Note: The following is part of a series of columns looking at the founding and general history of southeast Georgia and Bulloch County.
It was recorded in “A Digest of the Laws of the State of Georgia” (1800) that “Drury Jones, Andrew E. Wells, Stephen Denmark, Joseph Rogers and John Cook be…appointed commissioners with full and ample powers,” in Bulloch County.
Their first task: “Erect a Court House and jail (for) the permanent seat (of the government) of Bullock.” Until then, “the courts shall continue to be held, and other public business transacted at the house of William Fletcher.”
According to the digest of 1800, Georgia now had three judicial circuits, and it declared that “the counties of Camden, Glynn, M’Intosh, Liberty, Bryan, Chatham, Effingham and Bullock shall form the eastern circuit.”
It ordered “The justices of the Inferior Court… (are) hereby empowered to levy a tax upon the inhabitants of the said county for the purpose of erecting a court house and gaol (jail) within the same.”
The Inferior Court would have two sessions: “on the first Monday in January in Camden…(and four weeks later) in Bullock,” and the second, “on the first Monday in June in Camden…(and then seven weeks later) in Bullock.”
Shortly thereafter, the schedule was changed so that the Inferior Courts would now meet on specific dates: the sessions would now commence “on the 25th day of July and 27th of December, in Bullock.”
Furthermore, “Superior courts shall be held…twice in every year.” The first would be held “on the first Monday in May, in… Bryan; (and) the Monday thereafter in…Bullock.
The second Superior Court date would be “on the third Monday in November in…Bryan (and) the Monday thereafter in…Bullock.”
When the Constitution of the state of Georgia was written in 1798, Georgia created “A senate and a house of representatives, to be titled “The General Assembly.”
The Georgia Constitution established that Bryan and Bulloch counties were each given one representative, while Chatham, Hancock and Wilkes counties each had four representatives in the General Assembly.
Roger Allen is a local lover of history. Allen provides a brief look each week at the area's past. E-mail Roger at firstname.lastname@example.org.