“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Cedartown in Polk County, Georgia — The American South (South Atlantic)

Founding of Cedartown

Founding of Cedartown Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, May 5, 2022
1. Founding of Cedartown Marker
Inscription.  The earliest known inhabitants in the Cedartown area were the Cherokee Indians, who had taken over the surrounding territory from the Creek Indians in the 1760's. Cherokee settlements in the area were known as Char'le Town, Cedar Town and Clean Town. By the 1820's white traders and scouts began to settle in the area, and trading posts were established near Tanyard Branch and the Big Spring. After gold was discovered in the northeast part of the state, Georgia pushed for the removal of the Cherokee Indian Nation by opening their land to settlement in 1832. As a result of land lotteries held by the state, white settlers streamed into the area. A post office was established in Cedar Town in 1833, and the First Baptist Church founded in 1835.

The new settlers of Cedar Valley were rarely resisted by the Cherokee, but the lawless nature of the new settlements led to conflicts between bands of outlaws and settlers attempting to build new communities. One notorious band, called the “Pony Club,” terrorized white and Indian farmers alike. It was not until a group of settlers, called the “Slick Club,” challenged the Pony Club that a sense of law
Founding of Cedartown Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, May 5, 2022
2. Founding of Cedartown Marker
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and order was obtained. As Cedar Town grew, pressure to remove the Cherokee from the State of Georgia mounted, and in 1838 Federal troops oversaw the forced migration of the Cherokee to new lands in what is now Oklahoma, known as the Trail of Tears.

Residents began to lobby for the creation of a new county to serve the Cedar Town area. In 1851, Polk County (named for President James K. Polk) was formed and its county seat assigned to Cedar Town. With Cedar Town now requiring a new courthouse, Asa Prior, a planter with a substantial landholding near the original trading posts and Cherokee village, dedicated a tract of land in 1852 for establishing a courthouse and laying out of town plots. Cedar Town was incorporated February 8, 1854.

(Left) One of the earliest known photographs of downtown Cedartown, circa 1870, looking north along the Rome road.
(Right, top) The Cherokee known as Chief Collard, photographed here with his two sons, lived in what is now called Collard Valley, northeast of Cedartown, before his forced removal on the Trail of Tears. He returned after the Civil War and presented this photograph to the Whatley family, who had settled near Chief Collard in the early 1830's.
(Right, bottom) An engraving of the Big Spring, 1854
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of Polk County Historical Society

Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Law EnforcementNative AmericansSettlements & Settlers. A significant historical date for this entry is February 8, 1854.
Location. 34° 0.772′ N, 85° 15.297′ W. Marker is in Cedartown, Georgia, in Polk County. Marker is at the intersection of South Main Street (Business U.S. 27) and Grace Street, on the right when traveling south on South Main Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 210 S Main St, Cedartown GA 30125, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Cedartown's City Plan (here, next to this marker); Parker and Lundy (a few steps from this marker); Public Works and Buildings of Cedartown (within shouting distance of this marker); Polk County Courthouses (within shouting distance of this marker); Polk County (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Polk County Confederate Monument (about 300 feet away); Images of Yesteryear (about 300 feet away); Everyone Loves a Parade (about 400 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Cedartown.
Credits. This page was last revised on May 9, 2022. It was originally submitted on May 9, 2022, by Duane and Tracy Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. This page has been viewed 205 times since then and 80 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on May 9, 2022, by Duane and Tracy Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

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Mar. 29, 2023