Saturday, August 29, 2015

Chalybeate Mineral Springs

The strange-looking stream of water coming from the spring in this old wall is chalybeate water, colored orange by the iron in it. These mineral springs were thought to be healthy. The stated cures were for everything from colic to brain moisture, strangely enough. People traveled from miles away to drink it and bathe in it. The old wall is on private property in the woods of the old Cohutta Springs community, off of Cohutta Springs Road in Crandall, Georgia. The springs are near the ruins of the old hotel and mill, of which there is little left but the chimneys.

Saturday, May 17, 2014


Fresh spring water pouring over a waterwheel is such a pretty sight. It brings a feeling of nostalgia for the old days. I always wish I could have seen the old Cohutta Springs mill when water still flowed over the wheel.  The historic grist mill at Cohutta Springs is no longer there; but at one time, it brought people for miles around. They came, not just to grind corn or wheat, but to hear good music and dance! The top floor of the mill was a dance hall. Across from it, and connected by a walkway, were the old resort and mineral springs. The site of the old mill was in North Georgia, near a town now called Crandall.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Spring Water Memories

Remembering the late 1960s and early '70s, people in Murray County and round about still loved to take a gallon jug and dip water out of a clear spring. There were several springs in Murray and surrounding counties. Our family often went to Ringgold, in Catoosa County, and while there, we would get several gallons of water from the spring. It was so clear and cold. There were periwinkles in the spring (tiny freshwater mollusks with black spiral shells), and we children loved to find them and play with them. Mother would scold if we got too close to the source. She made us go further downstream so as not to play in the drinking water. We also picked watercress, which we loved to eat (mixed with garden lettuce and spring onions, pouring bacon grease over them in those naive glory days of good eating).

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Remembering the Old Mill

It's hard to remember my first glimpse of Cohutta Springs (the old community). My father and his people were from Murray County. About once a year or so, around Thanksgiving, we would travel into Murray on our way up to Conasauga, Tennessee, to see Dad's uncle and cousins. They lived in an old unpainted house ~ one of those picturesque primitive cabins, complete with outhouses, that people like to recall in their travels through the South. On our way up there, Dad would stop by the old house where his grandfather used to live. It was in the old Adair community and is falling down now. We also went to see the old Coffey grist mill in the Cohutta Springs community. We had to cross a little flat bridge that was made of thick, wooden beams. The outside of the mill was shingled in thick wooden slabs that I thought very pretty. The bridge was still strong and the mill seemed like it would be there forever, I thought. A few years later, we visited it for the last time. It was dilapidated by then, and boards were already starting to fall into the creek.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Cohutta Springs History

Cohutta Springs History tells the story of a small, historical community in Murray County, Georgia. Cohutta Springs was once famous for its many mineral springs. The history of the little community dates back to the time of the Cherokee Nation. In fact the place name itself derived from the Cherokee. The word "Cohutta" derived from the sound of a Cherokee name, similar to "ga-hut-yi" or "gahuti," as it was pronounced. It was the word for poles of a shed, and referred to the nearby mountains ~ the poles of the shed that held up the sky. Come along as we explore Cohutta Springs and other old communities of Murray County...

The Other Cohutta Springs

Cohutta Springs is on old maps in several places. The "other" Cohutta Springs is west of the one we've talked about. It's in the Tenth District, Third Section of Murray County, on Georgia Highway 225, and is better known as "Colvard's." The place name of Cohutta Springs came about because there were several mineral springs. Their source was the nearby Cohutta Mountains. The springs became popular as watering places. Boarding houses and resorts sprang up in the area. Little towns began to be named for the springs. Post offices opened and closed nearby. As one or the other area became frequented by residents and tourists, the place names began to appear on maps. The main part of this site explores the Cohutta Springs resort area that sits right at the foot of Grassy Mountain (just off of U.S. Highway 411 in Crandall, Georgia). The other Cohutta Springs (or Colvard's) is in the northwestern part of Murray County, on Georgia Highway 225. Old Doc Colvard once owned a plantation there. The antebellum plantation (privately owned) still sits at the crossroads there. The wellspring is gone. Earlier owners of the plantation were Waterhouse and McCroskey. It was never famous, but it was mentioned here and there in Civil War correspondence. That area was more prominent in census (because of the early post office there), so genealogists will do well to take a look at it. We'll explore that "other" Cohutta Springs as we travel through Murray County's history. To get a better idea of these various areas, take a look at our Maps page.

Area Businesses

Businesses in the Cohutta Springs area include some farms, a greenhouse, and a conference center. The ones that come to mind right away are: Cohutta Springs Conference Center, a retreat center owned by the Georgia Cumberland Conference of Seventh Day Adventists. The Conference Center is in Crandall, Georgia. Its owner, the GCC, is headquartered in Calhoun, Georgia. The Conference Center is available for church, business, school, and family retreats. (These should be planned in advance, of course). There's a working farm in the area. It is Holcomb's farm, I believe (I'll get more information and clarify this, as soon as possible). Another business is Cohutta Springs Greenhouse. There used to be a winery, but it may not be there anymore. The building is still there. There is a post office (Crandall, Georgia) and a nearby convenience store. Fairy Baptist Church is about a mile north of Cohutta Springs Road on the main highway (US 411). Fairy is the placename of another little community that used to be a town. There are cemeteries and other places of interest nearby ~ these will be explored further in the blog at large. The Cohutta Springs area is about four miles north of Eton, Georgia; seven miles north of Chatsworth, Georgia; and twenty or so miles east (northeast) of Dalton, Georgia. It's about a thirty-minute drive south from Cleveland, Tennessee. Maps (old and new) are available on the map section of this site. As I find out more specifics on the businesses in the area, I'll add and update information and links.