Georgia Genealogy Trails

"Where your Journey Begins"


Sylvester, the present county seat and chief trade center of Worth County, has a population of about two thousand. It is located on the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad and the Georgia, Ashburn, Sylvester & Camilla Railway. It has an excellent train service, many of the through trains from the north and west passing through on the Atlantic Coast Line going south, and is therefore easily accessible. It has many modern business houses representing all lines of trade, among them several large department stores, one of the strongest and best conducted banks in South Georgia, an up-to-date moving picture theater, fire department, electric power and water works, sufficient electric power for all purposes being available from the Georgia Power Company's hydro-electric plant on the Flint River near Albany, sanitary sewerage system, and paved streets.

Sylvester is a beautiful little city located at the intersection of two of the main trunk highways from north to south and from west to east, and has many beautiful and attractive homes, with lovely parks and gardens. Its modern churches, Baptist, Methodist and Presbyterian, and schools are among the best in the state-commodious and well equipped in every way. McPhaul Institute, named for W. H. McPhaul (familiarly known as Uncle Bill,) founder of Sylvester, has an enrollment of about six hundred pupils and employs twenty-two teachers. It is an accredited school.

The Sylvester Local, one of the best weekly newspapers in the state, is published at Sylvester.

The foundation of the present city was laid out in 1893, and was called "Isabella Station." In 1894, the name was changed to Sylvester, and in 1898 the town of Sylvester was incorporated by an Act of the Legislature. Its name comes from the latin words "silva" meaning wood, and "vester" meaning your.

The first mayor, and one of the earliest settlers, was V. H. McPhaul, and the first councilmen were C. V. Hillhouse, W. A. Jones, J. G. Polhill and Dr. W. L. Sikes.

City Officers of 1933

Mayor: P. M. Lancaster; Councilmen: W. T. Davis, John T. Cochran, N. M. Rhodes, B. Gleaton; Clerk: R. B. Pollard; City Recorder: Clifford Grubbs; Electrician: Curtis Bennett, Sr.; Chief of Police: John F. Deariso; Chief Fire Department: Hugh Connoly.

City Officers Elected to Take Office in 1934.

Mayor: Judge Chesley W. Monk; Councilmen, Clerk, Recorder, Electrician, Chief of Police and other officers were the same as in 1933.

[Source:] History of Worth County, Georgia : for the first eighty years,1854-1934. Macon, Ga.: Grubbs, Lillie Martin, J.W. Burke Co., 1934.

Sylvester, the county seat of Worth County, is on the Atlantic Coast Line railway and was incorporated by act of the legislature in 1897. In 1900, it had in its corporate limits 552 inhabitants and 1,612 in its entire militia district. It has a money order post office, with rural free delivery, two banks, express and telegraph offices, saw-mills, two flour and grist mills and several stores doing a profitable business. About 3,000 bales of cotton are handled annually by the merchants and shippers of the town and the people have good school and church privileges. [Source]: Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons; Transcribed by Kristen Bisanz


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