WHAT WOULD IT BE LIKE TO LIVE DURING THE 1800’S IN SOUTH GEORGIA

 

Have you ever wanted to go back in time and live in a small town in the south,
where things have not changed in decades?Hazlehurst GA Dr Samuel Martin House Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2014

What would it be like to be back in the 1800’s? Would we be saying that we are bored and that there is nothing to do? No I do not think that would be the case. We would be so busy making our own clothes, raising and nurturing the children while the men were off taking care of other things, and also making their own soaps so they can be used to bathe with and wash their dishes and clothes. We would have no need for over a dozen types of laundry/ hair / bath soaps. We would wash our clothes on a scrub board or against rocks. We would not bath daily because there would be no time and we would be so tired from the days labor that after cleaning up the supper dishes we went to bed to start our day all over again. Some things remain the same as it was in the 1800’s. Alcohol was for bidden in Georgia and in our small GA town it is not sold in restaurants or bars.

The history of Georgia is one of the most turbulent of any states in North America. Georgia history includes numerous battles and events. From the days of Native American rule and Georgia colonial history to the present day, Georgia state history can be both colorful and fascinating. Travelers to Georgia may find that a cursory look at the history of Georgia can add depth to travels throughout the state.

For thousands of years, Native American tribes ruled many of the areas now known as the state of Georgia. European settlers entered into Georgia history beginning in the sixteenth century, when Spanish explorers first made their way to the south. It would not be until late in the seventeenth century that British settlers would begin arriving, and the European contest for control of Georgia would begin. The history of Georgia goes on to reflect that British settlers eventually gained control of the area and started an official colony. Interestingly, many of the first British settlers, concentrated in Savannah, were hand-selected by the British government.

Georgia was established on strict moralistic principles. Slavery was forbidden, as was alcohol and other forms of supposed immorality. However, the reality of the colony was far from ideal. The colonists were unhappy about the puritanical lifestyle and complained that their colony could not compete economically with the Carolina rice plantations. Georgia initially failed to prosper, but eventually the restrictions were lifted, slavery was allowed, and it became as prosperous as the Carolinas. The colony of Georgia never had a specific religion. It consisted of people of varied faiths.

The government had made a philanthropic gesture to some of the country’s debtors by sending them west and forgiving their debts.

Georgia colonial history went on to include the colony’s part in the Revolutionary War, when the thirteen colonies of the new world revolted against the British crown. Although Georgia colonial history during this war saw all thirteen colonies acting in accordance with one another, Georgia history goes on to show that Georgia would later join the Confederacy in a bid to separate from the northern colonies.

The Civil War was a major defining moment for Georgia state history, and many believe that the repercussions of that war can still be felt in parts of Georgia to this day. Fought for economic reasons and over the issue of slavery, the Civil War saw the destruction of many of Georgia’s most prominent cities and plantations. The famous March to the Sea, led by General William Sherman, cut a path of fire and destruction from Atlanta to Savannah. Buildings were burned to the ground all along the way, including farms, homes and businesses and throwing the area into a state of total economic disrepair. This event inspired to famous novel, Gone with the Wind. It would not be until 1870, far into the reconstruction period, that Georgia would be the last Confederate state to be readmitted to the new Union and join the United States of America.
Although Georgia state history has seen its share of strife, the Georgia of today is full of fascinating historical sites and is wonderful place to visit. Festivals and events in Georgia, as well as the general warmth of the people who inhabit its cities, make Georgia well worth a stop on any trip to the south.
THE WOMEN OF THE SOUTH
When married, an English woman lost her maiden name and personal identity, meaning she could not own property,{Mrs. Abigail Adams help to have this changed while her husband was in the office of the President of the United States} to this file lawsuits, or participate in political life, even when widowed. The role of wives was to raise and nurture healthy children and support their husbands. Most women carried out these duties. In the mid-18th century, women usually married in their early 20s and had 6 to 8 children, most of whom survived to adulthood. Farm women provided most of the materials needed by the rest of the family by spinning yarn from wool and knitting sweaters and stockings, making candles and soap, and churning milk into butter.

Most of the time there was no time for bathing and they did not realize the need do to disease and germs. The woman wore layers of clothing which started off with a chemise, which is like a cotton nightgown and pantaloons as undergarments, Then they had corsets and camisoles over that and a slip with the hoop in or with a hoop over it, then they had a hoop skirt to cover the hoop or bustles and another skirt plus a bodice over the camisole and either a short waist coat or fishu, a vest like shawl. With all this clothing it is no wonder they were doused in oils to help hide the smell. There hair was pasted down with oils and curled at the ends but a lace cap was on during the day or snoods, which are hair ornaments, and bonnets. I know I would love to be able to be from that era due to the gowns but not the hard work and the lack of hygiene. What would your life be like if you were from the 1800’s? Have you ever thought about it. I know my grandparents & my mom  were sharecroppers growing up and that is how they made there income many times to help supplement my grandfathers job & his small farm.  Have you ever thought what your life would be like if you lived in the 1800’s?

This is just one style of home from the 1800’s.  This home is the 1835 Irwin Plantation Home in Douglas GA. This is about 40 minute drive south of where I live now.
Railroad engineer and Civil War veteran George H. Hazlehurst was instrumental in building rail systems throughout the South.  Georgia, his home state, was no exception. Colonel Hazlehurst, as he was known, became president of the Macon & Brunswick Railroad in 1865. From Macon, Colonel Hazlehurst and his crew began construction of a line southeastward toward Brunswick. From Brunswick, another of Colonel Hazlehurst’s crews began carving a line northwestward. On September 23, 1869, the two crews met and connected the rails halfway between the two cites. The crews celebrated the completion of the rail and christened the spot where the lines met as Mile Post 8-1/2. This would later become Hazlehurst. A depot soon arose, and regularly scheduled train service on the new tracks was placed into operation in 1870. Hazlehurst thus had its very early origins as a rail town.Macon-Brunswick RailroadLike most small town railroad Depots they have  not been used in years and have many other ways to ship  their crops & supplies.  But the original location is marked by a historical sign marker at the 8 1/2 mile post.  This is the town that I had moved to about 7 years ago and in many ways it still has its small town charm and still has restrictions on selling alcohol in restaurants & we do not have a liquor store in our county to this day.  
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