A Brief History of Dewsville, Baker County

The town of Dewsville was established around a turpentine operation which employed many people. In the 1880s Dewsville thrived and had a fairly large population. Dewsville sported a general store run by Mr. William W. Dews, who also served as the first postmaster. The post office was established in 1884 and by its completion another store had been built in town. At it’s height Dewsville had a known population of 1,000 people, now it has roughly 200. After the turpentine plant closed many moved out of the area to better factory jobs in nearby Leary, Calhoun County. I can remember my grandfather taking about Dewsville, but it’s hard to pinpoint the exact location of where the post office and stores once sat. Dewsville today is completely rural and consists of mostly farmland and farming families.

New Oak Grove Free Will Baptist Church, Dewsville, Baker County

New Oak Grove Free Will Baptist Church, Dewsville, Baker County

Oak Grove Baptist Church was moved from it’s former location in Crestview to Dewsville where it became a Free Will Baptist Church. It is a Black church with a fairly small congregation. Burials are usually done at the old church site in Oak Grove Baptist Cemetery.

New Evergreen Church, Dewsville, Baker County

New Evergreen Church, Dewsville, Baker County

I have hardly any information on this church, I’m not even sure if it was attended by a Black or White congregation (usually even when all church records are lost locals can identify which race attended), or its denomination. It looks to have been abandoned for many years. I was met with a large honey bee hive upon my entrance! (Private Property)

Inside New Evergreen Chruch

Inside…

Ichauway Nochaway Creek, Dewsville, Baker County

Ichauway Nochaway Creek, Dewsville, Baker County

The Ichauway Nochaway is the largest creek in the county and flows for about twenty miles from the northern part of the county to the Flint River near the Decatur County line. Some people say that the name of the creek means ‘this a way, that a way” in the Creek language, however the name of the creek in Creek is really Sleeping Buck Creek. I must note that the creek is considered ‘non-navigable’ and is privately owned in sections. In my personal opinion it is, but it’s still not a good idea to boat up and down it without permission. (Private Property)

Abandoned Creek House

Old Stairs

Itchaway-Nochaway Creek

 

Former Site of Pine Hill School, Dewsville, Baker County

Former Site of Pine Hill School, Dewsville, Baker County

Pine Hill School was a White school which closed in 1927 when it merged with another local White school. It is estimated to have been built between 1893 and 1899. The site can be clearly viewed off of Hudson Road near the intersection of Milford Road. (Private Property)

Baker County Power Company Dam, Dewsville, Baker County

Baker County Power Company Dam, Dewsville, Baker County

Baker County’s largest structural and financial endeavor The Baker County Power Company Dam once supplied power to most of South West Georgia for many years. The hydro-electric dam was built in 1920 at a cost of $500,000. The dam finally fell out of commission when the creek bed began to crack and the water began to leek into the cavern systems below. An interesting local legend is that the dam failed due to a voodoo curse put on it by a Black lady in revenge for the Power Company building on her favorite fishing spot. My grandparents and their friends used the dam as a swimming hole. Though the dam is an interesting sight, I would HIGHLY advise against trespassing here. Ichauway Plantation owns the land and they are VERY observant of what goes on around it. (PRIVATE PROPERTY-AGAIN PLEASE DO NOT TRESPASS ON ICHAUWAY.)

Danger Cross River Boys Sign

Notice the sign “Danger Cross-River Boys”, this was a local gang of kids that used the dam as a meeting site. They were known to jump off of one side of the dam, swim underneath it, and emerge to the other side as a party trick.

Wash

The creek was low upon my visit, leading to this interesting wash.