Georgia became the fifth state to secede from the Union, on January 19, 1861, yet the state's geographical diversity and the dominance of its nonslaveholding white populace made its selection of delegates to the 1861 secession convention one of the most divided (in terms of delegates for and against secession) within the first wave of southern states to leave the Union.The final vote to secede, however, was supported by a sizeable majority of those Civil War Georgians played a prominent role in the new Confederate government.
(Only Virginia was larger, until its northwestern counties withdrew to form the separate state of West Virginia in 1863.) As both an Atlantic seaboard state and a Deep South state, Georgia played a particularly crucial role in the secession crisis and the formation of the Confederacy.
It had the largest population and the largest number of both slaves and slaveholders of any Deep South state (and was second only to Virginia overall), and yet it had two vast geographical areas in which slavery played only a minimal part—the southeastern wiregrass and longleaf pine woods region, and the northern mountains.
The colony was governed by royally appointed governors instead of a council of Trustees from 1752 to 1776, ending with the outbreak of the Revolutionary War (1775-83).colony as a refuge for the debtors who crowded London prisons; however, no such prisoners were among the initial settlers.
Military concerns were a far more motivating force for the British government, which wanted Georgia (named for King George II) as a buffer zone to protect South Carolina and its other southern colonies against incursions from Florida by the Spanish, Britain's greatest rival for North American territory.
It was on that frontier that the state founded, in a 1785 charter, the University of Georgia, the first university in the nation established by a state government.
Sixteen years later the school opened its doors in the wilderness from which Athens later emerged.
By the mid-1600s English settlers from South Carolina made forays across the Savannah River and into northeast Georgia, engaging first in a thriving slave trade of Indians and later in the even more lucrative deerskin trade, which continued well beyond the British colonization of Georgia.colonial experience was very different from that of the other British colonies in North America.
Established in 1732, with settlement in Savannah in 1733, Georgia was the last of the thirteen colonies to be founded.
The more permanent settlements of the Late Archaic Period, including the notable population center at Stallings Island in the Savannah River, date back to 3000 B. The earliest Europeans in North America, the Spanish, never established any permanent settlements within the region that would become Georgia, as they did in Florida and along the Gulf Coast.
Their only attempt to do so, during a naval expedition led by Lúcas Vázquez de Ayllón in 1526, lasted only six weeks.
In 1787 two Georgians, Abraham Baldwin and William Few Jr., signed the new U. Constitution at the Constitutional Convention, also in Philadelphia, and Georgia became the fourth state (following Delaware, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey) to enter the Union when it ratified the Constitution on January 2, 1788.