Fort Mountain (Murray County, Georgia)
|Fort Mountain GA|
Fort Mountain, viewed from Chatsworth
|Elevation||2,850 ft (870 m)|
|Prominence||321 ft (98 m)|
|Nearest city||Chatsworth, Georgia|
|Area||211.2 acres (85.5 ha)|
|NRHP reference #||77001587|
|Added to NRHP||November 23, 1977|
Fort Mountain is a mountain in northern Georgia, just east of Chatsworth. It is part of the Cohutta Mountains, a small mountain range at the southern end of the Appalachian Mountains. It also lies within the Chattahoochee National Forest.
Fort Mountain takes its name from a peak that has remnants of a stone formation around part of that peak. The stones, which are from the local area around the summit, are piled in a 928 feet (283 m)-long discontinuous zig-zag line. Stone piles may be formed naturally by the thrust that causes a ridge to crest during the mountain's formation.
Early visitors referred to the formation as a fort, speculating that it was built by Hernando de Soto to defend against the Creek Indians around 1540. However, this theory was contradicted as early as 1917, as a historian pointed out that de Soto was in the area for less than two weeks.
The original construction and function of the formation as a fort is less accepted today and its origin remains unknown. The formation has been attributed to pre-Columbian Native Americans. Early historians attributed the stone piles to a race of moon-eyed people, said to predate the Cherokee. The earliest known mention of this was by Benjamin Smith Barton (1766-1815).
- National Park Service (2010-07-09). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
- Smith, Philip E., "Aboriginal Stone Constructions in the Southern Piedemont", in University Of Georgia Laboratory Of Archaeology Series Report No 4 1962 
- Smith, Philip E., "Aboriginal Stone Constructions in the Southern Piedemont", in University Of Georgia Laboratory Of Archaeology Series Report No 4 1962
- "News from Georgia" Brick and Clay Record Kenfield, Chicago: 1907, Vol. 27, No.3, 99.
- Knight, Lucian Lamar, "Fort Mountain," A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians. Lewis Publishing, Chicago: 1917, Vol. 1, p. 14.