The Elbert County, Georgia, Families 
By Harold Graham
It is unlikely than any county in our nation has contributed more to the population of Newton County, Mississippi, than Elbert County, Georgia.
Elbert County, Georgia was created in 1790 from Wilkes County with its county seat as Elberton. An early map indicates the eastern boundary as the Tugaloo River , across from which was found Pendleton County, South Carolina. To the north lay Franklin County, to the west Madison County and to the south Oglethorpe and Wilkes counties. A later division would place Hart County along its northern boundary.
Elbert County, Georgia, 1846
In the early days of the county cotton and tobacco were the major crops; however, the native granite would eventually become the leading crop of the county. Today, Elbert County is the leading producing of native granite in the world, such to the extent that it is doubtful that any modern cemetery in the United States fails to have at least some piece of Elbert County real estate.
To begin a roll call of surnames who migrated from Elbert County to Newton County:
Abney, Adams, Alexander, Brown, Carter, Clark, Cleveland, Gaines, Galloway, Hailey, Haley, Henton, James, Johnson, Johnston, Kimball/Kimbell, Maxey, Maxwell, McClinton, McCullough, McElhenney, McMullan, Robertson, Roebuck, Rowzee, Rucker, Taylor, Terrell, Thornton, Wansley, Warren, and White 
Most of these families settled in a six-mile-wide corridor beginning near the town of Decatur and extending to Union. Over the course of time these families would form the nucleus of the membership of two churches, Mt. Zion Congregational Methodist Church and Rock Branch Baptist Church.Â Some of these families moved further westward after a few years, but most stayed.
Most of these families came to Newton County beginning about 1855 and ending with the Civil War.
Their migration was prompted by two circumstances. First, many early settlers to Newton County moved westward to Texas and other states during the 1850s in search of new land. This left vacant lands that accommodated the migration of new settlers to Newton County.
The second circumstance is best described by Milton McMullan, in reference to his grandfather, Patrick McMullan, Jr.:
Patrick was a farmer. Soon his sons would be approaching manhood and would want their own farms. Patrick could see a problem. Population and land prices in Elbert County were rising rapidly. It would be difficult to acquire land. Patrick had heard of cheap land in Mississippi. This was the answer to his problem. In 1857 he moved the entire family to Mississippi. He bought a thousand acres of land north of Decatur, the county seat of Newton County. With the help of his ten slaves and the older boys help he cleared eight hundred acres, leaving two hundred acres in woodland and a small creek. He built a fine house and school and named it Mount Vernon. One hundred acres of the plantation was planted in apple trees, the remaining seven hundred would be planted in cotton. By the spring of 1861 the apple trees were growing. 
In addition to growing apples Patrick built a cider mill and sold the apple juice to customers throughout the area as well as sending much of it back to Elbert County because he knew they loved cider in his old stomping grounds. He also built a store and started a post office known as Mt. Vernon with one of his sons as postmaster. Mt. Vernon Congregational Methodist Church was built through the efforts of Patrick and his neighbors. Patrick was an avid promoter of the economic prospects of Newton County, as reflected by the letters that he wrote to his relatives back in Georgia.
The typical early route from Georgia to central Mississippi was along the Fall Line Trail. 
The migration to Newton County was accomplished by wagon trains, as many as 60 wagons at a time, we are told, which came overland to Newton County, a journey that took several weeks. One of the guides was Thomas Seaborn McMullan, a distant cousin of Patrick McMullan, Jr. One of his clients was Mrs. Caroline Clark McClinton, a widow, who sought to move to her relatives at Decatur. Thomas and Caroline fell in love during the trip and were married in Alabama .
 Special thanks to Ann Burkes and Terry Terrell Lange in the preparation of this story.
 Merges with other streams to form Savannah River.
 Some of these family names (Adams, Brown, Johnson, McClinton, and Thornton, for example) represent multiple sources of origin and are not exclusive to Elbert County.
 Milton McMullan, My Grandfather, Patrick McMullan, unpublished manuscript, n/d.
 Carrie Eldridge, An Atlas of Southern Trails to the Mississippi, CDM Printing Inc., Huntington, West Virginia, 1999.
 Albert Lawrence McMullan, McMullan and Allied Families, ca. 1975.