So much can be said about the city of Dawsonville on its 150th birthday, but perhaps Mayor Joe Lane Cox summed it up best:
“Here in the city,” Cox said, “we look after one another pretty good.”
Inside today’s newspaper, the words of natives and longtime residents fill a special section celebrating aspects of Dawsonville that set it apart from other cities.
The City of Dawsonville 150th section offers a look at the city’s heritage and culture, from religion and education to business and government.
Highlights include an interview with NASCAR legend Bill Elliott, who brags on “Bully Burgers” at the Dawsonville Pool Room.
Longtime educator Herbert Robinson, 93, reminisces on the roots of the schools that have shaped local education.
Dawson County Coroner Ted Bearden discusses the quirks of the funeral business. According to Bearden, before the 1970s, many funeral services were conducted in the home of the deceased.
Readers may learn something new about the Fouts Property on East 1st Street and Hwy. 9, as well as Dawsonville Hardware and Feed and Poultry Co.
Religious history is explored as a local pastor discovers dusty volumes dating back to 1875, less than two decades after the city’s incorporation, in Dawsonville Methodist Church.
On Dec. 10, 1859, Dawsonville was incorporated as the county seat. The city was named for William C. Dawson, a compiler of Georgia laws and commander of a brigade in the 1836 Creek Indian War.
The look of the city has changed a bit since then. Cox said early residents “would hardly recognize it” these days.
“It would blow their minds,” he said.
Among the first structures in Dawsonville were a log courthouse and wooden jail.
Around the same time, Dawsonville Baptist Church was built, one of the oldest landmarks in the city.
Now known as First Baptist Church of Dawsonville, Robinson has been a loyal member of the congregation for more than 70 years. He continues to teach Sunday school classes every week.
A native and longtime resident, he said Dawsonville folks are unique.
“I don’t think there’s any doubt that they are a distinctive people, and there’s nobody like them,” he said.
Don’t miss the special section inside today’s print edition of the Dawson Community News.