Rome, Georgia - Encyclopedia

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ROME, a city and the county-seat of Floyd county, in the N.W. part of Georgia, U.S.A., at the junction of the Etowah and Oostanaula rivers, which here form the Coosa. Pop. (1900) 7291, of whom 2830 were negroes; (1910) 12,099. It is served by the Central of Georgia, the Western & Atlantic (leased by the Nashville, Chattanooga & St Louis), the Southern and the Rome & Northern railways, and the Coosa river is navigable from this point to the falls of the river in Alabama. The city is the seat of Shorter College (for women), which was established in 1873 as the Cherokee Female College, and received its present name in 1877, when it was rebuilt and endowed by Colonel Alfred Shorter; and of the Berry Industrial School (1902), for mountain boys. Rome is situated in a rich agricultural region producing cotton, cereals, vegetables and fruits, for which it is a trading centre, and is a shipping point for bauxite, mined in the vicinity. Other mineral products of this region are iron, limestone, cement rock, fire-brick clay, coal, slate and marble. Rome's principal manufactures are cotton, cotton-seed oil, lumber, foundry and machine-shop products, bricks and agricultural implements. Its site was originally within the territory of the Cherokee, and on the other side of the Oostanaula river there is said to have been at one time an Indian village, which, like several other Creek villages, was called Chiaha (or Chehaw). Here, in October 1793, in his Etowah campaign, John Sevier, with militia from Tennessee, crushed a party of marauding Indians; the battle is commemorated by a monument in Myrtle Hill cemetery. Floyd county was erected in 1833. The first settlement of Rome was made in 1834, and immediately afterwards it became the county-seat. Rome was first chartered as a city in 1847. In 1863 there were brilliant cavalry manoeuvres in its vicinity, which resulted in the capture (May 3) of Colonel Abel D. Streight (Federal) with 1800 men by General Nathan B. Forrest (Confederate), with a force one-third the size of that of his opponent. On the 19th of May 1864 the city was captured by a detachment of the Federal Army of General William T. Sherman, then conducting his Atlanta campaign. In 1848-75 Rome was the home of Charles Henry Smith (1826-1903), a popular humorist, who wrote under the name "Bill Arp." In 1906 East Rome (pop. 671 in 1900) and North Rome (pop. 960 in 1900), which was formerly called Forestville, were annexed to the city.

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