A Chronology of
Americus and Sumter County, Georgia
1540 - 1914

Alan Anderson, compiler

Mar.  1540  according to legend, Spanish explorer Hernando DeSoto
            camped on the site of the the Sumter County town that
            bears his name
1820's      Chief Philema, or Fillimmee, ruled over three Creek 
            towns on Muckalee and Philema Creeks in south central 
            Sumter County
Feb.  1825  Treaty of Indian Springs opened land between Flint 
            and Chattahoochee Rivers for settlement
early 1828  Avery Wheeler, Jacob W. Cobb, Thomas Key, Isom West, 
            John Kimmey, Edmund Nunn and two slaves, Richmond and 
            Judy, his wife, came across Flint River at Shelby's 
            Ferry to be pioneers of originally Lee, now Sumter, 
May   1829  Benton Moore Wheeler, son of Avery Wheeler, first 
            child born in the county
Dec.  1831  Sumter County created, named for Thomas Sumter, the 
            "Gamecock" of South Carolina, last surviving Revolu-
            tionary War general
      1832  Americus Baptist Church constituted by Sampson English
            and James S. Lunsford, presbyters 
July  1832  Walter L. Campbell, of Houston County, sold Lot 156 
            in 27th District, for $300, to Sumter County Commis-
            sioners Hiram D. Youngblood, Lovett B. Smith, Samuel 
            Faust, Martin G. Mims and Joseph Jackson; Americus 
            town square laid off by Green M. Wheeler and Wright 
            Brady, latter building the first house (southwest 
            corner Lamar and Lee); Lovett B. Smith named town 
            after Americus Vespucius, Italian navigator, preempt-
            ing drawing of name from a hat by Jos. A. "Nap" Cobb 
Dec.  1832  Americus incorporated Dec. 22nd and established as 
            "permanent seat of Justice" for Sumter County; Sumter 
            County Academy incorporated, John J. Britt, Thomas G. 
            Cowart, John Kimmey, Jacob W. Cobb, William Tinsley, 
      1833  Mr. Horton established Pineville between Line Creek 
            and Hwy. 27, several miles west of Flint River, site 
            of the county's first school, taught by Jacob W. Cobb
Oct.  1833  Bethel, Bethesda, Providence, Shiloh and Spring Creek 
            Baptist Churches, of Sumter County, applied for dis-
            mission from Columbus Association 
Jan.  1834  announcement of incorporation by state legislature of
            Sumter Academy at Americus, William Pegg, Mark M. 
            Brown, John T. McCrary, Jesse Harris, Thomas Gardner, 
July  1834  Americus Baptist Church granted 4 acres, northeast 
            corner Troup (now Lee) and Wild; "common burying 
            ground for the citizens of Americus" established on 3 
            acres, Lot 1, Square P, where "the present Baptist 
            meeting house now stands" (north side Ashby at East-
            view Cemetery); Methodist Protestant Church society 
            given 4 acres, northeast corner Lot 2, Square R; John 
            R. Moore absconded with $950 for new Courthouse, hav-
            ing built nothing  
Aug.  1834  Robert Emmett Cobb, son of first Superior Court Clerk 
            Jacob W. Cobb, was first male child born in Americus; 
            Martin Miller and Royal Jenkins advertised Danville, 
            Americus' chief rival for twenty years, on a bluff 
            overlooking the Flint River, north of Hwy. 27, on Lot 
            12, 28th District (the town possessed a Masonic hall, 
            church, warehouse, carriage shop, blacksmith, four 
            stores and a bakery, the latter owned by John Hardy 
            Newsome and his wife Clarissa, "both free colored, 
            but of considerable means") 
      1835  Methodist Episcopal Church organized in Americus, Rev.
            Edwards, preacher in charge, Wm. Pegg, L.P.
      1836  Salem Methodist Church organized in New Era community
Mar.  1836  Mount Tabor Presbyterian Church had been organized, 
            building razed 1982, (northwest corner Ga. 30 and Ga. 
June  1836  "Sumter Cavalry," Howard's Bttn., Ga. Mounted Militia,
            Capt. Isaac McCrary, 1st Lt. George W. Robinson, 2nd
            Lt. John Kimmey, commanding, fought in the Battle of 
            Boykin's Plantation against hostile Lower Creeks
Nov.  1836  Sumter Inferior Court rewarranted 4 acres, Lot 2, 
            Square R, to trustees of Methodist Episcopal Church, 
            "for a place of public worship" 
Apr.  1838  massive fire destroyed block bounded by Forsyth, La-
            mar, Prince and Troup (now Lee)
Apr.  1839  second Baptist Church erected on west side of Cotton 
            Ave., where Forsyth now crosses it (burned May 1857)
Aug.  1839  U.S. Post Office established at Plains of Dura, David
            W. Robinette, postmaster
Nov.  1839  Sumter Inferior Court received new courthouse, two-
            story wood frame, Jacob W. Cobb, contractor 
Dec.  1839  Sheriff John Kimmey murdered under Franklin Hotel, 
            northwest corner Forsyth and Lee, by James Shearn 
            and Wm. Sims, result of a political feud with George 
            W. Robinson
Jan.  1840  Friendship Baptist Church constituted by presbytery 
            of John Rushin, James S. Lunsford and James Matthews 
            (north side Hwy. 30 east of Ga. 153)
Dec.  1840  Americus Camp Ground incorporated, William L. McRee, 
            William P. Hames, John W. Tommey, Quincy Bass, Willi-
            am Pegg, Joseph M. Wyatt, trustees
May   1842  angry Sumter County farmers burned courthouse records,
            then kidnapped Deputy Sheriff Isaac McCrary to suc-
            cessfully prevent public sale of their property
June  1842  Americus Presbyterian Church organized, George M. 
            Dudley, William J. Patterson, Henry K. McCay, elders
Aug.  1843  Mount Olive Baptist Church (now Andersonville Bap-
            tist) organized, Rev. Phillip Belcher, pastor, incor-
            porated Aug. 18,1851 (Lot 242, 29th Dist.) 
Dec.  1843  Line Creek Academy incorporated, Josiah Scrutchins, 
            James Hay, John B. Hodges, Mitchell A. Morgan, James 
            K. Daniel, trustees
      1843  Geo. M. Dudley, Adam A. Robinson, E.S. Young began
            Americus' first Union Sabbath School 
Nov.  1844  political riot between "sturdy Whigs and fiery Demo-
            crats" under large red oak between courthouse and 
            Lamar, where "majority of the combatants left the 
            gory field with cuts and bruises...now and then a ve-
            teran minus an ear, an eye or a section of nose," 
            factions led by Jacob L. Curry and Redwood Spears
      1845  construction of first sanctuary for Americus Metho-
            dist Church, Rev. Richard Menafee, pastor (northeast 
            corner Church and Prince), with Rev. Thos. Samford 
            preaching dedication sermon
Mar.  1845  Americus Methodist Circuit:  Americus, Rocky Mount, 
            Shiloh, Salem, Bethesda, Bethel, Andrew Chapel, Con-
            cord, Danville and Tabernacle Churches 
Oct.  1845  Rehoboth Baptist Church organized (now west side Ga. 
            49 south of Ga. 280, originally Lot 15, 16th Dist.)
June  1846  "Sumter Volunteers," 1st Regiment, Ga. Volunteers, 
            enrolled at Americus for Mexican-American War, Capt. 
            Joseph A.S. Turner, commanding
July  1846  Liberty Primitive Baptist Church constituted by Alli-
            son Culpepper and Daniel C. Davis, presbytery, east 
            side of Chokeelagee Creek in southwest Sumter County 
            (moved to Sumter City, 1858) 
Sept. 1846  Methodist Church Tabernacle and Camp Ground located 
            on 5 acres (south side Youngs Mill Rd. between Ga. 
            45 and Magnolia Springs Rd.) 
May   1847  first ice came to Americus, at Andrew G. Ronaldson's 
            saloon on north side of courthouse square
July  1847  Georgia Supreme Court met in Americus, Justices Jos. 
            Henry Lumpkin, Hiram Warner and Eugenius A. Nisbet
Oct.  1847  M.E. Church Sabbath School in Americus organized, 
            Jos. J. Granberry, superintendent, Rev. R.E. Oslin,
Dec.  1848  Lebanon Baptist Church constituted by presbyters 
            Francis F. Seig and John U. Fletcher at Plains of 
May   1849  Americus Lodge #13, F. & A.M., incorporated, Robert 
            M. Pickett, Worshipful Master, Edwin R. Brown, Esq., 
            Senior Warden, Adam A. Robinson, Esq., Junior Warden 
            (incorporated by General Assembly, Dec. 1859, Louis 
            Bruner, Worshipful Master, John E. Sullivan, Senior 
            Warden, David R.E. Winn, Junior Warden)
Feb.  1851  Americus Female Academy trustees Wright Brady, Albert 
            Rees, Robert T. McCay, Hawkins H. Nunn and Jared Tom-
            linson applied to Inferior Court for incorporation
Jan.  1852  Rev. Phillip A. Strobel incorporated Americus Female 
            Institute, (northwest corner Barlow and Taylor, lat-
            ter then Lewis Ferry Road)
June  1852  Augustus B. Raiford sold Pleasant Grove Methodist 
            Church its 2 acre lot, "with the meeting house there-
            upon" (northeast corner Chambliss Mill Rd. and Ga. 
May   1853  first brick Sumter County courthouse completed in 
            center of town square, replaced original wooden 
            structure moved to west side of Jackson St., Patrick 
            Adams, contractor
Feb.  1854  Charles W. Hancock started our first newspaper, "The 
            Sumter Republican"
June  1854  "The Southwestern News" became Americus' second news-
            paper, at first edited by Messrs. J.T. and J.L.D. 
            Register, and subsequently by Wm. B. Guerry, then 
            Rev. Adam A. Robinson
July  1854  Georgia Supreme Court met in Americus - Justices 
            Joseph Henry Lumpkin, Henry L. Benning and Ebenezer 
            A. Starnes 
Aug.  1854  "Sumter Guards," local militia unit, organized by 
            Timothy M. Furlow, Wright Brady, Charles J. Malone 
            and Newnan McBain
Oct.  1854  Southwestern Railroad (now Central of Ga.) arrived,  
            ensuring the survival of Americus and spelling de-
            mise of Danville; Americus Educational Company set 
            up male and female academies; first town council:  
            Henry K. McCay, Wade J. Barlow, N. McBain, William M. 
            Brady and M.L. Gardiner
Feb.  1855  Commissioners of Town of Americus:  Charles J. Ma-
            lone, Walter T. Davenport, Green M. Wheeler, Little-
            ton P. Dorman, Sr. and James S. Fish; John Coker do-
            nated 2 acres to New Hope Universalist Church trus-
            tees Micajah B. Pickett and George R. Harper, "ex-
            cept the graveyard" (Lot 79, 26th Dist.); Rev. George
            White, author of "White's Statistics" and "Georgia
            Historical Collections," lectured at courthouse and
            Rev. Strobel's Female Academy 
Mar.  1855  Americus Presbyterian Church had its new sanctuary 
            dedicated (east side of water tank on north side E. 
Aug.  1855  Bethel Baptist Church of Americus, now First Baptist, 
            dedicated its new sanctuary, Rev. H.C. Hornady, pas-
            tor (southwest corner Church and Forrest) 
Mar.  1856  City of Americus incorporated:  Mayor Perry H. Oli-
            ver, Aldermen Wade J. Barlow, William T. Toole, James 
            G. McCrary, Alfred F. McPherson, James S. Fish and 
            John E. Sullivan, and Clerk, Green M. Wheeler 
Apr.  1856  Americus Methodist Church dedicated its new sanctuary 
            (slightly east of southeast corner Church and Lee) 
June  1856  Sumter City established
Apr.  1857  Oak Grove Cemetery opened, William M. "Buck" Brady, 
            Jr., first burial
July  1857  shootout at corner of Jackson and Lamar, between Mr. 
            and Mrs. Harvey W. Shaw, with his brother Bill, on 
            one side, against Charles W. Hancock, Newnan McBain 
            and Tom Durham (H.W. Shaw was killed, McBain was 
            shot in his face, Durham later committed suicide 
            over killing Shaw)
Dec.  1857  Schley County created out of northern Sumter County 
            and eastern Marion County
Apr.  1858  Rt. Rev. Stephen Elliott organized St. John's Parish 
            in Americus, with nine communicants in home of 
            Ambrose Spencer (just west of southwest corner Barlow 
            and Taylor), with name changed to Calvary by Bishop
            Elliott Aug. 1864 and parish established May 1865 
June  1858  Mt. Zion Methodist Church organized, Rev. Philip J. 
            Dell, pastor (east side County Line Church Rd. south 
            of Ga. 118) 
May   1859  Scott's Mater Tabernacle C.M.E., city's first black 
            church, organized when Thomas C. Sullivan donated 
            1/2 acre (northwest corner Anchrom and Hampton) to 
            M.E., South trustees, on behalf of their slaves, 
            built by and named for Rev. Wm. J. Scott of Americus 
            Methodist Church  
June  1859  Furlow Masonic Female College, Rev. Creed Fulton, 
            president, established by Americus Lodge #13, F. & 
            A.M., with $1,000 contributions from Timothy M. Fur-
            low, Allen S. Cutts and Willis A. Hawkins (site of 
            Furlow Grammar at College and Jackson), Misses Sara
            Pickett and Mattie Scott, first graduates
Fall  1859  Pleasant Grove Baptist Church organized, George Har-
            ris, James Holman and Julius Hogue, deacons (south-
            west corner Ga. 30 and Huntington Rd.)
June  1860  Perry H. Oliver, former Americus mayor, during 
            three-year national tour, exhibited "Blind Tom,"
            slave from near Columbus and musical prodigy, at
            Willard Hall in Washington, D.C. in honor of first
            visiting Japanese delegation to United States
Jan.  1861  Henry Davenport, Jr., Timothy M. Furlow and Willis
            A. Hawkins, Sumter's delegates to Secession Conven-
            tion in Milledgeville, voted for severing Georgia's
            union with United States of America
Apr.  1861  "Sumter Light Guards," Co. K, 4th Ga. Inf. Regt., 
            formed as first Confederate military unit, Capt. 
            William L. Johnson, commanding
June  1861  "Americus Volunteer Rifles," Co. K, 9th Ga. Inf., 
            Capt. James M.D. King, and "Muckalee Guards," Co. A, 
            12th Ga. Inf., Capt. Willis A. Hawkins, commanding; 
            A.B. Seals bought "The Southwestern News," changed 
            its name to "The Americus Weekly Post," but ceased 
            publication following year
July  1861  "Sumter Flying Artillery," Co. A, 11th Bttn., Ga. 
            Arty., Capt. Allen S. Cutts, commanding
Mar.  1862  "Zollicoffer Rifles," Co. C, 10th Bttn., Ga. Inf.,
            Capt. B.F. Bell, commanding
Apr.  1864  Bethlehem Baptist Church established in 17th Dist. 
            (west side Thomas Mill Rd. at Pessell Creek)
Jan.  1864  Governor Joseph E. Brown gave a speech in Americus
Feb.  1864  first Federal prisoners arrived at Camp Sumter, An-
            derson Station, Lt. Col. Alex. W. Persons, command-
Aug.  1864  biggest fire in history of Americus destroyed west 
            side Cotton, from Forsyth to Lamar, north side Lamar, 
            from Cotton to Jackson, west side Jackson, from Lamar 
            to Forsyth, and south east half Forsyth, from Jackson, 
            severely disrupting Confederate hospitals located in 
            almost every building uptown
Oct.  1864  CSA Gen. Howell Cobb, former governor and congress-
            man, bought, and moved his family into, the Willis A.
            Hawkins mansion (northeast corner College and Lee),
            prompting its choice as U.S. Army HQ during the Re-
            construction Era
Feb.  1865  City Marshal Stephen H. Mitchell and freight agent
            S. Rogers in shootout at depot, but no one injured
July  1865  Andersonville Prison site designated a National Ceme-
            tery; Clara Barton, founder of American Red Cross, 
            personally coordinated identification of Anderson-
            ville dead
Aug.  1865  Col. H.F. Sickles, 147th Regt., Illinois Volunteers,
            commander of the Fourth Military Dist. of Ga., set up
            headquarters in Americus, choosing former Gen. Howell 
            Cobb mansion (northeast corner College and Lee)
Oct.  1865  Pvt. Prat Martin, Co. G, 147th Illinois Regt., white, 
            married Emma Poe, former slave of J.H. Black's, by 
            Rev. G.T. Wilburn of Americus Baptist Church (Martin 
            was tarred and feathered and run out of town by his 
            fellow soldiers); Col. Thomas C. Sullivan, former 
            Americus mayor, courtmartialed and convicted by U.S. 
            Army for shooting with buckshot soldiers depredating 
            his vineyard on S. Dudley (local citizens paid the 
Aug.  1866  Rev. Geo. F. Cooper organized first black Baptist 
            Church in Americus, Bethesda
Sept. 1867  Bethel Baptist Church, 28th District, deeded land on 
            which to construct their sanctuary (near southeast 
            corner Line Store Rd. and Upper River Rd.)
Dec.  1867  Wide-Awake Fire Company #1 organized, Americus' first
            volunteer firemen
June  1868  Old Shady Grove Baptist Church organized near New Era
Aug.  1868  Mrs. Mary B. Brown deeded Bethesda Baptist Church its 
            lot on Forrest (west side Forrest between Church and 
Dec.  1868  CSA Gen. Joseph E. Johnston visited Americus
June  1869  Georgia's most famous poet, Sidney Lanier, gave com-
            mencement speech at Furlow Masonic Female College
July  1869  Calvary Episcopal Church cornerstone ceremony by Rt. 
            Rev. John W. Beckwith (east side Lee between Brannon 
            and College), with first service held by Rev. H.K. 
            Reese, of Macon, Jan. 1871
Oct.  1869  Americus' first city directory published by W.C.P.
            Cleghorn and Isom Cain
May   1870  St. Mark's Lutheran Church organized in Bottsford, 
            with sanctuary built 1872, Rev. J.P. Margart, pastor 
            (Lot 10, 17th Dist.); Raphael Lodge #145, B'nai 
            B'rith, organized in Americus, M. Barwald, president, 
            M. Lazaron, vice-president, D. Barwald, monitor, N. 
            Emanuel, secretary, M.W. Holtz, financial secretary, 
            S. Cohen, Sr., treasurer; "The Courier" published in
            Americus by W.L. Perry, proprietor 
Sept. 1870  Bank of Americus, the city's first, incorporated by 
            Francis M. Coker, president, Moses Speer, cashier, 
            and directors William W. Barlow, Samuel H. Hawkins, 
            William Hooks and Walter T. Davenport
Oct.  1870  Cut-Off community (north of Sweetwater Creek and east
            of Andersonville) earned its sobriquet when it re-
            moved itself into Macon County by act of legislature  
Dec.  1870  Laura Keene opened in "Our American Cousin" in Ameri-
            cus city hall (northeast corner Cotton and Lamar), 
            role she played in Ford's Theater when Pres. Lincoln
            was assassinated
Feb.  1871  Sumter County School Board organized, William A. Wil-
            son, D.G. Patterson, William T. Toole, Timothy M. 
            Furlow, David Bagley, George W. Huckabay, Samuel T.
            Feagin, William M. Threlkeld, John F. Bolton, Henry 
            Davenport, members
May   1871  Lebanon Colored Baptist Church organized in Plains 
            of Dura
Nov.  1871  Renwick, on the Lee-Sumter line, changed its name to 
            Smithville; Mrs. Cassandra Pickett Windsor Durham, of 
            Plains of Dura, Reformed Medical College, of Macon, 
            graduate, became Georgia's first woman licensed as a 
Dec.  1871  Sumter County Board of Commissioners of Roads and Re-
            venues created, now county commission, James H. Black,
            Samuel Heys, James W. Furlow, Amos K. Schumpert, Seth
            K. Taylor
Jan.  1872  Town of Leeton incorporated, John V. Price, Robert T. 
            Byrd, Robert R. Brown, Dr. William N.L. Crocker, 
            Frank E. Burke, councilmen (S. Lee, from Dodson to 
            Elm intersection, east to Elm), with reincorporation
            into Americus Apr. 1885
May   1872  Sumter County public school system organized, Geo. W. 
            Patterson, president and William A. Wilson, secreta-
            ry; Samuel Heys, William J. Bosworth and Richard T. 
            Walters all claimed sheriff's office simultaneously 
            (Heys, interim incumbent, won out) 
Feb.  1873  Americus public school system authored by 24-year-old 
            State Representative Allen Fort, with Dr. Geo. F. 
            Cooper, president, Board of Education
Oct.  1873  fire destroyed Felder's Warehouse (southeast corner 
            Forrest and Lamar) block east almost to Granberry's 
            Corner (southwest corner Jackson and Lamar)
Nov.  1873  Hon. Robert Toombs, "The Unreconstructed Rebel," gave 
            a speech at Sumter County courthouse
Oct.  1874  "City Blues," first local black militia organized, 
            Capt. E.W. Ansley, commanding ("Americus Guards," 
            Capt. D.S. Harris, commanding, organized second)
Nov.  1874  Primus Edwards, black, executed in jail yard (south-
            west corner Forsyth and Prince) for self-defense mur-
            der of Berry Adams
Feb.  1875  City Council named streets and arranged sign boards
Apr.  1875  formal opening of Americus-built $25,000 bridge 
            across Flint River connecting Dooly and Sumter
June  1875  Hon. Alexander H. Stephens, former CSA vice-president
            and U.S. Congressman, gave commencement speech at 
            Furlow Masonic Female College
May   1876  Providence Post Office established at W.H. Davison's, 
            17th District
July  1876  Lamar Post Office established at D.H. Hooks', 15th 
            District; C.M.E. trustees J.R. Covington, George 
            Andrews, Cato Key, Austin Jones and Dennis J. Sheppard 
            branded Rev. N.B. Sterrett, A.M.E., a liar in burning 
            of original Scott's Mater Tabernacle sanctuary
Apr.  1877  Americus showered by grasshoppers and sea birds
May   1877  Charles Tommy, black, executed on McCay Hill for mur-
            der of Mrs. Caraway, white, near Smithville
Oct.  1877  dedication of first A.M.E. Church (originally organ-
            ized in 1860), with Bishop Campbell, D.D., officiat-
            ing (northeast corner Jackson and Wild)
Jan.  1878  Americus Library Association organized first public 
            library, Thornton Wheatley, president, Dr. E.J. Eld-
            ridge and Charles W. Hancock, vice-presidents, James 
            Fricker, secretary, Miss Emma Rylander, librarian 
Apr.  1878  fire destroyed City Hall (northeast corner Cotton and 
            Lamar) block from its corner to Chapman's Bar (now 
            #111 W. Lamar) 
May   1879  "Americus Recorder" began publication with Messrs. M. 
            Callaway and J.R. Christian in charge, followed more 
            successfully by Maj. Wm. L. Glessner and his son-in-
            law Henry C. Storey; East Americus Methodist Church 
            constructed on 1/2 acre donated by John J. Hudson 
            (southwest corner Hudson and Jefferson)
June  1879  last graduating class of Furlow Masonic Female Col-
            lege, Capt. A.H. Flewellen, president
Oct.  1879  Americus Library Association occupied new library
            (present site of old Carnegie Library on S. Jackson) 
Jan.  1880  Americus public schools began operation after 7-year 
            court battle
Mar.  1880  Confederate dead at Andersonville transferred to Oak 
            Grove Cemetery with Miller & McCall, of Monumental 
            Marble Works, supplying tombstones in Apr. 1884
May   1880  Mrs. Ella E. Clark donated 1 acre lot to Welcome Bap-
            tist Church (south side Middle River Rd. east of Ga. 
Sept. 1880  Gov. Alfred Colquitt appointed Willis A. Hawkins as 
            Associate Justice, Georgia Supreme Court
Oct.  1880  Georgia humorist Bill Arp spoke at auditorium of for-
            mer Furlow Masonic Female College
Nov.  1880  Colored Odd Fellows Lodge organized in Americus
Jan.  1881  Andersonville incorporated
Mar.  1881  Elder T.K. Pursley elected first Mayor of Anderson-
            ville; Martha M. Gwynes sold 2 acres for Freeman Hill 
            Cemetery, Peter Lowe, Turner Hall, Asbury Harrison, 
            John Epkins, Sam Peterson, trustees (east side Burma 
            Rd. just south of Andersonville)
Apr.  1881  Andersonville Primitive Baptist Church dedicated by
            Elders J.M. Woodall, of Marion Co., Sam English, of
            Macon Co., and T.K. Pursley, of Andersonville
June  1881  "Americus Light Infantry," Co. L, Ga. State Troops, 
            organized, Capt. Geo. S. Watts, commanding
Mar.  1882  earthquake in Americus as a tornado struck southern 
            Sumter County
July  1882  Mt. Olive Baptist Church dedicated, Rev. J.C. Bryan, 
            pastor (northwest corner Jefferson and Poplar) 
Sept. 1882  Gov. Alexander H. Stephens visited Americus
Jan.  1883  Bell, Bosworth, Hudson, Lester, Mayo and Patterson 
            named by City Council
June  1883  Bethel African Missionary Baptist Church organized, 
            Rev. B.B. Hinton, officiating, Rev. Stephen White, 
            pastor, bought and moved into Presbyterians' former 
Aug.  1883  Elbert Head and James Ellis were first blacks to 
            serve on Sumter Superior Court jury
Mar.  1884  fire destroyed Barlow Block and entire west side of 
            Jackson, between Forsyth and Lamar, except the buil-
            dings at north and south ends, all rebuilt by autumn
Apr.  1884  Charles M. Wheatley began construction of Presbyteri-
            ans' current sanctuary (west side Jackson between 
            Church and Lamar)
June  1884  Samuel Hugh Hawkins, Esq. established Georgia's only 
            privately-financed railroad, the Americus, Preston 
            and Lumpkin (name changed to better-known Savannah, 
            Americus and Montgomery, or SAM, in Dec. 1888)
July  1884  McCay (pronounced McCoy) Hill School construction be-
            gan, Americus' first black public school, Samuel 
            Stevens and Jefferson Jones, local black architects;
            Milton L. Hudson sold the right of way to Americus,
            Preston and Lumpkin Railroad that became town of
Aug.  1884  dedication of New Mt. Moriah Missionary Baptist 
            Church, Rev. Alex H. Hall, pastor (south side Mask 
            Rd. west of Brady Rd.)
Dec.  1884  dedication of Benevolence Methodist Church sanctuary, 
            Rev. Geo. G.N. McDonell, pastor (southwest corner 
            U.S. 19 and Little Bear Branch Rd.)
Mar.  1885  George W.F. Phillips and Lee Jones started Franklin 
            Square Library, at McCay Hill School, Americus' first 
            public library for blacks
Sept  1885  first train to Preston over Americus, Preston and
            Lumpkin Railroad, Samuel H. Hawkins, president 
Jan.  1886  Uriah B. Harrold, prominent local capitalist, had 
            first telephones installed in Americus
May   1886  CSA Gen. John B. Gordon made campaign appearance in 
            Americus during gubernatorial election
Aug.  1886  "The Americus Monitor," first local black newspaper, 
            edited and published by Prof. G.W.F. Phillips, McCay 
            Hill School principal; Mayor John B. Felder stabbed 
            Alderman Dr. Willis P. Burt, on Lamar near Jackson 
            (Burt survived and ran against Felder in the December 
            election and lost); Americus and Sumter County felt
            the effects of Charleston, S.C. earthquake
Apr.  1887  announcement of naming of DeSoto; J.W. Jordan, Jr. 
            announced new town of Huntington, also in 15th Dis-
            trict, named for S.H. Hawkins' friend, Charles Allen 
June  1887  depots opened at DeSoto and Huntington
Aug.  1887  citizens of Job petitioned to change its name to Les-
            lie (done in Sept. 1889)
Oct.  1887  Southwest Baptist Association bought 17 acres on 
            North Lee to erect black center of higher education, 
            ultimately the Americus Institute; ex-Confederate
            President Jefferson Davis made a brief appearance
            at the Central Depot enroute to Macon's State Fair
            CSA veterans' reunion
Dec.  1887  Americus put up street signs and began numbering 
            homes and businesses; Americus Telephone Exchange 
            opened with 41 phones
Mar.  1888  third Sumter County courthouse completed, Bruce & 
            Morgan, of Atlanta, architects (southeast corner 
            Forsyth and Lee), razed Nov. 1959 to July 1960
July  1888  Zebulon H. Gilreath, Americus gas plant engineer,
            opened mains for introduction of new energy source
            to city
Aug.  1888  Maj. Moses Speer, president, Bank of Southwestern 
            Georgia, began movement that culminated in building 
            the Windsor Hotel
Aug.  1889  Henry W. Grady, voice of "the New South," spoke at 
            CSA veterans' reunion at courthouse square
Nov.  1889  DeSoto incorporated, Edward Stanley Ferguson, mayor
Jan.  1890  Americus Electric Street Railway, brainchild of Mayor 
            John B. Felder, began operating, first chartered in 
            Georgia; "Americus Times" became "Recorder's" rival, 
            R.H. Brumby, managing editor, J.W. Furlow, city 
            editor; Americus-Columbus Institute incorporated 
            (present site of A.S. Staley Middle School) by A.J. 
            Allen, R. Munson, A.S. Staley, A.W. Walker, O.C. 
            Green, W.W. McKenzie, S.S. Humbert, B. Carter, with 
            name changed to Americus Institute in Sept. 1902 
Feb.  1890  Americus Manufacturing and Improvement Corp., Messrs. 
            S.H. Hawkins, M. Speer, J.W. Sheffield, P.C. Clegg, 
            Glover & Lanier, T. Wheatley, C.M. Wheatley, John 
            Windsor, C.C. Hawkins and W.E. Hawkins, organized in-
            vestor capital for $100,000 hotel (southwest corner 
            public square); local black Republican Party leader, 
            David A. Dudley, was appointed Americus postmaster by 
            President Benj. Harrison, but strenuous opposition 
            from Congressman C.F. Crisp and local Democratic      
            power structure killed nomination; Emily Robinson 
            sold Trinity A.M.E. Church its 1/4 acre lot, in Isom-
            ville, northeast corner Parker and Tripp (consolida-
            ted with Allen Chapel A.M.E. 1965) 
Apr.  1890  "Americus Evening Herald" began sporadic publication; 
            groundbreaking for fourth sanctuary of Baptist Church 
            Bruce & Morgan, architects (northeast corner Lee and 
June  1890  cornerstone ceremony for First Baptist Church sanctu-
            ary, Rev. A.B. Campbell, pastor, razed May 1960 and
            cornerstone reopened Feb. 1961, Mrs. J.R. Britton at-
            tending both ceremonies 
Aug.  1890  John R. McNeill deeded 1 1/6 acres to Shady Grove 
            Baptist Church, (south side New Era Rd. between Ga. 
            49 and New Era) 
Sept. 1890  actual construction begun on Windsor Hotel
Oct.  1890  steamer "City of Americus" plied Savannah River be-
            tween Augusta and Savannah; Ed Timmerman sold St. 
            Paul's A.M.E. Church its land (northeast corner Del-
            la Glass Rd. and Logan Store Rd.) 
Nov.  1890  Sumter County 15th most populous, with 21,948; Ameri-
            cus 8th among cities, with 6,398 
Jan.  1891  cornerstone ceremony for Americus City Hall, also de-
            signed by Windsor architect Gottfried L. Norrman 
            (east side Lee between Forsyth and Lamar)
Feb.  1891  DeSoto Baptist Church organized, Rev. C.E. Walters, 
Apr.  1891  competing "Times" and "Recorder" consolidated into 
            "Times-Recorder," Bascom Myrick, publisher
May   1891  Americus' first Board of Trade established, an early 
            version of the Chamber of Commerce
July  1891  escaped circus hyena loose in Americus killing citi-
            zens' dogs and chickens
Nov.  1891  "Americus Tribune," weekly black newspaper, began 
Dec.  1891  Congressman Charles Frederick Crisp, of Americus, 
            elected Speaker, U.S. House of Representatives 
Jan.  1892  St. Mary's Roman Catholic Church completed, a wooden 
            domed structure designed by G.L. Norrman (east side 
            Lee between Brannon and Taylor), razed Feb. 1961 
June  1892  grand opening of Windsor Hotel (originally named Al-
            hambra); electric street cars resumed operation until 
            August; Sumter County jail completed, another G.L. 
            Norrman creation, between and behind courthouse and
            city hall 
Oct.  1892  death of Elbert Head, prominent local black capital-
            ist and Republican Party leader
Nov.  1892  J.W. Bailey donated 1 acre to Leslie Methodist Church 
            trustees to build a sanctuary
Dec.  1892  murder of Dr. Joseph J. Worsham by Dr. James B. Hin-
            kle and his son, Dr. Albert B. Hinkle (site of Carne-
            gie Library on Jackson) 
Mar.  1893  Mary J. Taylor sold Mt. Creek A.M.E. Church its 1 
            acre lot in Andersonville, "where church house now 
            stands" (now located north side Sam Bradley Rd., just
            west of Ga. 195) 
Apr.  1893  John L. Sullivan, former heavyweight boxing champion, 
            performed in play, "The Man From Boston," at Glover's 
            Opera House, and stayed at the Windsor; W.H. "Bill"
            Styles, black State Representative of Liberty County,
            visited Americus, his former home; Dr. J. William Jones,
            Robert E. Lee's chaplain, preached at Americus Baptist
            Church and spoke to Sumter County Bible Society at 
            First Methodist Church
June  1893  Congressman William Jennings Bryan visited Speaker 
            Charles F. Crisp and stayed at the Windsor
Dec.  1893  "Penny Press" published in Americus by Walter Francis
Feb.  1894  last of electric street railway track removed
Mar.  1894  Henry Harvey found rifle pits on his farm near Shiloh 
            Church, left over from 1836 Indian wars
Apr.  1894  Americus and Ellaville connected by telephone
May   1894  Evangelist Sam Dean gave speech at Opera House
Oct.  1894  Second Methodist Church moved to southwest corner, 
            Jefferson and Mayo, and renamed St. Paul's Methodist; 
            Americus and Albany connected by telephone
Nov.  1894  formal dedication of Salem Methodist Church sanctuary
            (south side Upper River Rd. just west of Neil Hodges
            Rd.), Rev. L.J. Ballard, pastor
Aug.  1895  Friendship Baptist Church organized, Rev. J.C. Bryan, 
            pastor (east side Cotton north of Wheeler); Marie 
            Louise Scudder Myrick became only woman in Georgia to 
            be owner, publisher and editor of a daily newspaper, 
            "Americus Times-Recorder" (by Feb. 1896, she was only 
            one in entire South!)
Jan.  1896  more than 20 saloons operated in Americus
Feb.  1896  Eugene V. Debs, American labor leader, spoke at City 
            Hall and stayed at the Windsor
May   1896  R.L. Kite sold Mt. Carmel A.M.E. Church its 1 acre 
            lot (west side Hooks Mill Rd. south of Mask Rd.) 
July  1896  cornerstone ceremony for Scott's Mater Tabernacle 
            C.M.E.'s brick sanctuary, Rev. G.A. Thomas, pastor
Sept. 1896  legislative bill introduced to incorporate Plains
Dec.  1896  Americus and Atlanta connected by telephone; Plains 
            adopted its first charter
Jan.  1897  Plains first city council:  Dr. Burr T. Wise, Mayor, 
            Randolphus S. Oliver, William L. Thomas, Edwin Tim-
            merman, Sr. and Luther D. Wise, councilmen; Americus 
            Women's Literary Club organized, Mrs. May Speer Ans-
            ley, president, Mrs. W.B. Worthy, vice-president, 
            Miss Carrie Speer, secretary-treasurer
Feb.  1897  Furlow Lawn Baptist Church (now Central Baptist) or-
            ganized, led by Richard M. Stewart, Dr. Evan T. Ma-
            this, E. Frank Lanier, Walton T. Callaway, W.T.A. 
            Dunn and Frank A. Hooper; Seaboard Railroad (then Ga. 
            & Ala.) depot opened (west side S. Jackson at Finn), 
            burned May 1918, rebuilt Sept. 1918, finally razed 
            Nov. 1952 after last passenger train a year before 
Mar.  1897  First Baptist of Americus formally named by confer-
Oct.  1897  Americus Institute opened with two teachers and nine 
            pupils in small, two-room cottage, as a high school, 
            Major W. Reddick, principal
Nov.  1897  Jackson St. School changed its name to Furlow School
Apr.  1898  Masonic Grand Master W.E. Terry led cornerstone cere-
            mony for Masonic Orphans Home, 3-story brick edifice,  
            dedicated June 1903 (south side Brinson between 
            Jackson and Lee); tornado ripped a path two miles 
            long and 400 yards wide between K.L. Worthy and B.H. 
            Worthy plantations near Friendship 
June  1898  Co. G, 3rd U.S. Volunteer Inf., organized for Spanish 
            -American War, Capt. Walter K. Wheatley, commanding; 
            Zion Hope Missionary Baptist Church bought 1 acre lot
            from DeSoto Plantation Co., (now west side DeSoto 
            Seed Farm Rd. just south of DeSoto) 
Nov.  1898  two U.S. Army units, 8th Mass. Inf. and 12th N.Y. 
            Inf., encamped in Leeton, a suburb, along Lee St. 
            Road, Camp Gilman (soldier committed suicide by hang-
            ing himself in nearby woods)
Apr.  1899  Lucien Lamar Knight, eminent Georgia historian, was 
            featured speaker at Confederate Memorial Day ceremony 
            at Oak Grove Cemetery
Feb.  1900  CSA Gen. John B. Gordon gave a speech at Glover's Op-
            era House; Democratic presidential candidate William 
            Jennings Bryan gave a speech at Central Depot enroute 
            to Columbus
Mar.  1900  Judge Charles R. Crisp spoke at dedication of Confed-
            erate monument base, of Georgia granite and Tennessee
            marble, intersection Forsyth and Lee 
Apr.  1900  William Morris, of Chicago, built 4-story apartment 
            building there and named it "Americus" because he was 
            impressed with our city; Planters Bank Bldg. opened 
            (southwest corner Forsyth and Lee)
June  1900  Windsor Avenue named
Sept. 1900  1,700-pound Confederate statue, of Italian marble,
            placed at intersection of Forsyth and Lee, Miller &
            Clark, of Americus, designers, sponsored by Ladies'
            Memorial Association and Daughters of the Confederacy
            (removed to north end Rees Park in 1947)
Nov.  1900  Americus still 8th most populous city in Georgia, 
            with 7,647; Universalist Church (now First Christian) 
            completed (north side Taylor east of Lee)
Mar.  1901  Sumter City acquired depot and Methodist Church
Apr.  1901  Providence Spring archway, at Andersonville Prison, 
            built by Edgar J. Miller & Carroll J. Clark, of 
Sept. 1901  torrential rains and quarter-mile wide Muckalee Creek
            washed away all city bridges and inundated Magnolia
Nov.  1901  Guerry Adderton killed Charles D. Mize in self-defense
            in N. Jackson tenderloin district; Times-Recorder began
            first-ever "Column for Colored People," by Dr. E.J.
Jan.  1902  Bank of Plains incorporated:  R.S. Oliver, president, 
            W.L. Thomas, cashier, and directors R.S. Oliver, T.M. 
            Merritt, W.L. Thomas, J.E. French, B.T. Wise and 
            Frank Sheffield
Feb.  1902  Americus chapter, Society for the Prevention of Cru-
            elty to Animals, organized, Judge R.L. Maynard, pre-
            sident, T.M. Furlow, vice-president and T.W. Calla-
            way, secretary; Americus Elks Lodge No. 752 organ-
            ized, Charles A. Fricker, exalted ruler 
Apr.  1902  formal dedication of Methodist Church sanctuary at 
            Sumter City, Rev. J.G. Harrison, pastor
May   1902  Midway Baptist Church dedicated, Rev. R.L. Bivins, 
            pastor (Lot 128, 16th Dist.); last sermon preached in 
            antebellum First Methodist Church sanctuary by Rev. 
            Dr. J.W. Hinton, who had preached its dedication 
            sermon 46 years earlier from same Bible verse, with 
            demolition begun next day
July  1902  first car made its appearance on streets of Americus 
Aug.  1902  Oliver-French Co. Bldg. completed and J.E. French & 
            Co. Bldg. started, both in Plains; lightning struck
            Leslie Baptist Church killing Richard M. Dodson and
            requiring reconstruction of entire sanctuary
Nov.  1902  Plains connected by telephone line to Americus; 
            telephone service between Americus and Columbus was
Dec.  1902  "Americus Daily Press" began publication (ceased Dec.
Mar.  1903  Americus YMCA chartered by C.L. Ansley, G.W. Bacot, 
            T.W. Callaway, W.C. Carter, F.W. Griffin, C.P. Hammond,
            Lee Hansford, T.H. McGillis, John W. Shiver, W.E. Staley
            and W.P. Wallis; Allen Chapel A.M.E. Church bought from 
            Patterson family its 1/8 acre lot, Rev. J.S. Myrick, 
            pastor (intersection Carter and Lee)
May   1903  Rhode Island monument dedicated at Andersonville  
Oct.  1903  Americus street signs installed, white letters on 
            blue background
May   1905  Americus' first city hospital opened in former T.M. 
            Furlow antebellum mansion (west side Barlow between 
            College and Furlow), organized and administered by 
            women, only one in Georgia, Americus and Sumter County 
            Hospital Association, Mrs. P.C. Clegg, president
Oct.  1905  "Americus Light Infantry" marched in Atlanta parade 
            honoring President Theodore Roosevelt's visit there
Apr.  1906  Clark Rowe, born a slave, grandson of a full-blooded 
            Cherokee woman, celebrated his 106th birthday, with 
            over 50 years residency in Americus
May   1906  Sumter County's first, and only, double execution,
            hanging of convicted murderers George Broughton and 
            John Graham, in jail stockade (southwest corner Forsyth 
            and Prince)
Sept. 1906  Jonas Hicks executed by hanging in the jail yard,
            for murder of Jarret J. Davis; Americus' antebellum 
            alarm bell sold to church in Stillmore, Ga.
Nov.  1906  announcement of Sumter's selection as site of Third 
            District Agricultural & Mechanical College, to be 
            built in Americus (now Georgia Southwestern)
      1907  Peace Baptist Church constituted, Rev. J.L. Latimer,
Jan.  1907  completion of Wisconsin monument at Andersonville 
            National Cemetery, Carroll J. Clark, contractor
Feb.  1907  "Americus Evening News," H.P. Trimble, editor, began 
            publication (ceased publishing the following month)
Mar.  1907  Americus police officer William R. Morris shot while 
            trying to arrest William Reese at his N. Jackson home 
            (Reese was killed that evening in a wild shootout 
            with police, on Magnolia, and Morris died two days 
May   1907  Hugh L. Mize opened Prospect Park (east side Hwy. 19 
            north of McGarrah)
June  1907  cornerstone ceremony for St. Andrew's Evangelical Lu-
            theran Church in Plains, Rev. Charles A. Phillips, 
            pastor; downtown Americus streets to be paved with 
            vitrified brick; Dr. Peter F. Bahnsen, of Americus,
            appointed as first state veterinarian (resigned 1927) 
Jan.  1908  formal opening of Third District Agricultural and 
            Mechanical School, John M. Collum, president; 
            Americus' first Order of the Eastern Star chartered,
            Mrs. H. Egbert Allen, worthy matron, Mr. E.A. Nisbet,
            worthy patron, Mrs. John M. Goolsby, associate matron 
May   1908  Booker T. Washington spoke at Americus Institute, Ma-
            jor W. Reddick, president; Sheffield-Huntington Co.'s 
            $750 motor-buggy, first of its kind in Americus
June  1908  track for horse racing constructed (south side of
            Church west of Central of Ga. tracks)
Apr.  1909  Methodist Church sanctuary in DeSoto begun; formal 
            opening of Americus Carnegie Library (west side Jack-
            son south of Lamar); Americus Automobile Club organ-
            ized, Frank Lanier, president, Crawford Wheatley, 
            vice-president, Lee Hansford, secretary-treasurer
May   1909  dedication of Wirz Monument at Andersonville, built 
            by C.J. Clark, of Americus 
July  1909  plans drawn for Americus Country Club (east side Lee 
            St. Road south of city limits)
Sept  1909  Sumter County's first automobile fatalities, John 
            McLendon and Ella G. Burton, on Myrtle Springs Rd.,
            2 miles west of Americus
Oct.  1909  Robert E. Lee deeded church and lot on Cotton to  
            Friendship Baptist Church trustees; Frank Sheffield 
            donated to DeSoto Methodist Church its lot on Luke
Apr.  1910  cornerstone laid for Americus High School, Little & 
            Phillips, of Cordele, architects (west side Elm south
            of Taylor, on Rees Park)
May   1910  Federal Bldg. (now Municipal Bldg.) opened (northwest 
            corner Lamar and Lee), with third floor added in 1933;
            Henry Patterson, black, executed at stockade (south-
            west corner Forsyth and Prince) for murder of Capt. 
            W.F. McRae, white
July  1910  cornerstone ceremony for Plains Methodist Church, 
            J.P. Dickerson, pastor
Nov.  1911  Posey R. Stanfield, of Americus, age 90, was the old-
            est Mason in Georgia; "South Georgia Progress" began 
            weekly publication
Dec.  1911  "The Americus Chronicle," W. Robert Mack, editor and 
            publisher, local black newspaper
Feb.  1912  Frank Sheffield donated triangular park to city (cor-
            ner Brown and Taylor)
Mar.  1912  Aviator Robert G. Fowler made first flight over Amer-
            icus in Wright biplane, from Agricultural College
Apr.  1912  Democratic presidential candidate Woodrow Wilson made 
            a whistle-stop speech at Central Depot, Cotton and 
May   1912  Americus Lodge #824, Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen
June  1912  Zion Hill Missionary Baptist Church organized (west
            side Ga. 118 south of Holman Rd.)
Aug.  1912  Drs. Burr Thaddeus and Samual Paul Wise, brothers,
            opened Plains' first hospital, T.O. Lawson, contrac-
Nov.  1912  Wheatley St. opened from Felder to the college, named 
            for Hon. William Harris Crawford Wheatley
Dec.  1912  formal dedication of Illinois Monument at Anderson-
            ville Cemetery 
Apr.  1913  John Phillip Sousa, the "March King," was trapshoot-
            ing at Americus Country Club; Americus Ball Club in-
            corporated, Frank Lanier, I.J. Kalmon, H.C. Mitchell, 
            J.T. Warren, R.B. White, petitioners 
May   1913  fire destroyed fifth floor and roof of Windsor Hotel
June  1913  Will Redding lynched at the northeast corner of Cot-
            ton and Lamar, for shooting Police Chief William C. 
Aug.  1913  former Americus attorney, Frank A. Hooper, as co-
            counsel to Solicitor Hugh M. Dorsey, began closing
            arguments in trial of Leo Frank in Atlanta 
Nov.  1913  "Popular Mechanics" published story, with photo, of 
            Americus' Jackson and Lamar intersection with "Keep 
            to the Right" signs as "a sufficient solution of the 
            crossing problem" on urban streets
Jan.  1914  Prospect Heights (east side U.S. 19 north of McGar-
            rah intersection) and East Americus, or Wheatley, 
            (north side Forsyth east of Mayo) Elementary Schools 
            approved by Board of Education building committee 
Feb.  1914  St. Paul's Methodist Church in East Americus reloca-
            ted in new sanctuary (northwest corner Lamar and 
May   1914  formal dedication of Americus and Sumter County Hos-
            pital (south side Dodson west of Lee); former Furlow 
            Masonic Female College building razed, with its cor-
            nerstone incorporated into new Furlow Grammar School 
            on same site
June  1914  first Americus Boy Scout troop organized, now #21, 
            one of the first seven in Georgia, by Rev. J.A. 
            Thomas, pastor, First United Methodist Church
Aug.  1914  during construction of Muckalee bridge on Spring St., 
            workers discovered original 1830's road bed and wood
            bridge fourteen feet deep in mud 
Sept. 1914  Bagley's name changed to Arles, on Central RR, three 
            miles north of Americus
Oct.  1914  Cobb incorporated:  Mayor W.J. Hill, Aldermen I.L. 
            Howard, W.J. Kiel, H.H. Wade and Homer Wade