Barrow County - Metro Atlanta Guidebook

A Brief Look At The History Of Barrow County Georgia

Barrow County Georgia was formed in 1914 as a way of settling a dispute among the citizens of the City of Winder. Created from portions of Jackson, Gwinnett and Walton Counties, the county was named for David Crenshaw "Uncle Dave" Barrow, long-time chancellor of the University of Georgia.

Barrow County was the scene of one of the few Union defeats during Sherman's "Atlanta Campaign". A group of skirmishes generally referred to as "Stoneman's Raid" also took place in Barrow County. The final destruction by Sherman's cavalry here occurred on August 3, 1864, five miles northwest of Winder at King's Tanyard. Two brigades that escaped from Sunshine Church in Jones County intended to resupply in Athens but turned west when they encountered resistance. One brigade reached Federal lines, but troopers under Colonel Horace Capron were surprised by Confederate Cavalry. Capron lost 430 men to the Southerners; he and 6 men reached Sherman on foot. The site is just southeast of the intersection of GA 11 and County Line-Auburn Road. A small granite monument honoring the unknown Confederate dead stands at Triangle Park in Rosehill Cemetery. One Confederate killed at Jug Tavern was reburied here in 1907. Extensive research initiated by a relative in 1971 identified the man as Martin Van Buren Parkhurst of Kentucky. He had been purposefully buried near the spring of a local Unionist.

Bethlehem United Methodist Church (1790; present building 1949) was a gathering spot for area troops, and the local women sewed clothing for the soldiers at an arbored campground.

Rockwell Universalist Church built in 1839 (present picturesque building was constructed in 1881) was the site of a Confederate training camp.

Barrow County is also home to one of only 15 covered bridges remaining in Georgia, the Kilgore covered bridge.

The famous train wreck at Barbury Creek occurred on March 30, 1893. Newspapers reported that the trestle over the creek gave way while the train was crossing.

W. B. McCants registered the first car in Barrow County Georgia in 1905 and by 1908 a total of 34 autos were registered in Winder, giving it the title "Auto Center of Northeast Georgia".

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