Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Enchanted Land

That’s what John Berryman (“Berry”) Turner and his family found in 1828, when they settled near what is now Cleveland, in North Georgia.

Georgia, in the early 1800s, was a place in turmoil. White settlers arrived in increasing numbers, from Virginia and the Carolinas, taking advantage of “land grants”, state lotteries that allowed the winners to take out grants for the purchase of hundreds of acres of land. Georgia held 8 such lotteries between 1805 and 1833.

Inheritances to Berry Turner’s large family (he and his first wife, Rebecca Etris, had 10 children; upon her death, when he was 65, he married Jemima Wilkens, age 18, and had another 7 children with her) and debt-settlements led to divisions that did not allow his original 250 acres to remain in the family.

Today, Berry’s 5th generation descendant, Sharon Turner Mauney, owns 60 acres, including the site of the family’s original homestead, and has established LoganBerry Heritage Farm, “Logan” being another important family name in North Georgia. The naturally-grown produce includes (seasonally) tomatoes, corn, beans, garlic, herbs, greens, okra, masses of sunflowers, cosmos, zinnias and other flowering plants.

This agri-tourism destination now beckons visitors from all over the planet, primarily, of course, from Atlanta north, as well as the surrounding counties.

Call 706-348-6068 or send an e-mail (loganberryheritagefarm@gmail.com) to arrange a tour, or go and shop at the seasonal market. This year’s final market day is probably October 30 and Mother Nature will determine the first market day of 2011.