The Alice Walker Driving Tour
Alice Malsenior Walker, author of the award-winning novel "The Color Purple," was born in Eatonton on February 9, 1944. Eatonton celebrates the author with the Alice Walker Driving Tour that takes you past several important places in Walker's life. Those places include the church she was baptized in and faithfully attended, Wards Chapel A.M.E. Church. As well as located across the street is Wards Chapel Cemetery where her parents, Willie Lee Walker and Minnie Tallulah Grant Walker are buried. Just past the cemetery, her childhood home is open to the public as Southern Manor Farms. Inside, a room is dedicated to the Walker Family and includes items from the time period. The home is open Wednesday - Friday & Sunday from 1 - 5 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. with many homemade products for sale.
The Alice Walker Driving Tour brochure is available at the Chamber office and also gives a timeline of important events in Walker's life.
Rock Eagle and Rock Hawk Effigies
The Rock Eagle and Rock Hawk Effigies are located off the Historical Piedmont Scenic Byway in Putnam County. The rock monuments are made up of milky quartz rocks and are in the shapes of birds. They are located on two of the highest points in Putnam County and they are believed to be the only structures of their kind east of the Mississippi River.
Rock Eagle measures 120 feet wing tip to wing tip and 102 feet from head to tail. The mound is eight feet tall at the breast. Rock Hawk measures 132 feet wing tip to wing tip and 100 feet head to forked tail. It has been speculated that the mounds were probably built about 2,000 years ago by Native Americans.
Rock Eagle may be viewed at the Rock Eagle 4-H camp on Hwy 441. The site has spacious parking, picnic tables and an observation tower to view the effigy. Rock Eagle 4-H camp is the largest camp in Georgia. The camp also has a natural history museum that can be viewed by the public by appointment.
For more information on Rock Eagle 4-H camp, call (706) 484-2800 or visit www.rockeagle4h.org.
Rock Hawk is located off Hwy 16 along the Historic Piedmont Scenic Byway beside Lawrence Shoals Park. Rock Hawk Park offers an outdoor classroom with over 15 miles of hiking and biking trails. Two observation tours give you a bird's eye view of the Effigy and local wildlife. There is also an archery range available for archers, bow hunters, youth groups and others interested in perfecting their target skills. The range consists of a static range, where users shoot into large 'bow butt' targets secured inside freestanding sheds, and a 3-D trail with realistic animal targets on 17 lanes. Users should bring their own equipment.
For more information on Rock Hawk Park, Effigy & Trails visit, rockhawk.org.
Both sites are free to the viewing public and are open from sun up to sun down.
Historic Downtown Eatonton
Eatonton has a beautiful, well preserved historical district in downtown. The residential section of the historic district of the city features over 100 antebellum and Victorian era structures, as well as many historic commercial buildings. The historic district also boasts several high style examples of Greek revival, Queen Anne, Folk Victorian and Gothic Revival homes.
As you immerse yourself in the history and atmosphere of the town, you will begin to understand the southern experience. Stop by the Chamber and pick up an Eatonton Self-Guided Historic Walking Tour brochure. The brochure showcases over 75 historic homes and buildings throughout Eatonton.
The Historic Piedmont Scenic Byway follows Hwy 16 through Putnam County. It follows a route once known as the Okfuskee trail, an Indian trail connecting what is now Charleston, S.C. with the Mississippi River.
Almost every tourist site in Putnam County falls along the Historic Piedmont Scenic Byway. Follow the road and see Rock Eagle, Rock Hawk, pristine countryside, Eatonton's historic downtown, historic homes and churches. Brochures listing the attractions along the scenic byway may be found at the Chamber office. For more information visit www.scenicbyway.org .
Please call (706) 485-6850 for more information.