Oxford Tree-Ring Laboratory - Georgia


Baber Log House

Baber Log House, Georgia (33.982001, -83.380230)

Primary Phase of House         Felling Dates: Winter 1790/1

Repair Phase         Felling Dates: Winter 1830/31

Site Master 1718-1790 BLGAx1 (dates as part of area master Georgia1). Site Master 1767-1830 BLGAx2 (t= 7.22 UNAR; 5.76 TN016; 5.75 GA012).

The Baber Log House, also known as the Baber- Bridges House is, as it turns out, the oldest structure studied in the project, or at least the oldest that can be dated. It had previously been dated about 1805 because at that date Ambrose Baber, from Virginia, had bought the land on which it stood from James Holt. The land was near Mack’s Creek in northern Oglethorpe County, part of what was known as the Goose Pond settlement, after another nearby tributary of the Broad River. The Goose Pond, or Broad River settlement, represented a major influx of early settlers from Virginia during the 1780s and 1790s, all along the Broad River and its tributaries in what was then Wilkes Country, but later became Wilkes, Oglethorpe, Madison, and Elbert Counties. In fact, the house is one of only two surviving Goose Pond houses (neither on their original sites), the other one being the Gilmer House, now at Callaway Plantation in Wilkes County. Patricia Cooper, one of the foremost experts on log construction in the southeastern United States, noted in her survey notes on the house that it showed eastern Virginia antecedents in its diamond notching, an unusual log joinery technique in the upcountry South but common on the coastal plain. Given its early date, the house should probably be called the Holt-Baber-Bridges House. The Holts were one of the families in the Goose Pond community. The Bridges family bought the land and house in 1814. The house was moved from Oglethorpe County to the Sandy Creek Nature Center in Clarke County in 1980. (Mark Reinberger)

Worthington, M J and Seiter, J I 2018 “The Tree-Ring Dating of Ten Vernacular Buildings in Northeastern Georgia”, unpublished Oxford Tree-Ring Laboratory archive report 2018/05




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Contact Information

Oxford Tree-Ring Laboratory

Michael Worthington
Jane Seiter, Ph.D

25 E. Montgomery St.
Baltimore, MD 21230