The Fort Hawkins Case

Did you know?

Located right off of Emory highway stands a wooden tower that looks over the road and it’s nearby neighborhoods.  Fort Hawkins is no stranger to Macon locals, but could there still be a soldier standing guard there?  Could Benjamin Hawkins himself still be there?  We will discuss that, but first it’s history.

According to its own website, “Fort Hawkins was established by President Thomas Jefferson and Indian Agent Col. Benjamin Hawkins as an official U.S. Army Fort and Indian Factory for trading and meeting with Native Americans.” We feel like that’s such a “jammed packed” sentence that it may be best to break it down.  We also feel that it doesn’t give the fort’s history justice. Let’s go over it, beginning with Benjamin Hawkins.

Col. Hawkins was an extraordinary man with an extraordinary legacy that, unfortunately, many have forgotten over time.  Seeing as he was at one time a Revolutionary War Officer, a North Carolina Senator and a member of the Continental Congress (basically the congress over the 13 original colonies), and was known as one of the best peacemakers of his time, he was appointed by George Washington himself to negotiate with the Creeks (now Muscogee, respectively.)  If you take a second to think about that, it may just blow your mind.  That’s probably the most impressive resumé on any figure we’ve covered so far.

Nonetheless, after a treaty with the Muscogees in 1805, the Jefferson Administration sent Benjamin Hawkins himself to the wilderness.  We say “wilderness” because, at the time, that’s all the area was.  In fact, the nearly 100 acres were cleared in, on and around the fort to avoid surprise attacks.  Also remember, it’s practically next door to what is now the Ocmulgee Mounds National Park.  To further the point, interestingly and astoundingly, during those times the Ocmulgee River was the Southwestern border of the United State.  We know, you may want to re-read that again, we had to as well.  It makes you view the area differently.  All of that in mind, the fort was completed in 1806.

The fort served through small battles with Native Americans and the War of 1812.  Even though it was decommissioned in 1828, it still saw some violence during the Civil War.  It’s important to keep in mind that, by then, the fort was more than likely laying waste, nearly destroyed.  That serves as a testament to how bad things were getting for the Confederacy, at least to us.

Today, what’s left standing is not the original tower.  The tower you see now is a replica that was built in the late 1930s or early 1940s.  It is indeed still in the exact spot of its original position.  The tower was reestablished, according to the book “Ghost Of Macon” by Mary Lee Irby, by the “Daughters of the American Revolution and the Works Progress Administration.”  Admittedly, we did get a lot of these facts from that book and tried our best to double check everything for accuracy.  It does hold up.  That leads us to a question:  If Fort Hawkins was that significant, why isn’t it much more well known?   We’ll chalk that up to another reason why preservation and history are so important.

Hey, Middle Georgia Haunted History, what about the ghost?”  We’re glad you asked.  It’s been recorded and reported by many people that a soldier of some sort stands in the Fort’s tower at night.  Some have even claimed to have seen Benjamin Hawkins himself.  All of that, or course, is rumor.  Oddly enough, to add to the “creepy factor”, parts of the stone and original walls of the fort were actually used to build portions of Rose Hill Cemetery.  In fact, there is a decent sized wall standing today in Rose Hill containing the original stones.  Turn right as soon as you enter the gates (during the day), go down the hill and it’ll be the first wall on your right (about 4-5 feet tall).  We don’t know how that plays into the “Paranormal,” but if there was a recipe for “strange happenings” we’re positive it starts with that.  As always, we encourage you to study its history and decide for yourself!

The Wall Mentioned Above. Courtesy of MGHH

Hey!  We hope you enjoyed this post.  It was chalked full of amazing facts about Macon, long before it was even Macon.  Hopefully, it will give you a better understanding of historical monuments and places.  We sure do appreciate it more now.  Also, visit to learn more about the place and how you can help maybe get it re-opened and support it!

Courtesy of forthawkins,com


%d bloggers like this: