Lowndes County, Georgia

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Lowndes County, Georgia
Courthouse of Lowndes County, Georgia.jpg
Lowndes County Courthouse in Valdosta, Georgia
Map of Georgia highlighting Lowndes County
Location in the state of Georgia
Map of the United States highlighting Georgia
Georgia's location in the U.S.
Founded December 23, 1825
Named for William Jones Lowndes
Seat Valdosta
Largest city Valdosta
Area
 • Total 510.63 sq mi (1,323 km2)
 • Land 504.22 sq mi (1,306 km2)
 • Water 6.41 sq mi (17 km2), 1.26%
Population (Est.)
 • (2012) 114,552
 • Density 183/sq mi (294/km²)
Congressional districts 1st, 8th
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4
Website www.lowndescounty.com

Lowndes County (pronounced Lounds) is a county located in the U.S. state of Georgia along the Florida border. It was created December 23, 1825. As of the 2010 Census the population was 109,233.1 The county seat is Valdosta.

It is the largest county in the Valdosta, Georgia Metropolitan Statistical Area.

The county is a major commercial, educational, and manufacturing center of south Georgia with considerable forest products including pulpwood and naval stores, such as turpentine and rosin. Part of Grand Bay, a 13,000-acre (53 km2) swamp is located in Lowndes County.

History

The land that became Lowndes County, had historically been inhabited by the Timucua. During most the age of European colonization the area of modern Lowndes County was part of the colony of Spanish Florida. From approximately 1625 to 1657, the Spanish Empire maintained a Catholic mission to the Timucua dubbed Mission Santa Cruz de Cachipile in the southern portion of Lowndes County near Lake Park. In the centuries that followed Timicua civilization collapsed due to slave raiding and disease. By the dawn of the 19th century the future area of Lowndes County was considered to be part of the lands belonging to the Creek Nation. On December 15, 1818 Irwin County was organized out of the Creek lands.

Lowndes County was established by an act passed by the Georgia legislature on December 23, 1925. It was formed out of the 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 15th, and 16th land districts of Irwin County, Georgia.2 The county was named for William Jones Lowndes (1782–1822), a prominent South Carolina lawyer and Congressman whose father, South Carolina Governor Rawlins Lowndes, had been a Revolutionary War leader. The Coffee Road was the first route through the area of Lowndes County and opened up the area to white settlers.

The first county seat was named Franklinville and was located a mile to the east of Hahira. The introduction of steam-powered on the Withlacochee and Little Rivers led to a shift in the population to Lowndesville. In 1833 Lowndesville replaced Franklinville as the county seat. Lowndesville was shortly thereafter renamed Troupville. Rumors of the Brunswick and Chattahoochee Railroad, the opening up of Florida, and the prosperity of the surrounding farmland led to the growth of Troupville and Lowndes County in general.

Native Americans were not a huge problem in this area. The closest battle between Native Americans and whites to Troupville was at Brushy Creek on November 10, 1836 in modern Berrien County. The reason for the conflict was that the Native Americans were passing through Lowndes County to join the Seminoles in Florida. General Scott intended to stop it and did. Virtually no Native Americans were left in South Georgia.

In February 1850 Lowndes County lost land during the formation of Clinch County, Georgia. At that time the eastern boarder of Lowndes County became the Alapaha River.3 Lowndes County lost additional territory with the establishment of Berrien County, Georgia and Colquitt County, Georgia on February 25, 1856.

Many residents of Lowndes County were unhappy when the plans for the Atlantic and Gulf Railroad to bypass Troupville were announced June 17, 1858. On June 22 at 3:00 am, the Lowndes County courthouse at Troupville was set aflame by William B. Crawford, who fled to South Carolina after being released on bond. On August 9, a meeting convened in the academy building in Troupville at which it was decided to create from the area of Lowndes County to the west of the Withlacoochee River a new county to be called Brooks County.4 Brooks was formed that December. On December 13, 1858 the Georgia legislature passed a bill establishing Echols County, Georgia.

In December 1859 the Lowndes County board of commissioners were instructed by an act of the Georgia legislature to purchase for the county land for a new county seat along the line of the Atlantic and Gulf Railroad and as close to the center of the county a possible. As part of the same act the Brooks-Lowndes County boarder was adjusted so that the east bank of the Little River formed the boarder.5

Land belonging to William Wisenbaker was chosen as the site of the new county seat of Valdosta. The arrival of the railroad led to the downfall of Troupville and the rise of Valdosta as a center for the economy of south Georgia.

The final major change to the boarders of Lowndes County came in 1920 when Lanier County, Georgia was established.

Geography

According to the 2000 census, the county has a total area of 510.63 square miles (1,322.5 km2), of which 504.22 square miles (1,305.9 km2) (or 98.74%) is land and 6.41 square miles (16.6 km2) (or 1.26%) is water.6

Major highways

Interstate highways

U.S. highways

State routes

Adjacent counties

Rivers

Railways

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1830 2,453
1840 5,574 127.2%
1850 7,714 38.4%
1860 5,249 −32.0%
1870 8,321 58.5%
1880 11,049 32.8%
1890 15,102 36.7%
1900 20,036 32.7%
1910 24,436 22.0%
1920 26,521 8.5%
1930 29,994 13.1%
1940 31,860 6.2%
1950 35,211 10.5%
1960 49,270 39.9%
1970 55,112 11.9%
1980 67,972 23.3%
1990 75,981 11.8%
2000 92,115 21.2%
2010 109,233 18.6%
Est. 2012 114,552 4.9%
U.S. Decennial Census7
2012 Estimate8

As of the census of 2000, there were 92,115 people, 32,654 households, and 22,237 families residing in the county. The population density was 183 people per square mile (71/km²). There were 36,551 housing units at an average density of 72 per square mile (28/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 62.00% White, 33.99% Black or African American, 0.37% Native American, 1.20% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 1.08% from other races, and 1.32% from two or more races. 2.66% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 32,654 households out of which 35.30% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.50% were married couples living together, 15.90% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.90% were non-families. 24.20% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.60% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.61 and the average family size was 3.14.

In the county the population was spread out with 26.20% under the age of 18, 15.10% from 18 to 24, 31.30% from 25 to 44, 18.50% from 45 to 64, and 9.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 30 years. For every 100 females there were 98.90 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.60 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $32,132, and the median income for a family was $41,580. Males had a median income of $28,411 versus $20,755 for females. The per capita income for the county was $16,683. About 13.90% of families and 18.30% of the population were below the poverty line, including 22.80% of those under age 18 and 17.30% of those age 65 or over.

Incorporated cities and military base

Unincorporated Cities, Towns, and Historic Communities

  • Barretts
  • Beloteville
  • Bemiss
  • Blanton
  • Cat Creek
  • Clyattville
  • Delmar
  • Eddy
  • Franklinville (historic)
  • Little Miami
  • Long Pond
  • Haines
  • Indianola
  • Kinderlou
  • Mars
  • Melrose
  • Mineola
  • Olympia
  • Ousley
  • Quillian
  • Naylor
  • Ralls
  • Sims
  • Stella
  • Tillman
  • Troupville
  • Twin Lakes

Recreation

Valdosta Wake Compound

See also

References

  1. ^ United States Census Bureau. "2010 Census Data". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 20 February 2012. 
  2. ^ http://metis.galib.uga.edu/ssp/cgi-bin/legis-idx.pl?sessionid=665ee0b1-1686cf6e77-6759&type=law&byte=7167552
  3. ^ http://metis.galib.uga.edu/ssp/cgi-bin/legis-idx.pl?sessionid=665ee0b1-1686cf6e77-6759&type=law&byte=24476170
  4. ^ Shelton, Jane (2001). Pines and Pioneers: A History of Lowndes County, Georgia 1825-1900. Lowndes County Historical Society. ISBN 9780877970347.
  5. ^ http://metis.galib.uga.edu/ssp/cgi-bin/legis-idx.pl?sessionid=665ee0b1-1686cf6e77-6759&type=law&byte=34420371
  6. ^ "Census 2000 U.S. Gazetteer Files: Counties". United States Census. Retrieved 2011-02-13. 
  7. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". Census.gov. Retrieved July 22, 2013. 
  8. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Census.gov. Retrieved July 22, 2013. 

External links

Coordinates: 30°50′N 83°16′W / 30.83°N 83.27°W / 30.83; -83.27








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