|From Madison GA|
Occasionally, my most frequent traveling companion and I just pick a place and go, hoping for the best. The adventure is fun in itself and often it turns out well. My companion has a thing for old houses of the grand variety so we picked Madison, Georgia a little while ago as our destination. Sitting about an hour East of Atlanta, its a nice place for a day trip.
Now this is the city which has been called “the prettiest small town in America” and the “town Sherman refused to burn,” so we knew we weren’t taking the hugest risk with our time. We stopped at the Madison Visitor Center, and were able to pick up a free Walking Tour guide of Madison (Video here ). As I like to get exercise in my pastimes, we walked the 1.4 mile path looking at some very nice houses and old buildings. The path is an unequal figure 8, walking mainly down Main Street and Academy Street.
|From Madison GA|
According to the brochure, oldest structure is either the Stagecoach House, the Rogers House and Rose Cottage, or Heritage Hall (dated c.1810, c.1810 & c.1811 respectively. The walk boasts two dozen buildings which predate the Civil War, and several more built before the turn of the 20th Century. The architecture varied from Queen Anne to Romanesque to Greek Revival, but also included a few pragmatic true Georgia structures like the Livery Stable (c.1895) or Calvary Baptist Church (c.1833). I enjoyed stretching my legs and taking photos, while my friend gawked at the buildings.
Now aside from the historic walking tour, the Madison County Downtown District boasts the typical stuff you would expect from a small Georgia town. It has the little boutiques and antiques stores. It has a few places to eat (We had stopped about 25 minutes away at the Blue Willow Inn in Social Circle), so I can’t tell you anything about the food. There was some restaurant or bar converted from an old bank (the Ye Olde Colonial), that looked both interesting and closed. Madison does boast one thing of interest, which is incredibly unique, the Bruce Wiener Micro Car Museum , which is supposed to have the largest collection of microcars (cars with 700c motors or less, you‘d know one if you saw one) in the world. Unfortunately, for us, the day we went the place was close for a private function. Later that day, we were treated to some bluegrass music at one of the stores just off the square.
So that’s my little story about Madison, Georgia. Is it the prettiest small town in America? Well, I haven’t seen them all, but it is very nice. If you’re into Antebellum homes, it’s a can’t miss destination. I will probably go back to see the Microcar Museum later or possible to tour the insides of the homes around Christmastime.
Approximate Time: 45-60 minutes
Approximate Distance: 1.5 miles
Trail Surface: Sidewalks
Features: Antebellem Buildings
Scenic Quality: A-
Parking: Free on the Square
Hours of Operation:
Maps: Available at Welcome Center