Historic Markers Across Georgia

The Couey House

Marker ID:  
Location: located in J. R. "Dick" Dowdy Park on University St at E. Washington St, Summerville, GA.
County: Chattooga
Coordinates: N 34° 28.756    W 085° 20.762
  34.47926666    -85.34603333
Style: Interpretative Sign **
Waymark: WMC99E
The Couey House Marker  


Built in the early 1840s Andrew McSelland Couey, this log house was one of the earliest pioneer homes and Chattooga County. As the land was cleared, the house was constructed of huge logs which were hoisted into place in carved into half dovetail ends as the house was erected. The house was restored to this site as it was considered to be a significant representation of the craftsmanship and lifestyle of the early pioneers in this area of north Georgia.

Originally, the house was located nearly seven miles from this site in Dirt Town Valley near Tidings, Georgia. As the home of the family of Andrew and Fereby Couey, the house was once surrounded by a profitable 400 acre farm which produced corn, cotton and livestock. As with many southern homes, the War Between the States brought much hardship and Union soldiers passed through the area and depleted supplies.

In addition to the loss of material goods, the inhabitants of the Couey House suffered greatly during the War Between the States with the death of their son Andrew Jackson Couey in Virginia on November 1, 1861. Like most Chattooga County men, Couey fought with the Confederate Army. His death and all to the county's loss of life and livelihood particularly ironic, since its humble county with very few slave holders had voted against succession from the union at the succession convention held in Milledgeville, Georgia on January 19, 1861. The Couey younger son, Eli Couey, also joined Company B., Knight Georgia Infantry, served throughout the war, and was present at the surrender Appomattox, Virginia on April 9, 1865.

Also known as the Couey-Owings-Knowles House, this historic structure was the home of Andrew Couey until his death in 1882. Later, in 1904, it became the home of Couey's granddaughter, Flora Couey, who married William H. Owings. After the farm was subdivided and sold over the following decades, the house was last owned by Billy Knowles prior to being acquired by the Georgia Department of Transportation. Due to the widening of US Highway 27, the original site of the Couey House was needed. The relocation to Dowdy Park in Somerville was begun in 1995 and, though modern additions to the house had been added, only the original log structure was moved.

Heroic efforts of the Summerville fire Department say the house from complete loss in 2005. As the house was once again restored, the preacher porch was removed to allow the front porch to the open across the full width of the structure. This return the façade to the appearance of the early 1900s as remembered by Chattooga County Historian, Robert S. Baker, descendent of the Couey family and author of Chattooga the Story of a County and its people.

Since 1998, the house has been maintained by the city of Somerville as an example of the historic preservation and for the enjoyment and education to all who visit the site. The Chattooga County Historical Society has continued to assist with the preservation and furnishing the house is well as with the documentation of the history surrounding it.

The Couey House
The Couey House


More information:
Wikipedia - Slavery
Allince87 - Modern Slavery
Wikipedia - Act Prohibiting Importation of Slaves
Wikipedia - Emancipation Proclamation
Wikipedia - Thirteenth Amendment