Missing historical markers

Published 1:27 pm Friday, October 9, 2009

Metal historical markers for Fort Hughes and DsSoto Trail are missing!

The Fort Hughes marker stood at the eastern on-ramp for the Calhoun Street Bridge since 1939. Nothing is left but the pole now. Ride by and see.

The Desoto Trail marker was on the southwest corner of Airport Road during the time the Welcome Center was being built and nothing is left there.

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Historical markers such as these are important reminders of the local history. The stories these missing markers reported took place in 1540 and 1817.

The Fort Hughes marker said:

Fort Hughes

“Four blocks west is the site of Fort Hughes, built in 1817, by the 7th Regiment of the U.S. Infantry under the command of Captain John M. McIntosh. This fort served as a protection for foraging parties and as a trading post and U.S. Arsenal during the First Seminole War. A federal Monument marks the site of the fort and is near the grave of Bugler Hughes, who fell in a fight with the Indians November 28, 1817.”

The Desoto Trail marker said:

“Near here De Soto and his army accomplished passage of the Flint (Capachequi) River March 6-10,1540, with difficulty. His Chroniclers wrote that the river was too wide. For ‘the best thrower in the army’ to hurl a stone across it. A barge was built and men and equipment were carried over in a number of trips. The barge was pulled back and forth by strong cables fastened to each end. Horses were forced to swim alongside the barges. This passage is described by men who took part in it.”

The state no longer has the program for placing historical markers, which are not cheap. The Georgia Historical Society and the Historic Chattahoochee Commission do have the ability to have markers made but the cost is in excess of $2,500 each for a double-sided marker.

If anyone knows the whereabouts of these markers it would be a community service to have them returned.

Clayton PenhallegonBainbridge, Ga.