Historic Markers Across Georgia

The Second Creek War in Randolph County

Marker ID:  
Location: 51 Court Street, Cuthbert, GA
County: Randolph
Coordinates: N 31° 46.366    W 084° 47.3705
  31.77276666    -84.78950833
Style: Interpretative Sign **
Waymark: None


The Second Creek War in Randolph County
—Creek Heritage Trail —

Located within what had long been Creek territory and containing portions of well-used trails connecting the area with the Seminoles in Florida, Randolph County became an important scene of action during the Second Creek War (1836-38). The war came about after a portion of the angry and desperate Creeks, precariously clinging to the last remnants of their ancestral domain, struck out against American settlements in an effort to resist the certain loss of their homeland. Periodic violence took place in this area long before the outbreak of the war, however, after area Creeks were accused of trespassing and theft of property. When the war broke out following the attack on the nearby town of Roanoke on May 14, 1836, local militia were organized and civilians from the surrounding area flocked to Cuthbert for safety. While most of the fighting would take place to the north and south of Randolph County, several encounters in the area directly affected local communities.

The Battle of Chickasawhatchee (Chickasawhachee) Swamp

American military forces under Generals Thomas Jesup and Winfield Scott began active campaigning in Creek territory in Alabama shortly after the attack on Roanoke. As a result, several bands of Creeks attempted to flee the area by crossing the Chattahoochee into Georgia and making their way south to join the Seminoles in northern Florida using trails through Randolph County. In June of 1836, following a running series of battles a few miles to the north in Stewart County, fleeing Creeks shot a man near Cuthbert, then killed several area families as they made their way down the west bank of Chickasawhatchee Creek. The group was pursued southward by troops under the command of Captain Henry W. Jernigan and Colonel Thomas Beall. On July 3rd a sharp fight took place in the swamps of the Chickasawhatchee near what is now the border of Randolph and Terrell Counties. In about a half an hour, at least a dozen Creeks were killed and American forces sustained seven casualties. In capturing the Creeks’ camp and their supplies, Beall and Jesup’s men also laid claim to arguably the first major American victory of the war.

Photo captions
Left side map Western Georgia at the outbreak of the Creek War, from an 1836 map by Henry S. Tanner
Left middle map From The Second Creek War: Interethnic Conflict and Collusion on a Collapsing Frontier, by John T. Ellisor
A historic marker commemorating the battle stands along Georgia Highway 37 in
Baker County.
Right middle A stone monument placed by the Daughters of the American Revolution in 1912 stands near the site of the battle just outside of Dawson on Old Field Road in Terrell County. Historic markers commemorating the battle, placed by the state in the 1950s, stand along Highway 82 at the junction of County Road 41 (left) in Randolph County and along West Lee Street (Cherry Cola Road) outside of Dawson (right).
Bottom right This painting, entitled "Last Indian Troubles in Randolph County-1836" and currently located in the Cuthbert Post Office, reputedly depicts fighting in the Randolph County
area during the Second Creek War. The scene is not literal, however, and was likely based on a combination of historic events that occurred in the region. It was painted by Carlo Ciampaglia in 1939 as a part of the Federal Art Project.

Erected 2015 by the Historic Chattahoochee Commission and the Randolph County Historical Society.

A photo of this marker can be found on HMDB.org