Cherokee County, in northwest Georgia, was formed from Cherokee Indian Territory in December 1831, after the discovery of gold in the region in 1828. In December 1832 the area was divided into ten counties—Cass (Bartow), Cherokee, Cobb, Floyd, Forsyth, Gilmer, Lumpkin, Murray, Paulding, and Union—and in 1853 Pickens County was formed from the northern part of Cherokee and the southern part of Gilmer counties. The Cherokee Indians were gathered into such settlements as Fort Buffington, east of Canton, before being driven out on the Trail of Tears for present-day Oklahoma in 1838-39. The removal of the Cherokees opened up the new territory for agricultural uses, especially the cultivation of cotton and corn, the mining of gold and marble, the making of moonshine, the manufacture of cotton and rope, and the construction of both a railroad in 1879 and a highway for shipping goods.
According to the 2010 U.S. census, the population of Cherokee County is 214,346, a significant increase over the 2000 population of 141,903. The community has grown rapidly, partly because of its proximity to Atlanta and the interstate highway corridor.
Lloyd G. Marlin, The History of Cherokee County (Atlanta: Walter W. Brown, 1932; reprint, Fernandina Beach, Fla.: Wolfe, 1997).
Phyllis Porter, ed., The Heritage of Cherokee County, Georgia, 1831-1998 (Waynesville, N.C.: Don Mills, 1998).
Felicia S. Whitmore, Georgia's Woodstock: A Centennial Tribute, 1897-1997 (Fernandina Beach, Fla.: Wolfe, 1997).
Mary Ellen Johnson, Pickens Public Library
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