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Fulton County Historical Markers

The Saga of Gold Tooth John


  • Source: David Seibert
  • Marker: The Saga of Gold Tooth John
  • Location: Piedmont Circle just west of Piedmont Rd. at the edge of the motel parking lot in Atlanta

THE SAGA OF GOLD TOOTH JOHN (Or: How the Holiday Inn Central Came To Be)

First the Cherokee Indians were here.

Then the White settlers were here. Among the first of these was Edwin Plaster who built his home near here. He grew cotton on this plot of land, and built the first permanent bridge across Peachtree Creek. He built a road known as Plasters Bridge Road from his plantation to Decatur Street in Atlanta.

And then the YANKEES were here!

Edwin Plaster went off to war. He returned to find his family scattered, his home burned, his fields devastated. This was wrought by Bill Sherman, the man who occupied and burned Atlanta and its environs (William T. Sherman, General, U.S. Army. The man who was the first to say “War is hell” … . and who is said to be the originator of Urban Renewal in Atlanta). Edwin Plaster rebuilt his home across the street from this site.

And then HOLIDAY INN CENTRAL was here!

When grading was started for the construction of Holiday Inn Central, there remained many of the Confederate entrenchments which were built across this site. Much of the decor and design of the Inn is built around the traditions of the area. Meeting rooms are named for Generals John B. Gordon-CSA, J.B. Hood-CSA, James Longstreet-CSA, J.B. McPherson-USA, and William T. Sherman, USA.

Gold Tooth John was the ancient Plaster family handyman who built the old stone steps directly below this sign. The steps were left standing as a monument to the glorious past. Legend has it that old Gold Tooth John, wearing rumpled old clothes and a set of whiskers, is often seen wandering about the Holiday Inn Central at night – looking for minnie balls … … …