September 8

Horace King

September 8, 1807 - Columbus, Newnan, Carrolton, Albany

Horace King, one of the most renowned bridge builders in Georgia and American history, was born a slave in Chesterfield, South Carolina. His owner, John Godwin, brought him to the Columbus area in 1830 and together they built the first bridge across the Chattahoochee River connecting Georgia and Alabama.

Godwin recognized King’s talents as both engineer and builder. He allowed King to travel alone and build bridges throughout the South.

King designed and built huge town lattice truss bridges over nearly all major rivers between west Georgia and northeastern Mississippi and at almost every Chattahoochee River crossing between Carroll County and Fort Gaines.

In the mid–1850s he built Moore’s Creek Bridge over the Chattahoochee between Newnan and Carrollton. King’s five children continued his work after his death in 1885, and in 2004 the Horace King Overlook was dedicated at Riverfront Park in Albany. Of the hundred or so covered bridges King built, only one remains, in Meriwether County — the last tangible legacy of the remarkable man born on September 8, 1807, Today in Georgia History.