Connecting History, Industry and Family...
Over two centuries have defined this community by generations of prosperity, wars, and economic transition. Our Colorful Heritage resonates along the tree-lined streets of Washington County. Stately examples of Victorian, Greek Revival and Antebellum-era architecture stand testament to the resilience of this Middle Georgia community of over 21,000 residents. Through it all, the small town neighborhoods of Washington County have continued to offer a genteel hospitality to newcomers and visitors alike.
Historic buildings, sites and cultural events provide many opportunities to enjoy the delightful past and the vibrant present of the “Kaolin Capital of the World.” Created in 1784 by the Georgia legislature, Washington County was the tenth county formed in Georgia and was named in tribute to Revolutionary War General, and President George Washington. Originally a
geographically large county, ten other counties were eventually carved from it, resulting in the present boundaries. In 1796, Sandersville was named the county seat. Other communities in the county include Davisboro, Deepstep, Harrison, Oconee, Riddleville, Tennille and Warthen.
With a prime location in the heart of Georgia and the emergence of the Fall Line Freeway (a designed growth corridor linking Augusta and
Columbus), Washington County sits in the driver’s seat for continued economic vitality. While the kaolin industry and its related services continue
to have direct impact on the Washington County economy as an $800 million a year industry and the largest export in Georgia, local leaders
have aggressively pursued diversification of its industrial base in recent years. Local citizens’ support in recent years of a series of SPLOSTs
(Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax) has permitted the acquisition and development of a 215-acre industrial park as well as an additional 122 acre nearby parcel.
As kaolin mining and processing continue at a stable pace, these industrial leaders are also concerned with the environmental impacts of the
industry. Kaolin companies have taken the lead over the past forty years in preserving the viability of the area forests and waterways. Since 1969, over 80% of all impacted land areas have been restored in and around Washington County. This has been an added benefit to the community’s second largest industry, timber production.
The enhanced infrastructure capabilities and the great quality of life have attracted such well-known companies as Melt-Blown Technologies,
Bennett Building Systems, Dura-Line Pipe Company, American Railcar Industries, Trojan Battery Company, and Zorlu Manufacturing. In addition,
local companies such as Washington County Machine Shop and Helton Electrical Services have expanded their operations. Promoting local
entrepreneurship, Washington County is designated an Entrepreneur Friendly Community by the Georgia Department of Economic Development.
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