The Chief Vann House in Northwest Georgia was completed in 1804 in what was then the Cherokee Nation. From the Georgia Department of Natural Resources: “During the 1790s, James Vann became a Cherokee Indian leader and wealthy businessman. He established the largest and most prosperous plantation in the Cherokee Nation, covering 1,000 acres of what is now Murray County. In 1804 he completed construction of a beautiful 2 ½-story brick home that was the most elegant in the Cherokee Nation. After Vann was murdered in 1809, his son Joseph inherited the mansion and plantation. Joseph was also a Cherokee leader and became even more wealthy than his father.
In the 1830s almost the entire Cherokee Nation was forced west by state and federal troops on the infamous Trail of Tears. The Vann family lost their elegant home, rebuilding in the Cherokee Territory of Oklahoma. Today the Vann House survives as Georgia’s best-preserved historic Cherokee Indian home. A guided tour allows visitors to see the house which features beautiful hand carvings, a remarkable “floating” staircase, a 12-foot mantle and fine antiques.”
The Vann family were slave owners, and visitors to the site also can see reconstructed slave cabins and other outbuildings.
My husband and I drive by the Chief Vann House every time we visit our daughter and her family. The site today is on the corner of a busy intersection with gas stations on two of the other corners, and it is easy to drive by without realizing what a historical treasure the house and grounds are. We drove by many times ourselves before taking the time to stop and visit the site where I took these (and many more) photos.