Tommy H Jones, 2017




Atlanta's Ancient Trails

Mapping Atlanta's Early Trails

Sources of Information





Three primary sources of information have been especially important for this study: historic maps, county records, and the State's land surveys. The most important set of maps for documenting early roads are those in The Atlas to Accompany the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies (U.S. Department of War, 1895), containing nine plates with excellent detail on roads that existed in and around Atlanta in 1864. Nineteenth-century Fulton, DeKalb, and Henry County land records have been consulted, and the minutes of Inferior Court of Henry and Dekalb Counties, which authorized public roads and bridges in the early years of the area's development. Most useful has been the data contained in the State of Georgia's original survey of county land districts that was conducted before each of the State's eight lotteries used to distribute public land. An exceptionally detailed survey was made of the Seventeenth District, which includes what is now the City of Atlanta north of Eighth Street as well as Sandy Springs, and it has been the focus of the present study.


Public Records

DeKalb County, Inferior Court, Minutes, 1823-1853. Microfilm, Georgia Archives.

DeKalb County, Superior Court, Record of Deeds and Mortgages, 1843-1853. Microfilm, Georgia Archives.

Fulton County, Superior Court, Record of Deeds and Mortgages, 1853-1890. Fulton County Courthouse and on microfilm, Georgia Archives.

State of Georgia, Records of the State's Surveyor General, Record Group 003-03-024, District Surveys, 1821, Georgia Archives.

United States, Federal Census, 1820-1940.



Early, Eleazar. Map of the State of Georgia. Savannah: 1818.

Kauffman, I. U. Kauffman's Map of the Borough of Atlanta and Adjacent Territory, with annotations by Franklin Garrett. The Atlanta Historical Bulletin I, no. 8 (1934).

Koch, Augustus. Bird's Eye View of Atlanta, Fulton County, Georgia, State Capital, 1892. Saunders and Kline, 1892.

Phillips, William. Map of Fulton County, Georgia, 1872. Georgia Department of Archives and History.

Ruger, Albert. Birds Eye View of the City of Atlanta, The Capitol [sic] of Georgia, 1871. St. Louis, MO: 1872.

United States, Army of the Cumberland, Topographical Engineers Office. Atlanta : from Vincent's subdivision map, published by the City Council. Chattanooga TN: 1864.

___________, United States Geological Service (USGS), various maps, 1889-2014. \

___________, Atlanta, Georgia, quadrant, U. S. Geological Survey, surveyed in 1887-1888, edition of Sept 1895, reprinted June 1900. (scanned from author's collection)

___________, Department of War, Atlas to Accompany the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, (Washington DC: 1895).

Vincent, Edward. Vincent's subdivision map of the city of Atlanta, Dekalb County, state of Georgia : showing all the lots, blocks, sections, &c., published in Savannah, GA., 1853. Library of Congress, Geography and Map Division.


Published Sources

Barnwell, Hanleiter, et. al., Atlanta City Directory, facsimile copies, 1867, 1870-72, 1874-1875, 1877-1878, 1881, 1891-1892, 1896-1899, 1902-1908, 1913-1914, 1916, 1919, 1921-1923, accessed online at onlinedirectorysite/Home/usa/ga/fulton.

Cooper, Walter G. History of Fulton County. Atlanta, GA: W. W. Brown, 1934, reprint 1978.

Crimmins, Timothy J. "The Atlanta Palimpsest: Stripping Away the Layers of the Past," The Atlanta Historical Journal 26, No. 2-3 (Summer/Fall 1982).

D'Angelo, James J. "A New Take on an Old Story: Fort Daniel, Fort Peachtree, and the Road that Connected them. " The Heritage 42. no. 3. Gwinnett County Historical Society.

____ "The Original Peachtree Road and Why It Was Built." History. Web. 12 September 2017.

DeVorsey, Louis."Indian Trails." New Georgia Encyclopedia. Accessed on line at, 5 April 2014.

Doyle, Tony. "The Standing Peachtree," at, accessed 19 November 2013.

Flanagan, James C. History of Gwinnett County Georgia 1818-1943 Vol. 1. Lawrenceville, GA: 1943, facsimile reprint by Alice Flanagan, 1995.

Garrett, Franklin. Atlanta and Environs, 2 Vols. (University of Georgia Press, 1954).

____________. "A Short History of Land Lots 105 and 106 of the 17th District of Fulton County, Georgia" in two parts. The Atlanta Historical Journal 27, No. 1-2 (Spring and Summer, 1983).

Goff, John H. Placenames of Georgia. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, 1975.

_________. "The Hightower Trail," The Collections of the DeKalb Historical Society 1. Decatur: Ga, 1951.

_________. "Path to Oakfuskee, Upper Trading Route in Georgia to the Creek Nation," Georgia Historical Quarterly 39, No. 1. Savannah, GA: 1955.

_________. "The Sandtown Trail," The Atlanta Historical Bulletin 11, no. 4 (December 1966).

Hemperly, Marion R. "Major Indian Trails in Georgia." Map, Georgia Department of Archives and History, 1979.

______________ Historic Indian Trails of Georgia. Atlanta, GA: Garden Club of Georgia, 1989.

Hudgins, Carl T. "DeKalb County Indian Trails," The Collections of the DeKalb Historical Society Vol. 1. Decatur, GA, 1951.

Hudson, Angela Pulley. Creek Paths and Federal Roads: Indians, Settlers, and Slaves and the Making of the American South. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 2010.

Klima, Don. "Breaking Out: Streetcars and Suburban Development, 1872-1900," in Urban Structure, Atlanta, The Atlanta Historical Journal 26, no. 2-3 (Summer/Fall 1982).

Kurtz, Wilbur G. "Standing Peachtree," Early Georgia 1, no. 5 (Fall 1950): 31-42.

Lane, Mills, ed. The Rambler in Georgia: Desultory Observations on the Situation, Extent, Climate, Population, Manners, Customs, Commerce, Constitution, Government, etc., of the State from the Revolution to the Civil War Recorded by Thirteen Travelers. Savannah, GA: Beehive Press, 1973.

Meyer, William Edward. "Indian Trails of the Southeast," Forty-second Annual Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology to the Secretary of the Smithsonian, 1924-1925, pp. 727-854. Washington, D.C.: United States Government Printing Office, 1928.

Mitchell, Eugene M. "The Story of the Standing Peachtree," The Atlanta Historical Bulletin I no. 2 (January 1928): 8-19.

Newton, Milton B. Jr. "Relic Roads of East Feliciana Parish, Louisiana," Geographical Review. Vol. 61, No. 2 (April, 1971), 250 -264.

Price, Vivian. The History of DeKalb County, Georgia, 1822-1900. Fernandina Beach, FL: Wolfe Publishing Co., 1997.