Henry County, Georgia, was so-named to honor the American Patriot Patrick Henry. The County was created on May 21, 1821 by an act of the state legislature and approved by Governor John Clark on Christmas Eve later that year. 

At the time of the Revolution, the settled portion of Georgia consisted of a narrow strip of territory along the seaboard and the Savannah River, which had been ceded by the Indians in three treaties in 1733, 1763 and 1773. During the Revolutionary War, the Indians sided with the British. As punishment, in 1783 they were forced to cede lands lying about the sources of the Oconee River. In 1789, a treaty surrendering all claim to the land east of the Oconee River, was made. In 1802, Georgia ceded the Western territory between the Chattahoochee and the Mississippi to the National Government binding itself to remove the Indians from Georgia. Under this agreement small cessions were obtained, extending the boundary of Georgia to the Ocmulgee River.

 Henry County's land was acquired in the first Treaty of Indian Springs which was signed by government officials J. McIntosh, David Adams, Daniel Newman, William McIntosh, and Creek Nation representatives Tustunnugee Hopoie and E. Fau Emauthau. The agreement was signed at the Creek capital, Indian Springs in present Butts County on January 8, 1821. The Creeks ceded all land between the Ocmulgee and Flint rivers, north and west of previous cessions, with the exception of a reservation of 1,000 acres around the Springs, a tract around the agency, which should have become the property of the United States when the agency was removed, and 640 acres on the West bank of the Ocmulgee to include the improvements of the Chief General McIntosh.

The area was then opened for legal settlement by Georgia citizens. Four other counties aside from Henry were created from this territory by the same legislative act; Fayette, Monroe, Houston and Dooly. Twenty-one additional counties were subsequently formed out of these original five. Henry County, as first surveyed, was almost seventy miles in its greatest length and width and included all or parts of the present counties of Newton (created in 1821, partly from the older counties of Jasper and Walton), Dekalb (created in 1822 and from which Fulton County, including the city of Atlanta, was formed in 1853), Butts (created in 1825), Spalding (created in 1851), Clayton (created in 1858), and Rockdale (created in 1870). A portion of Henry County, now lying in Clayton, was added to Fayette County in 1822.

 On Dec 17 1823 McDonough was incorporated in honor of Commodore Thomas McDonough, hero of the Battle of Lake Champlain in the War of 1812. By 1827 McDonough contained a brick courthouse in the Public Square and a two-story brick building for the Henry County Academy. It also boasted its own post office, as well as a number of stores, mechanic shops, several taverns and inns, and Baptist, Methodist and Presbyterian churches. The town was a relay station on the New York to New Orleans stagecoach line, and was connected by other stage lines with Fayetteville and Decatur, and with Macon by way of Jackson. Two additional stagecoach routes passed through the county which connected Fayetteville with Jackson and Macon, and Fayetteville with Decatur. Henry County is rich in history and culture. There are beautiful homes and scenic landscapes all just a few miles away from Atlanta.

BOOKS -  Henry County, GA

LEGISLATION - Land & Deeds In Henry Co, GA

LEGISLATION - Henry County Formation & Boundary Changes 

LEGISLATION  - Election Districts In Henry County

LEGISLATION - Mail Routes In Henry County

LEGISLATION - Medical Board

LEGISLATION -  Railroads in Henry County

LEGISLATION  - Incorporating Shearer Mineral Springs, Henry Co., GA - 1840

Surveyor General's Office - 1821

University of Georgia Courthouse Website - with links to other historical information & maps

National Register of Historic Places in Henry Co., Ga.

Political Graveyard Site - Linked to Henry Co., Ga Info

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This page was last updated on -01/19/2021
Compilation Copyright 2002- Present

By Linda Blum-Barton - All Rights Reserved