Located in southwest Georgia, Colquitt County was created in 1856 by an act of the Georgia General Assembly.
It was designated as the 115th county in Georgia and named for former U.S. Senator from Georgia, Walter Terry Colquitt, who had passed away the previous year. In 1879, a county seat charter was adopted and 50 acres in the center of the county was identified as Moultrie, named after General William Moultrie, a Revolutionary War hero. Other municipalities in the county include Berlin, Doerun, Ellenton, Funston, Norman Park and Riverside.
Once known on maps as the “Pine Barrens” because of the deep forest of pines that covered the land, the area was used mainly as a buffer zone between the Creeks and the Seminoles. The first white settlers that moved to the area made use of the forest. They cleared land, shipped out lumber, and harvested pine gum for turpentine. Both of these products were important to shipbuilding and thus naval stores were established throughout the region. The railroad soon followed and the county grew and prospered.
By the early 1900’s much of the land had been cleared and the county’s “farm agent” was instrumental in developing a crop-diversification system known as the “Colquitt County Plan.” This system was recognized during the Great Depression by the U.S. Farm Security Administration and Colquitt County received national attention for its progressive planning. Today, Colquitt County still has a thriving agricultural industry that is the most diverse of any county east of the Mississippi river.
Each fall over 200,000 visitors come to Moultrie to visit the Sunbelt Ag Expo. Moose Moss Aquatic Center, an internationally known diving well, is also located in Moultrie. Right down the road is the Colquitt County Arts Center which offers extensive programming in the visual and performing arts. Of course an introduction about Moultrie is not complete without mentioning the beautiful downtown Moultrie commercial historic district. The very impressive Colquitt County Courthouse sits in the middle of the square surrounded by a variety of local shops in well-preserved historical buildings. Moultrie Technical College and ABAC on the Square also bring great resources to this thriving community.