate, $238,943. Aggregate value of property, $553,904.
 Property returned by colored taxpayers: number of acres, 157; value, $325; household furniture, $196; farm and other animals, $292.00; plantation tools, $24.00; value of all other property, $5.00. Aggregate value of whole property, $842.00.
 The tax returns for 1901 show a decrease of $5,803 in the value of all property since 1900.
 Population of Union county by sex and color, according to the census of 1900: white males, 4,130; white females, 4,223; total white, 8,353; colored males, 66; colored females, 62; total colored, 128.
 Domestic animals in barns and inclosures, not on farms or ranges, June 1, 1900: No report.
Georgia, historical and industrial By Georgia. Dept. of Agriculture

Towns, Hamlets and Villages

Union County was created from Cherokee in 1832. At the time of its organization there was a great deal of agitation in Georgia over the question of state rights. John Thomas, who had been elected to represent the new county in the general assembly, when asked what the name should be, at once replied "Union, for none but union men live in the county." The legislature accepted his suggestion and in this way the county was named. It lies in the northern part of the state and is bounded on the north by the State of North Carolina, on the northeast by Towns county, on the southeast by White, on the south by Lumpkin and on the west by Fannin. It is in a mountainous district, the southern part of the county being traversed by the Blue Ridge, and there are several isolated peaks. The most noted of the mountains are Ivy Log, Cooper's, Track Rock, Round Top, Etna and Frozen Knob.    Notely creek and the Toccoa river are the principal streams. The land in the valleys is fertile and good crops are raised. The agricultural products are corn, wheat, oats, potatoes, apples, peaches and an unusually fine quality of cabbages. The natural grasses afford good pasturage and stock raising is carried on to some extent. Alum, iron, sulphate of iron, granite quartz and buhrstone are found in various places in the county. Gold is found on Coosa creek and in the same locality are fine deposits of variegated marble. Poplar and several varieties of hard-wood exist in considerable quantities, but little lumber is manufactured, owing chiefly to lack of transportation facilities. There are no railroads in the county, the nearest line being the Murphy division of the Atlanta, Knoxville & Northern.     Blairsville is the county seat and only town of importance. The little village of Track­ rock, about seven miles northeast of Blairsville, occupies a gap in the Enchanted Mountain. (q. v.) The population in 1900 was 8,841, an increase of 732 during the decade.
Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, Arranged in Cyclopedic Form Transcribed by Kristen Bisanz

Suches, a post-hamlet in the southern part of Union county, is not far from the Lumpkin county line. The nearest railroad station is Blueridge.
Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, Arranged in Cyclopedic Form Transcribed by Kristen Bisanz

Spilo, a post-hamlet of Union county, is five miles north of Blairsville on a branch of the Notely river. Culberson, N. C., is the most convenient railroad station.
Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, Arranged in Cyclopedic Form Transcribed by Kristen Bisanz

Fain, a post-hamlet of Union county, with a population of 37 in 1900, is on the headwaters of the Notely river, about nine miles from Blairsville.  The nearest railroad station is Murphy, N. C.
[Source: Georgia: Sketches, Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions & People, Vol. 2, Publ. 1906 Transcribed By:  Maggie Coleman]

Gaddistown, a post-village of Union county, is on the Toccoa river, about thirteen miles southwest of Blairsville.  The population in 1900 was 48.  Whitepath, on the Atlanta, Knoxville & Northern railroad, is the most convenient station.
(Source: Georgia Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, VOL II, by Candler & Evans, Publ. 1906. Transcribed by Renae Donaldson)

Hood, a post-hamlet of Union county, is located about four miles southeast of Blairsville. Culberson, N.C., is the nearest railway station.
(Source: Georgia Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, VOL II, by Candler & Evans, Publ. 1906. Transcribed by Kim Mohler)

Joplin, a post-hamlet of Union county, is located about three miles west of Blairsville. Culberson, N. C, is the most convenient railroad station.
(Source: Georgia Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, VOL II, by Candler & Evans, Publ. 1906. Transcribed by Tracy McAllister)

Otto, a post-village of Union county, is on a branch of the Notely river, three or four miles south of Blairsville. It is a trading center for the neighborhood in which it is located and in 1900 reported a population of 78.
Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, Arranged in Cyclopedic Form- Transcribed by Kristen Bisanz

Ponder, a post-hamlet of Union county, is in a mountainous district, twelve miles southeast of Blairsville.  Clarkesville is the most convenient railroad station.
Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, Transcribed by Kristen Bisanz

Quebec, a post-hamlet in the southern part of Union county, is near the base of Blood mountain. The nearest railroad station is Blueridge, the county seat of Fannin county.
Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, Transcribed by Kristen Bisanz

Sarah, a post-hamlet of Union county, is in a mountainous district near the Lumpkin county line. The nearest railroad station is Blueridge.
Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, Arranged in Cyclopedic Form Transcribed by Kristen Bisanz

Ruby, a post-hamlet in the western part of Union county, is not far from the eastern base of the Blue Ridge. Mineral Bluff, on the Atlanta, Knoxville & Northern, is the nearest railroad station.
Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, Arranged in Cyclopedic Form Transcribed by Kristen Bisanz

Vayles, a post-hamlet of Union county, is almost on the North Carolina line in the valley of the Notely River. Culberson, N. C., four miles northwest, is the nearest railroad station.
Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, Arranged in Cyclopedic Form Transcribed by Kristen Bisanz





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