Georgia's past has diverged from the nation's and given the state and its people a distinctive culture and character. Some of the best, and the worst, aspects of American and Southern history can be found in the story of what is arguably the most important state in the South. Yet just as clearly Georgia has not always followed the road traveled by the rest of the nation and the region. Explaining the common and divergent paths that make us who we are is one reason the Georgia Historical Society has collaborated with Buddy Sullivan and Arcadia Publishing to produce Georgia: A State History, the first full-length history of the state produced in nearly a generation. Sullivan's lively account draws upon the vast archival and photographic collections of the Georgia Historical Society to trace the development of Georgia's politics, economy, and society and relates the stories of the people, both great and small, who shaped our destiny. This book opens a window on our rich and sometimes tragic past and reveals to all of us the fascinating complexity of what it means to be a Georgian.
The Georgia Historical Society was founded in 1839 and is headquartered in Savannah. The Society tells the story of Georgia by preserving records and artifacts, by publishing and encouraging research and scholarship, and by implementing educational and outreach programs. This book is the latest in a long line of distinguished publications produced by the Society that promote a better understanding of Georgia history and the people who make it. Buddy Sullivan is the author of twelve books and is recognized as a leading authority on the history of coastal Georgia. He is the author of Early Days on the Georgia Tidewater and From Beautiful Zion to Red Bird Creek: A History of Bryan County, Georgia (recipient of the Georgia Historical Society's Lilla M. Hawes Award in 2000), in addition to published works on nineteenth-century coastal Georgia agriculture. A native of Savannah and McIntosh County, Georgia, he is the Director of the Sapelo Island National Estuarine Research Reserve and has been closely affiliated with the Georgia Historical Society since 1992.