Brief History of Tate

Tate is a small unincorporated village, but one that is well known worldwide for its incomparable Georgia Marble. 

Tate travels back in time before life existed at the foot hills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.  Centuries later, Cherokee Indians became inhabitants of the land.

The old Federal Road had its beginnings as a plain country road, but many years later it became a road for travel.  The Federal Government negotiated with the Cherokee Nation, thereby receiving  it name "Federal Road".  Between 1805 and 1813, the road became useful.  As the area opened up, white settlers began building homes along and the the road.

In 1818, Andrew Harnage and his Cherokee wife, Nancy Sanders Harnage, owned and operated a tavern where the Pink Marble Mansion sits today. 

In 1819, this historical Tavern was selected as the Federal Post office.  The post office was known as Marble Works for a period of time and then renamed Harnageville.  When the railroad came through the long Swamp Valley in the 1880's, the town and the post office became known as "Tate".

Mr. Harnage owned land lot 147 where Harnage Tavern was located and all the land holding rights to the beautiful marble.  He eventually lost the land and Samuel C. Tate bought it.  The old tavern burned and a large two story framed house was built by Sam Tate. 

Henry T. Fitzsimmons, a native of Ireland, is credited with finding the marble cropping and saw it was a superior grade of marble.  He then quarried marble on a small scale and opened a marble processing plant.

The Georgia Marble Company was chartered on May 1, 1884. 

Colonel Sam Tate became president of The Georgia Marble Company in 1905.  Because of him the people of Tate were enriched by the marble industry as it afforded work for the families, homes, excellent schools, an intense cultural environment, strong Christian ideals and a rich heritage.

In 1921, Same Tate tore the old house down and built the Pink Marble Mansion that you see today.


Tate and The Georgia Marble Company are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.