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Georgia Natural Wonder #159 - Euharlee Creek - Cartersville (Part 2)
September 21, 2020 06:54AM

Georgia Natural Wonder #159 - Euharlee Creek - Cartersville (Part 2)

We were just overwhelmed with our Cartersville history tangent on the last post. We have so much more to cover. But instead of taking a second strictly history post, we are covering a whole new wonder in the Cartersville area, and doing Cartersville (Part 2) as a final tangent on Cartersville. We came to today's wonder in one of my many insurance adjuster trips around Georgia, chasing historical markers. We found the bridge and the town of Euharlee, but after some Internet research, we feel the wonder should be the whole Euharlee Creek, not just the covered bridge area.

Euharlee Creek

Euharlee Creek is a 21-mile-long waterway which traverses across two counties in Georgia, USA, Bartow County and Polk County. It begins in Polk County near the city of Rockmart and joins the Etowah River in Euharlee.

Euharlee Outfitters run a mostly Etowah River run up to ten miles.

"Euharlee" is a name derived from the Cherokee language, meaning "she laughs as she runs", referring to the sound of the Euharlee Creek.

Osborne Park Euharlee.

From the photographs found, I think have a whole new wonder, but I will include a prelude here even though this is technically Polk County Georgia. The headwaters of the Euharlee Creek reveals the dramatic Hightower Waterfall.

Sitting on the banks the beautiful Euharlee Creek is Hightower's Mill.

Located at the base of the Appalachian Mountains and a short distance from Cedartown, Georgia.

The mill was built about 1843 by Elias Dorsey Hightower and was largely a grist and woolen mill.

This waterfall is a very easy walk from Hightower Park off Hightower Road.

However, this is a family-owned park and a private event venue, so it isn't open to the public.

The only way to gain access to the falls is to contact the park by email and telephone and ask for permission.

Past experience has showed that they will probably be cooperative.

The Creek runs east toward Bartow County. There are many rocky features along it's shore.

But overall, it is is a pretty mellow float. Not even mentioned in American Whitewater.

Euharlee Covered Bridge

Now admittedly, the real reason we chose this as a Natural Wonder is more hand of man, than nature. From Cartersville, travel Highway 113 west to the Georgia Power plant with its massive coal cooling towers.

Turning right to go past this, you step back in time to the Euharlee Covered Bridge.

Approaching the bridge from the north. This shows full detail of the bridge and its approach. Note the curvature of the road. This likely made it difficult to maneuver being one-lane.

The Euharlee Covered Bridge, also known as the Euharlee Creek Covered Bridge or rarely the Lowry Bridge, is a wooden Town lattice covered bridge crossing Euharlee Creek in Euharlee, Georgia, United States, a small town west of Cartersville.

The bridge was built after the raging creek swept away an old bridge on the property of Daniel Lowry.

The collapse of the bridge killed one man. According to the North Georgia Journal, the previous bridge collapse caused the death of a local man, Mr. Nelson, a mule and a horse. Mr. Nelson two young sons emerged from the disaster unscathed. This led to the eventual construction of the present, much sturdier bridge.

A new bridge was built using some materials provided by Lowry.

This is the third wooden bridge to have spanned the creek in that spot. The first bridge collapsed on March 5, 1881 followed by a second bridge that was destroyed by flood.

This bridge is the centerpiece of a local covered bridge festival during the Labor Day weekend.

It is one of the oldest covered bridges remaining in the state of Georgia.

The bridge was built in 1886 by Horace King's son Washington W. King and Johnathan H. Burke. There was perhaps some help from King's father though, Horace was ill at the time.

The bridge spans 138 feet.

The lattice trusses consist of planks crisscrossing at 45- to 60-degree angles and are fastened with wooden pegs, or trunnels, at each intersection.

Close-up view of the covered part with a bit of the inside. The deck and running boards are maintained as if traffic was still using the structure..

Traffic finally stopped across the bridge in 1980 when a new two-lane bridge was built.

Except for some graffiti on one end of the bridge, this covered bridge, in the Bartow County town of Euharlee, has been well maintained by the local folks.

In 1997, a museum opened in the old cow shed near the bridge in historic downtown Euharlee. The museum features an assortment of local artifacts from the early American Indian habitation to an exhibit featuring the area's Civil War history and local institutions. The museum (free, but they appreciate donations) houses memorabilia about the bridge and the city of Euharlee.


The museum is open 12-5 Monday thru Friday. Though it is closed on weekends, if you call ahead (Euharlee City Hall, 770-386-1542), the staff will open it at special hours for groups.

The bridge is located adjacent to the ruins of an old mill once owned and operated by Daniel Lowry, who owned most of the land around the bridge.

Lowry also allowed the builders to use rock from his land to build the piers of the bridge after high water swept a previous, lower bridge away.

The foundation of the old Lowry Mill can still be seen near the north end of the Euharlee Covered Bridge.

Daniel Lowry (1813-1893) came to Euharlee in 1864, purchasing large tracts of land , as did his son Dan, Jr. (1845-1902), beginning in 1870. Together they accumulated over two thousand acres. Land was used for both farming and manufacturing, which included a grist mill, flour mill and cotton gin.

According to Thomas and Edward French in Covered Bridges of Georgia "Lowry also helped to rebuild the 3rd bridge wooden structure. Due to the fact the 2nd bridge was swept from its foundation and perhaps came to rest against the mill's south wall, it may have been salvaged. This could account for the numbering of the web members of the town lattice trusses." The maker's mark still appears. The numbering scheme made assembly of the final parts easier.

With the passing of time, Lowry descendents either sold or donated much of their property, some of which was acquired by the City of Euharlee. This includes two commissaries, a cow shed and general store, all dating to the early 1900’s. The City maintains each of these old buildings plus the old travelers’ well, hand dug in the early days of Euharlee’s existence; the old Militia District Courthouse, dating before the Civil War, and a calaboose or jail, all of which attest to Euharlee’s historic past and unique charm.


Euharlee is a bedroom community of Cartersville, the Bartow County seat which is located 9 miles to the east. They are connected through Euharlee Road, and by a chain of subdivisions and homes. Euharlee is located next to Plant Bowen, which has the second-largest generating capacity of any coal-fired power plant in the United States.

Euharlee barn.

Euharlee was originally called Burge's Mill by settlers as early as the 1840s. Burge’s Mill, was first named for Nathaniel Burge (1790-1849), an early settler born in Bristol Parish, Virginia. Nathaniel first came to Cass County from Gwinnett County, Georgia as early as 1837 after purchasing 800 acres along Euharlee Creek and the Etowah River. Burge built various mills along Euharlee Creek, near its confluence with the river.


Black Pioneer's Cemetery is an area of downtown Euharlee dedicated to preserving the gravesites of several early African-American settlers of the region.

Other early settlers followed and soon established the Mount Paran Church, forerunner of the current Euharlee Baptist Church.


On January 12, 1852, Burge’s Mill was incorporated as Euharleyville with Thomas W. Brandon, E. B. Presley, Leonard Morgan, Allen Dykes and B. D. Dykes as town commissioners. The year 1853 saw establishment of the Euharlee Presbyterian Church. The Mount Paran Baptist Church established the first school there in 1853, called the Mount Paran Academy. The Baptist’s built the school between both the Baptist and Presbyterian churches.

Much like the surrounding cities, Euharlee is scarred with the remnants of the Civil War. Union General William T. Sherman’s infamous march through Georgia led him and his 130,000 troops through Cartersville and straight into Euharlee. Trenches and artifacts can be found scattered throughout the area, but Sherman set up camp in the heart of Euharlee on a bit of land now known as Tilley Mill.

On September 16, 1870, the town was renamed and incorporated as Euharlee, the Academy being in the center, and with Dr. Franklin R. Calhoun, Elihu G. Nelson and Thomas Tumlin as commissioners. Euharlee was rechartered in 1976 with a mayor and council. Of interest is the fact that Euharleyville retained its charter with the State of Georgia up until July 1, 1995, at which time it was purged from the state rolls.

The new Euharlee Consolidated School was built in 1952 on the same site as the old Euharlee Institute. This school is now used by the City of Euharlee for a City Hall and Police Station.

The Mount Paran Academy, renamed the Euharlee School in 1870, burned in 1891 or 1892. Classes resumed at several homes in Euharlee until in 1896, the new Euharlee Presbyterian Institute was opened at a site now occupied by the Euharlee City Hall. The new two story building with two adjacent dormitories served Euharlee’s educational needs for the next 18 years. On September 10, 1914, Bartow County took over operations of the old Institute renaming the facility the Bartow Rural High School. The old Institute building was torn down by Bartow County in 1952 and replaced with a new modern facility housing the Euharlee Consolidated School. By 1960, the new school had closed and all students assigned to other Bartow County schools.

General Store.

The walk around the mill foundations is worthwhile. The whole town of Euharlee seemed well preserved and worth a visit on the way to Rome, going past the Macedonia Church built in 1847.

Milam Bridge

Another covered bridge had been built across the Etowah River in 1859 and named for Madison Milam, a local landowner who had operated a ferry nearby. However it was burned by retreating Confederate forces in May, 1864.

Historical Marker for Milam’s Covered Bridge.

This bridge was not replaced until 1912 using steel construction. It is now an abandoned camelback through truss bridge over Etowah River on Milam Bridge Rd.

The skeletal remains of this second Milam Bridge can still be seen spanning the river approximately a half mile upstream from the current concrete bridge on Euharlee Road.

On June 20th 1955 a man named Willie Grady Cochran abducted 14 year old Patricia Ann Cook in Rome, GA. After taking her to Old Lucas Road near Mullinax Mountain, he raped then killed the young girl. Using a quilt to cover her, he then wrapped a heavy logging chain around the body, then proceeded to Milam Bridge where he parked in the middle and threw her into the river below.

Cartersville (Part 2)

We covered Cartersville up to War One with our last report. Wikipedia does not report much history past that. They do note two extra points of interest.

The Booth Western Art Museum is on North Museum Drive in Cartersville. The Booth is the second-largest art museum in Georgia, and houses the largest permanent exhibition space for Western art in the country. It is a Smithsonian Institution Affiliate.

The Tellus Science Museum, formerly the Weinman Mineral Museum, is a Smithsonian Institution Affiliate and features the first digital planetarium in North Georgia. NASA has installed a camera that tracks meteors at the museum.


The schools that comprise the Cartersville City School System are: Cartersville Primary, Elementary, Middle, and High School

Home of the Hurricanes (Keith Henderson - Trevor Lawrence).

Cartersville also has a college campus:

Georgia Highlands College began offering classes in a small space in downtown Cartersville, Georgia in the 1980s. The current Cartersville location was opened in 2005. The site includes a 55,000-square-foot student center designed with a mountain lodge feel that matches the original classroom building and has a two-story stone fireplace in the open-air student lounge as its centerpiece.

Along with the campus bookstore, the center houses a small café, a game room, a weight and cardio room, two volleyball/basketball courts, and a suspended indoor running track.


Cartersville's economy had long relied heavily on cotton. Infestation by the boll weevil in 1917 devastated cotton production, causing a depressed economy that, even though supplemented with state road projects, remained weak until the construction of Allatoona Dam, a few miles east of the city, in 1950. The subsequent creation of Lake Allatoona and nearby Red Top Mountain State Park further improved the economy. By the mid-1970s Cartersville's agrarian economy had given way to an industrial economy, supplemented by increasing tourism.

New Riverside Ochre (ochre mining and processing), Vulcan Materials (construction aggregate mining), and Chemical Products (barite ore processing) are the only mining industries left that take advantage of the area's natural resources.

Budweiser Cartersville.

Manufacturing, tourism, and services play a part in the economy of the city. The city's employers include:

Georgia Power
Shaw Industries
, a major flooring manufacturer

The city is home to Cartersville Medical Center and The Hope Center, making it a minor healthcare hub for the surrounding area.


There are two performing arts centers (the Legion Theatre and the Grand Theatre), two theatrical companies (the Pumphouse Players and the Cartersville Opera Company)

Booth Western Art Museum

The Booth Western Art Museum is full of western art and artifacts. Any fan of anything Western will enjoy the Museum.

Lot of sculptures outside.

See an original 1865 stage coach and take a visual ride through the American West at the Booth Western Art Museum.

Prepare yourself for a ride through the American West. In the museum’s permanent collection there are more than 110 works of the best western artist of the 20th century.

There are galleries featuring books and magazines of western stories, and movie posters of Westerns.

There is a gallery of paintings and sculptures dedicated just to the animals of the West.

Another gallery focuses on the art still being made today depicting the heroic tragedy of the Civil War.

See the gallery featuring at least one presidential letter and photograph from each president.

Children ages 2 to 12 will enjoy the Sage Brush Ranch. This gallery features a working ranch with all the structures. Rodeo Joe is your guide to 30 fun filled stations.

There are group tours, family and adult programs, and a need for memberships and volunteers. It is closed on Monday. The location is 501 Museum Drive in downtown Cartersville, GA. (770)387-1300.

Directions: Take Highway 113 off I-75 west to downtown Cartersville. Take a right on Museum Drive before the railroad tracks.

Tellus Museum

The Tellus Science Museum is formally the William Weinman Mineral Museum and is the state's third largest museum with the beautiful room of Gems and gold. It features the first digital planetarium in North Georgia.

Tellus (Northwest Georgia Science Museum)

Located just off I-75 at exit 293, it has four main galleries.

The Weinman Mineral Gallery has 50 cases of gems, gold, and other valued minerals.

The Fossil Gallery shows skeletons of dinosaurs, reptiles, and mammals of all origins.

The Science in Motion Gallery displays man's history of accomplishments when it comes to getting around, electric, steam, and gas powered cars.

It also has a space portion in the gallery.

The Collins Family My Big Back Yard Gallery is filled with children’s experiments with light, sound, magnets, and electricity.

Tellus houses a digital planetarium with a show every 45 minutes.

There is also an observatory and a section where you can pan for minerals.

See the evolution of earth movers.

Looked like someone was having a birthday party.

It is opened every day from 10AM to 5PM, closed Major Holidays. Call 770-606-5700 for prices or membership.

Wrap up on Cartersville.

While you're here at the Allatoona lake, nearby Pine Log WMA (Wildlife Management Area) and Allatoona WMA are great places for off road bike trails and bird watching, especially for the Bachman’s Sparrow.

Pine Log WMA soon to be featured as a GNW.

Notable People

Robert Benham, the first African-American Georgia Supreme Court justice.

Ronnie Brown, Auburn and National Football League (NFL) running back.

Bob Burns (1950–2015), founding member and original drummer of Lynyrd Skynyrd.

Andre Fluellen, FSU and NFL defensive tackle.

W. J. Gordy, potter.

Corra Harris, author.

Joe Frank Harris (1936–), former governor of Georgia.

Keith Henderson, former UGA and NFL running back.

Cledus T. Judd, country music singer.

Wayne Knight (1955–), actor.

Trevor Lawrence, quarterback at Cartersville High School and Clemson University.

Robert Lavette, professional football player.

Chloë Grace Moretz, actress and model.

Donavan Tate, 3rd overall pick chosen by the San Diego Padres in the 2009 Major League Baseball draft. Tate is the son of former UGA and NFL tailback Lars Tate.

Mark Thompson, NASCAR driver. Oldest driver to compete in the Daytona 500.

Benjamin Walker, actor.

Butch Walker (1969–), singer-songwriter and producer.

Hedy West (1938–2005), folk singer and songwriter.

1963 Newport Festival.

Rudy York (1913–1970), professional baseball player.

1946 Tigers.

OK that is a wrap on Cartersville. Today's GNW Gals are all in Covered bridges.

Edited 17 time(s). Last edit at 10/06/2020 07:07AM by Top Row Dawg.

Georgia Natural Wonder #159 - Euharlee Creek - Cartersville (Part 2)

Top Row Dawg284September 21, 2020 06:54AM

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