This section tests your knowledge of Georgia history, including colonization, the effects of major US events on Georgia, Georgia’s role in major US events, and the government of Georgia.
Take a look at these specific concepts you should know.
Muscogee (Creek) Tribe
The Muscogee Creek Tribe was originally located near Macon, Georgia, but English traders began using the term “Creek” to every native person in the deep south. By 1715, there were approximately 10,000 Creek members.
General James Oglethorpe and Georgia colonists arrived to the area already occupied by the Creek tribe in 1733, but the Creek tribe had already established a relationship with the English based on the slave and deer skin trade. The Creek tribe would capture and sell native people living in Florida, but the slave trade eventually gave way to the more lucrative and demanding deer skin trade.
The Creek tribe was known as one of the “Five Civilized Tribes” due to the fact that they adopted much of the English culture, intermarried, and joined the plantation economy that was spreading in the south.
The deerskin trade that the Creeks relied on collapsed after the American Revolution. The state of Georgia pressured the Creeks to give up their lands east of the Ocmulgee River. The United States began a program to make Creeks planters and ranchers. Most Creek people did not want to adopt a new livelihood and resisted the change. The tension between those who wanted to ranch and plant and those who didn’t caused a civil war between the Creek people. This war ended when the U.S. Army became involved. In the Treaty of Fort Jackson, the Creeks were forced to give up 22 million acres of land (a large part of which was in Georgia). Eventually any Creeks remaining in Georgia were removed by the U.S. Army and walked to what is today Oklahoma.
James Oglethorpe (1696-1785)
James Oglethorpe was an English politician who led the settling of Georgia as a British colony. Oglethorpe recognized the problem caused by the number of people in England who were being released from debtor’s prison and those who didn’t have jobs. Oglethorpe suggested to the king that he should start a new colony between South Carolina and Spanish Florida. Oglethorpe believed that this colony would help the unemployment problem in England, but it would also provide a military buffer between the Spanish in Florida and other English colonies.
England approved the new colony in 1732. It was named Georgia after King George II. Oglethorpe envisioned a new type of colony that wasn’t dominated by wealthy landowners, but a colony that would be made up of debtors and unemployed who would own and work on small plots of land. In an effort to keep large plantations from forming, Oglethorpe passed laws that banned slavery, outlawed hard liquor, and limited land ownership to 50 acres.
As the governor of Georgia, Oglethorpe and the first colonists established Savannah as the capital of the colony of Georgia. The colony included public squares, streets in the grid system, and identical houses for settlers. Oglethorpe also built positive relationships with local Native Americans.
Within the first few years of settlement, Georgia was attacked by the Spanish. Oglethorpe asked England for military support. He attacked the Spanish, but was not able to capture St. Augustine. However, he was successful in keeping the Spanish from invading Georgia.
Once Georgia was settled, Oglethorpe went back to England where he was reimbursed for all the personal money he used to establish Georgia. He married, served as a member of Parliament, and continued to monitor the Georgian colony.
Role of Georgia in American Revolution
In the beginning of the American Revolution, Georgia did not play as large of a role as other colonies. This was mostly due to the fact that Georgia was a much newer colony that still had very close ties to England. Even more importantly, colonists in Georgia relied upon British soldiers for protection from the Spanish to the south and Native American tribes in their area.
After the violence at Lexington and Concord, patriots in Georgia stormed the British amory in Savannah and took control of the weapons there. They also attempted to capture Governor James Wright, but he escaped. Georgian patriots took control of Savannah, and many colonists were supportive of the revolution.
In 1778, the British regained control of Savannah. This caused basically a civil war in Georgia between Georgian patriots and loyalists, but Savannah and most of Georgia was controlled by the British until the end of the Revolution.
And that’s some basic info about the United States and Georgia: Historical, Geographic, Economic, and Civic Understanding subarea.