The act creating Polk County authorized the justices of the inferior court to select the county seat, but until such action was taken elections and public business were to take place in Cedartown (then spelled "Cedar Town"). In an act of Feb. 8, 1854, the General Assembly designated Cedartown as permanent county seat and incorporated it as a town (Ga. Laws 1853-54, p. 224). Cedertown was so-named because of the many cedar trees growing in the area.
Polk County's first courthouse was built in 1852 and reportedly was burned by Union forces in 1864. A new courthouse was built in 1867, but it too burned down in 1887. Construction of a new two-story brick courthouse with clock tower began in 1889. In the early 1930s, structural deterioration of the clock tower led to its removal. The exterior of the courthouse was renovated and painted white. This building was torn down in 1951 and replaced with the present courthouse. In 1984-85, Polk County officials renovated the former Cedartown City Hall and designated it "Polk County Courthouse No. 2".
312.2 Square Miles
Polk County was created from Floyd and Paulding counties on Dec. 20, 1851 by an act of the General Assembly (Ga. Laws 1851-52, p. 52). In 1856, portions of Polk County were used to help create Haralson County (Ga. Laws 1856, p. 110).
Georgia’s 96th county was named for Pres. James Polk (1795-1849), who had died two years earlier.