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Putnam County, Georgia

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Please add profiles of those who were born, lived or died in Putnam County, Georgia.

Official Website

History

Putnam County is named in honor of Israel Putnam, a hero of the French and Indian War and a general in the American Revolutionary War. It was settled by European Americans after the war, as migrants moved down from the Upper South. The county was created on December 10, 1807, by an act of the Georgia General Assembly.

Following the invention of the cotton gin, which could profitably process short-staple cotton, the county was developed for cotton cultivation of that type. It thrived in the upland areas, where plantations were developed and worked by the field labor of thousands of slaves.

During the 1919 Red Summer there were many incidents of racial violence including an arson attack where almost a dozen black community buildings were burnt down in late May 1919. The Wheeling Intelligencer claimed the buildings were burnt down because of a "minor racial clash at Dennis Station." During this time armed black and white mobs patrolled the area in fear of each other.

In the first half of the 20th century, thousands of blacks left the state during the Great Migration from 1920 to 1960. The county population dropped by more than half during this period following mechanization of agriculture and as rural workers moved into cities. Since the late 20th century, population has increased. The white population of the county has grown since the turn of the 21st century: in 2010 African Americans comprised 26 percent of the county population, a drop from nearly 42% in 2000.[citation needed]

In the 21st century, dairy farming is more important to Putnam County than cotton. It annually holds the nationally known Dairy Festival.

Adjacent Counties

Cities & Communities

  • Eatonton (County Seat)
  • Crooked Creek
  • Harmony
  • Warfield
  • Willard

Links

Wikipedia

Nat'l Reg. of Hist. Places

Oconee National Forest (part)