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Bulloch History with Roger Allen: Portal starts as HQ for lumber company
roger allen color Web
Roger Allen

Note: The following is part of a series of columns looking at the founding and general history of southeast Georgia and Bulloch County.

 

Portal, located about 15 miles northwest of Statesboro, was the headquarters of the E.E. Foy Lumber Railroad's northern Bulloch County operations and the site of the Foy Manufacturing Company until 1899.

J. Edgar McCroan set up the first post office in “Old” Portal in 1893, and was the first postmaster.

In 1908, the Georgia Realty Company built “New” Portal alongside the new Savannah, Statesboro, and Northern Railway. 

The “new” post office was opened by Dr. J.K. Hendrix, who was its first postmaster. With the coming of the railroad, “Old” Portal quickly faded into oblivion.

Pretoria, also known as Pretoria Station, was located 4 miles east of Statesboro at the area known as “Five Points” on Burkhalter Road, and was established by Charles Preetorius. It sat alongside the Cuyler and Woodburn Railroad line, which was established in 1896. In 1910, the railroad, now the Savannah and Statesboro Railroad ran passenger trains which stopped at Pretoria Station. 

Proctor sat just above Ivanhoe close to the Bulloch and Bryan County border. Henry J. Proctor set up this little spot’s first post office in his house, and became the only postmaster of Proctor. 

Little is known about the village of Proctoria, mentioned in some old documents. It may have been known to most as Pretoria. 

Pulaski sat on the Dover & Dublin branch of the Central of Georgia Railroad line, 5 miles west of Register. This community was originally known as Strahl, named after Confederate General Otto French Strahl. It was shortly thereafter renamed in honor of Count Casimir Pulaski, the Polish hero of the American Revolution. Leonard and Nancy Franklin built the first house (1885), and he served as its first mayor (1905).

The community of Queen was located northeast of Parish on Lotts Creek, and was lost to Candler County.

Register is a town some 9 miles south of Statesboro at the intersection of Old Register Road and Burkhalter Road. Founder Franklin Pierce Register was a naval stores merchant. 

The new town of Register was built at what was to be a major junction of the Brewton and Pineora Railroad and the Perkins Tram Road (owned by the Perkins Lumber Company).

In 1900 Register reported a population of 276. At its height, Register had a cotton warehouse, cotton gins, public cotton seed and oil markets, as well as saw and grist mills.

 

Roger Allen is a local lover of history. Allen provides a brief look each week at the area's past. E-mail Roger at rwasr1953@gmail.com.

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