Protected by the MilitiaAs colonists moved across the American map, it was local Militia companies which saved the day. All homesteaders, aged 21 and above, were required to become part of a militia which protected the community from Indian attacks, and later, from the British (and their Indian warriors). A small fort was erected which consisted of a stockade fence, ramparts, and an armory. Everyone bore arms for the purpose of protecting the families against wild animals and Indian attacks. They hunted and fished to survive. During the early days of our country, the Militia was supported by local residents. Should you discover an ancestor did fight in a war, yet was called "captain" or "colonel", their participation in the Militia was the source of that rank. It is a good idea to research county militia records to learn more, usually kept at the State Archives. When Local Militia Protected Communities Clues into Military Names and Ranks: Clinch Militia of 1861 Protected by the Militia The Militia Won the Backwoods During the Revolutionary War They Fought Guerrilla Warfare Battle of Bloody Marsh Capt. Andrew Danielly
The Battle of Leather's FordThere was a number of gold mining camps in North Georgia which attracted miners, and trouble. In 1830 (before Dawson was a county) the Georgia Legislature passed a Law which sent the local Militia to guard Georgia gold mines. The guards arrested eleven men caught intruding in the mining camp along the Chestatee River. The Chestatee River originates in Lumpkin County at the confluence of Dicks Creek and Frogtown Creek near the junction of US Highways 19 and 129. However, north of Dahlonega the river level drops rapidly creating shoals and small falls. The Chestatee was a popular river for panning gold, especially in the northern portion of the county the river water has cool temperatures. The name Chestatee is derived from a Cherokee Indian word meaning "fire light place" referring to the "fire-hunting" method of hunting deer at night. Further down the river, however, the guards were ambushed by about sixty locals, using all manner of weapons (except no guns). The guards charged the dissidents and succeeded in dispersing them. 183 Years Later, Cherokees Return to their Silver Mines in Georgia A Silver Mine in Tazewell, Georgia
Discovering Lost RecordsThe county clerks kept records of every transaction in the county. That is why researching county records is so important to finding the ancestors, or learning more about them. In this modern age, one does not always find old records at the court house. That is because they have been moved to a storage location. I have found that the employees are not necessarily aware of the existence of old wills, estates, marriages and deeds, much less storage. Luckily, we have microfilmed records, more and more of which are going online. Did you notice that certain counties burned down and the records were lost? Unfortunately, this common experience affects all genealogists. However, I have discovered old court house ledgers in antique shops! How did they get there? Why, they were found in an attic somewhere. It was sometimes common practice for the clerk to take his ledgers home to finish his work. How will we ever get to see these ledgers? The answer for now is the internet. This is the place where unexpected information is posted. Otherwise, while out on a field trip, it is a good idea to question neighbors and keep an eye out for a good find!
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Dawson County Wills and Estates
Dawson County was created in 1857 from Lumpkin County. Later a portion was taken from Gilmer County. County seat is Dawsonville. (In 1850, Calhoun was called Dawsonville before it was renamed.) The County was named for Judge William C. Dawson. Researchers should also search Lumpkin County.
Dawson County Records Available to Members of Georgia Pioneers
- Index to Dawson County Marriages 1858 to 1883
- Dawson County Wills 1857-1862 (abstracts).
Indexes to Dawson County Probate Records
- Index to Dawson County Annual Returns, Books D & E, 1835-1854.
- Index to Dawson County Wills, Guardians, Administrators, Bonds, Book B, 1857-1896.
- Minutes of New Hope Baptist Church 1843 to 1860
See how easy it is to view Wills, Estates, Inventories, Returns, Sales online