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1740 A proposal to divide Georgia into two provinces and create a president and council of assistants for each province was first brought before the Trustees by James Vernon. [See "In Their Own Words . . ." below.] On April 15, 1741, the Trustees formally approved the change.
1842 Gov. Charles McDonald signed an act bestowing all rights of Georgia citizenship on the Cherokee wife of Lewis Ralston and their children – providing they never sought to recover any land formerly claimed by the Cherokees. Although the "Trail of Tears" has often been depicted as the forced removal of all Cherokees from Georgia in 1838, a small number of individuals and families remained in Georgia and were later given the rights of citizenship by individual acts of the General Assembly (see Dec. 29 entry)
1842 Gov. Charles McDonald signed an act repealing all laws prohibiting the free introduction of slaves into Georgia. However, on Dec. 22, 1843, this act itself was repealed.
1845 In Jefferson, Georgia, Dr. Crawford Long used anesthesia on his wife during the delivery of a child--the first time anesthesia was used during childbirth.
1845 Gov. George Crawford signed an act making it illegal for a white person to contract with a black mechanic or mason – whether free or slave – for the construction or repair of any building. The penalty for violation of the law was a fine up to $200.
1864 Sherman's Dec. 26 orders to move part of his army into South Carolina were rescinded. Also, news reached Savannah about Gen. Hood's disastrous losses at Nashville and Franklin.
For more, see This Week in Georgia Civil War History.
1894 Georgia's former state capitol in Atlanta – the Kimball Opera House – was destroyed by fire. The damage was so bad that the remains were subsequently demolished.
1942 The Atlanta Constitution reported that Rachel Pruden Herndon, secretary to black Atlanta attorney Austin Walden, had passed the Georgia Bar exam, thus making her the first black woman lawyer in Georgia history.
1956 The NAACP awarded its annual Spingarn Medal to Jackie Robinson, the first black to play baseball in the major leagues in recognition of his conduct and contributions both on and off the ball field.
1991 "Fried Green Tomatoes" – filmed principally in Fayetteville, Juliette, Zebulon, and Senoia, Georgia – was released nationwide to theaters on this day. For her performance in the film, Jessica Tandy would win the 1992 Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.
1998 Playing in the Georgia Dome, the Atlanta Falcons completed their regular season by beating the Miami Dolphins 38-16 to go 14-2 – an all-time franchise best. In their ninth consecutive win (another franchise record), running back Jamal Anderson set several Falcons records, plus established a NFL record for most rushes in a season.
2001 In the inaugural Seattle Bowl, Georgia Tech upset No. 11 Stanford by a score of 24-14.
2010 In the Independence Bowl, Georgia Tech lost to Air Force, 14-7, giving the Yellow Jackets a 6-7 record – the first losing season since 1996.
Georgia cities and towns first incorporated by acts approved on Dec. 27:
1836 Hawkinsville (Pulaski County)
1847 Ringgold (then Walker now Catoosa County)
1890 Helena (Telfair
County), Pearson (Coffee County), and Seville (Wilcox
In Their Own Words on This Day . . .
Source: U.K. Historical Manuscripts Commission, Diary of the First Earl of Egmont (London: His Majesty's Stationery Office, 1923), Vol. II, p. 516.
1740 According to Georgia's charter, no Trustee could hold civil office in the colony. Yet, in many ways, James Oglethorpe functioned as an acting governor. Eventually, many of the Trustees back in London felt that he had assumed too much civil authority and was responsible for many of their policies not being implemented in the colony. Finally, on this day, James Vernon made a proposal to fellow Trustees to dramatically alter the form and location of civil power in Georgia, as noted by the Earl of Egmont in his diary:
Source: U.K. Historical Manuscripts Commission, Diary of the First Earl of Egmont (London: His Majesty's Stationery Office, 1923), Vol. III, pp. 171-172.
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