County History

Polk County, created on December 20, 1851, by legislative act and named for President James K. Polk, is located in the Coosa Valley area of Northwest Georgia. Prior to the 1830's legend has it the area was prized by both the Creek and Cherokee Indian camps due to a large, natural limestone spring, known as the Big Spring, so ownership was settled by a game of ball which the Cherokees won. The Cherokees established a village named "Charley Town" in the western part of what was to become Polk County.

In 1838 Cherokee possession came to an end as President Andrew Jackson decreed that the Cherokee nation would be forcibly relocated to Oklahoma. A containment camp, called Cedar Town, was established near the Big Spring. This encampment became the southernmost camp for the forced roundup and removal of the Cherokees to Oklahoma on what became known as the "Trail of Tears".

The War Between the States came to Polk County near the end of the war when Kilpatrick's Calvary burned the Courthouse and numerous buildings in Cedartown, now the county seat. About the same time a wing of the Union Army of Tennessee swept through eastern Polk and engaged in a minor skirmish near Van Wert Church.

Polk County survived reconstruction and developed industrial mining of hematite iron ore in the western part of the county and mining of slate in the eastern portion. After the turn of the century cotton farming became king and industrial giants like Goodyear and Julliard came and constructed mills where local cotton was loomed into thread and fabric.

Today, Polk County has a diversified economy with modern industrial parks in both Cedartown and Rockmart. Four lane US 278 runs east and west in the county, and four lane US27 runs north and south. The highly popular Silver Comet Trail for hiking and biking runs from the eastern boundary at Paulding to the western boundary at the Alabama state line.