From White's Historical Collections of Georgia, 1854

"Twiggs County

Laid out from Wilkinson in 1809, and part added to Bibb in 1833. Length, 25 m.; breadth, 14 m.; area square miles, 350. Named after General John Twiggs, of Revolutionary memory.
The upper part of the county is broken. On Turkey Creek and Ocmulgee River the lands are fertile. The Ocmulgee River forms most of the western boundary.

Marion is the county town, 36 miles S.W. of Milledgeville. Tarversville is in the S.W. corner of the county. Jeffersonville is six miles from Marion. Burrstone of good quality is found in Twiggs.

According to the census of 1850, there were 696 dwellings, 696 families, 1,795 white males, 1,722 white females; 20 free coloured males; 22 free coloured females. Total free population, 3,559; slaves, 4,620. Deaths, 107. Farms, 367. Value of real estate, $1,001,142. Value of personal estate, $3,121,795.

Among the first settlers were, Arthur Fort, E. Wimberly, Wm. Perry, Henry Wall, Wm. Crocker, Gen. Tarver, Ira Peck, John Fulton, John Everitt, D. Williams, Joel Denson, S. Jones, Willis Hodgins, Milton Wilder, Josiah Murphy, Davis Lowery, C. Johnson, C. A. Thorpe, John Davis, C.W. Melton, B. Ray, S. Harrell, T. Harrington, H. Sullivan.

Among the instances of longevity which have come to our notice are the following:-MRS. NANCY CHAPPELL, aged 81 years; JOHN KEITH died at 90; Mr. JOHN DENSON at 90; MAJOR JAMES GORDON at 91. He was in Braddock's defeat, and bore the name of King Corn Stalk. He died in  a state of delirium, abuse the enemy.
    JOHN SHINE died in 1832. He was born in North Carolina, 1759, and devoted a part of his youth to the service of his country in the Revolutionary War, under the command of General Caswell, and was a the battle near Camden, SC.., in 1780. His recollection of the events of that day was perfect almost to the last hour; the portly figure and animated countenance of Baron De Kalb, and the bleached lots and early flight of General Gates on that occasion, were vividly retained in his mind.
     HENRY SAPP, a Revolutionary hero, died in this county on the 29th of October, 1839, aged 83; and on the same day, REMISON SAPP, his wife, at 93. This venerable pair were married several years previous to the Revolution, and lived in the happy fruition of domestic life for the period of sixty-five years. The remarkable coincidence of their dissolution within a few hours of each other, seemed to be in accordance with their mutual desire, expressed a short time before death. As a soldier and a patriot, during the arduous struggle of the Revolution, and as a citizen during the long period which has since elapsed, Mr. Sapp was emphatically an honest man, "the noblest work of God."
      Mr. ARTHUR FORT died in this county, in the 85th year of his age. He had been a resident and  a citizen of Georgia for 75 years; a soldier and a statesman of the Revolution, a member of the Committee of Safety in the darkest hour of that struggle, when the whole powers of government rested in the hands of only three men; and afterwards, for many years, he was retained in honourable stations by the people. A fervid, patriotic zeal, characterized his life to its latest hour. For nearly fifty years, he led the life of a Christian, and his death was truly the Christian's death.
     Colonel JOHN LAWSON, died in April, 1816, after an illness of two days. He had literally grown gray in the service of his country. It is well known that during the Revolutionary struggle, he took and active part in behalf of freedom. He lived many years afterward, to enjoy the blessings of his hard toils.

The first Superior Court of this county was held in November, 1811, at Marion. Presiding Judge, the Hon. PETER EARLY.
Francis Powell
N. Bugby
A. Wood
Wm. Ford
John Welkinson (Wilkinson)
Thos. C. Heidleburge
B. Joiner
S. Barbaree
Wm. Herrishill
T. Pearce
Wm. Carr
Wm. Grimes
Robins Andrews
Wm. Cloud
John Matthews
John Young
Arthur Fort, Jr.
John Hawthorn
Ashley Wood
S. Dick
John Evans"

   From: Georgia's landmarks, memorials and legends  Lucian Lamar Knight, 1913

"The Lafayette Volunteers

Says Major Stephen F. Miller: "In March, 1825, while General Lafayette was a visitor to the United States, a company was formed called the Lafayette Volunteers, of which John G. Slappey was elected captain, T. M. Chamberlain, first-lieutenant, Hamilton R. Dupree, second-lieutenant, Francis W. Jobson, third-lieutenant, and the author was appointed orderly-sergeant. The corps adopted a cheap uniform, and, with drum and fife, under a beautifully painted silk flag, presented by the ladies, it took up the line of march for Milledgeville, having as a much-venerated charge three Revolutionary soldiers, Fathers William Duffel, John Shine, and Charles Raley, in a conveyance provided for the occasion. When the troops reached Marion from Tarversville, they halted an hour or two, during which time the orderly-sergeant availed himself of the courtesy of a friend to obtain a sword, to render him more worthy of respect to his official character. It belonged to Major William Crocker. The Lafayette Volunteers had reached a hill near Fishing Creek, within site of Milledgevile, when the roar of cannon announced the arrival of General Layfayette. An express was sent to tender our command to the marshal in the ceremonies of reception. The reply came that the great review was to occur on the nex day, at 10 o'clock.

Marion: A Lost Town

Only a weather-beaten little negro shack, in the last stages of decay, survives today at the old cross-roads, where formerly stood one of the most important inland towns of the State, a great rendezvous during court week for lawyers of the most eminent distinction and a thrifty center of trade in the early ante-bellum period; the once wide-awake little town of Marion.   It west located at a point equidistant between Jeffersonville and Bullard-six miles from each. The population of the village exceeded 1,000 at a time when there were few towns of the size in the State. It possessed a bank, a post-office, a schoolhouse, and several good hotels, with ample accommodations. The original survey of the Central Railroad was made to Marion; but the iron horse was an untried experiment in those days. The people of the little rural community objected to the intruder on the ground that it might endanger live-stock and demoralize the poultry yard. So the line was built to Macon, a town which became in time the metropolis of middle Georgia. Some of the most aristocratic old families of the State lived at Marion, including the Forts, the Fannins, the Wimberleys, the Griffins, the Tarvers, the Tharps and many others of equal prominence; but when the county-seat was changed  to Jeffersonville after the war and the conditions of life were sadly different, they began to scatter. Other localities were more attractive to them; and soon there was left of the little town of Marion naught but a waste of abandoned homes and a wealth of fragrant memories.

Distinguished Residents of Twiggs County

   Somewhat lengthy is the honor-roll of distinguished men who have lived in Twiggs. The celebrated Colonel James W. Fannin, a martyr to the cause of Texan independence, who perished at Goliad, in 1836, spent his boyhood days on a plantation near Marion. He was a natural son of Dr. Isham Fannin, a wealthy planter, who gave him parental adoption
on. (Authority: Letter to the author, from a relative of Col. Fannin. The name of the writer is withheld for obvious reasons, but the statement therein contained is an absolute fact.) At the age of fifteen, he was sent to West Point, but on the eve of graduation he was drawn into a duel over some insult to the South and, leaving he institution clandestinely, he returned home. He afterwards married in Georgia; but the restless spirit of adventure impelled him westward and he removed to Texas, where the outbreak of the Revolution found him among the very first to enlist.
  Thaddeus Oliver, a lawyer by profession and a poet by divine gift, was a resident of Twiggs. In the opinion of some of the foremost literary critics, he was the real author of the famous war poem whose origin has long been a fruitful source of contention  - "All's Quiet Along the Potomac Tonight."
     Gen. Hartwell H. Tarver, a wealthy planter, who married the widow Colquitt and became step-father to the great jurist, was a resident of Twiggs. The list includes also Major Robert Augustus Beall and Judge Thaddeus G. Holt, who formed a partnership at Marion for the practice of law; Gen. Ezekial Wimberly, a planter, who became head of the State militia; and Gen. L. L. Griffin, for whom the town of Griffin was named, later a resident of Monroe County and the first president of the old Monroe Road.
   Robert L. Perryman, a talented lawyer, who wrote a biography of General Andrew Jackson, practiced his profession at Marion; but unhappily his free use of the pen led to a quarrel in which he was fatally stabbed in the abdomen. Robert A. Everett was a gifted but erratic genius of the same local bar, equally ready for the sake of argument to uphold religion or to defend atheism. Here lived the noted Stephen F. Miller, whose "Bench and Bar of Georgia" is a most important work of history of on the ante-bellum period; and here lived the once famous William Crocker, who, according to Major Miller, was on one side or the other of more than four hundred cases tried in the Superior Court of Twiggs.
     Other distinguished Georgians born in the county were: Governor James M. Smith, afterwards a resident of Columbus; Judge A. T. MacIntyre, who became a resident of Thomasville, a lawyer of note and a member of Congress; Dr. James E. Dickey, president of Emory College; Gen. Phillip Cook, Secretary of State, Congressman,  and veteran of the Civil War; besides a number of others. Hon. Dudley M. Hughes, a member of the present Georgia delegation in Congress, is  a resident of Danville, in the neighborhood of which he owns and extensive plantation."

 Eileen Babb McAdams Copyright 2004