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Adairsville • Cassville • Cartersville • Euharlee •
Kingston • Lake Allatoona • Summer Hill

145 West Main Street | Cartersville, Georgia
corner of Main and Noble Street

From this corner down to Erwin Street were some of the earliest sites of African American property development. The earliest deed that has been found to a black owner downtown was in 1874 from Josiah Parrott (white) to Jackson Burge, for a lot on West Main Street to the east of Conyers Alley that was later subdivided into several stores. The lot was bordered on the east edge by Henry Saxon’s blacksmith shop, which predated the sale of the lot.

Jackson Burge was among the wealthiest black property owners in Cartersville. Born in 1815 in North Carolina, and enslaved by Nathaniel and Nancy Burge, he was brought with them when they established a plantation in the Stilesboro/ Euharlee area in the decades before the Civil War. On July 20, 1867, he signed an Oath to the Union as a qualified voter residing in the 4th electoral district of Bartow County, and is noted in the 1870 census as a gardener. Burge is not listed as a property owner in 1871, but by 1872, he owned $1,200 of property (over $24,000 in today’s money) which was extraordinary for a black man of the time. The two areas where he owned property were on West Main Street in the downtown business district, and on West Main Street at Lee Street in what became one of the city’s first African American residential districts, West End. He appears to have settled in a neighborhood of wealthy white lawyers and business owners not far from the home of African American grocer John Q. Gassett.

When Jackson Burge died in 1881, he bequeathed to his daughter Angelina Peacock (wife of Robert Peacock) his downtown lot fronting Main Street. He also bequeathed his personal possessions to her “not subject to the debts of her husband” and then to her heirs. This set up Angelina to become a prominent businesswoman in her own right, running a boarding house, a restaurant, and selling the property to John Q. Gassett that allowed for the creation of Gassett’s Grocery.



African American

Heritage Trail

Bartow County, Ga

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