Representatives of various historic groups, including representatives of the Walker County Historic Preservation Commission, the local United Daughters of the Confederacy and the Daughters of the American Revolution, as well as a task force of leading citizens, had been meeting for many months to find a mechanism for obtaining the Marsh House property to preserve it for future generations.
The community task force worked to arrange financing though the Bank of LaFayette and the Cohutta Bank. A large number of local citizens signed guaranty statements with the banks for the loan. Sub-groups of the community task force include the Site Review Committee, Fred Henry and Clayton Bell, co-chairmen; a Short-term Planning and Assessment Committee, Maurice McConnell and David Boyle, co-chairmen; and a Long-range Vision Committee, Evelle Dana, chair.
These committees will be working over the next few months to assure progress toward long-term plans for the facility.
Clayton Bell, president of the Walker County Historical Society, said the process of preserving the historic site has just begun.
“We will need community-wide hearings to develop a long-range vision, and we will need the help of every citizen and civic group from the Rotary Club to the Girls Scouts and 4-H Clubs,” Bell said. “There will be plenty of work for everyone.”
David Boyle, vice president of the Walker County Historical Society, drafted a 10-year proposed development plan to serve as a context for developing the community-wide conversation about what types of restoration and programs could best serve Walker County.
Community-wide meetings will soon be organized to gain input into the possibilities of the property, which is widely recognized as one of the finest examples of antebellum architecture in north Georgia. Future possibilities might include a house museum, an anchor for a historic quarter and a major tourist destination.
Submitted by Walker County Historical Societ