Midway, Georgia

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Midway is a city in Liberty County, Georgia, United States. It is a part of the Hinesville-Fort Stewart metropolitan statistical area. The population was 1,100 at the 2000 census.

Midway has several museums including, the Midway Museum and Cemetery and the Dorchester Academy Museum. Midway is surrounded by wetlands. There are also two islands, Colonel's Island and Dolphin Island. Midway is situated near Savannah, Brunswick, St. Simons Island, and Jekyll Island.

As of 2009, the mayor of Midway is Dr. Clemontine Washington.

Contents

History

Midway has a long and distinguished history dating back as far as the 18th century. English Puritans founded the Midway Society on August 28, 1754 in a log meeting house on Midway Neck. The Midway Society was a strongly religious Congregationalist group. These Puritans migrated to St. John's Parish, Georgia from Dorchester, South Carolina in 1752 and established new Dorchester and another nearby settlement what was later to become the Midway Community. In 1752 the Council of Georgia granted the settlers 31,950 acres (129.3 km2) primarily because colonial officials wanted a large number of settlers there to protect them from the Creek Indians. The original settlers were primarily rice planters and the Midway settlers developed a strong agricultural economy aided by the 1,500 slaves they brought from South Carolina.[3]

The settlers in the area took an early stand for independence. In May of 1775, Lyman Hall (a Midway Church member) was sent to the Continental Congress as a delegate from the parish of St. John. A year later Hall and St. John's Parish resident Button Gwinnett (along with George Walton of Augusta) signed the Declaration of Independence. Another Midway resident, Nathan Brownson, served in the Continental Congress from 1776 to 1778, but was absent from the Signing. In 1777 St. John's Parish, St. Andrew's Parish, and St. James' Parish combined to become Liberty County. Puritans also settled in this area.

Established in 1752, the Midway Congregational Church building was destroyed during the Revolutionary War. British in the area burned it, but it was rebuilt. The present building (which still stands) was completed in 1792. The religious welfare of the slaves was given high consideration. The "colored" members of the church worshiped with whites throughout the entire existence of the church. On Sundays, the two races worshiped together, with the blacks in the galleries and the whites in the pews below. Every April, the Midway Society conducts an annual service commemorating the town's settlement. The Church and the adjacent cemetery were placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973. Among those buried here are Daniel Stewart and James Screven, two American Generals of the Revolutionary War. In the center of the cemetery there is a large monument dedicated to these men. The monument was dedicated in 1915.

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