Owners began being held
responsible by law in the 1950s for the actions of their dogs in Moultrie
and Colquitt County. Health laws and city ordinances now further require
that dogs must be inoculated annually against rabies....but canines in
Colquitt County began losing their freedoms in 1895.
March 4, 1895, the Moultrie City Council made it unlawful for any dog to
run loose habitually on the streets without a collar and metal tag. Tags
were to be furnished by the city clerk for $1.00.
In the mid 1950s, two of Berlin's oldest residents, R. J. (Bob) Rogers and
L. C. (Lee) Croft, recalled many interesting things about the early days.
Rogers moved to Berlin some eight years after it was incorporated for the
first time in the late summer of 1910. He had been a resident ever since.
During the time that Rogers lived in Berlin he saw the city flourish as a
community, then go down and come back again.
Rogers remembers the time when Berlin had 24 stores around the business
block. Then, the community had 2 two drug stores, a furniture store and a
farm implement building where the Baptist church now stands.
After the town went defunct, Rogers says he saw most of those building
Mr. Rogers was 72 the year that he talked with The Observer reporter.
He was Berlin's oldest living councilman, having been first elected in
1919. He served until 1952, although there was no township during part of
Mrs. Rogers says her father, J. A. Sellers, who later became a minister,
hauled the lumber from J.B. Norman's sawmill in Norman Park with oxen to
build Colquitt County's courthouse (other than the original log
Mr. Lee Croft, who was born March 4, 1877, said, "...I lived here before
Berlin ever thought about being a town."
George Harrell, Berlin's oldest resident in the mid 1950s, was too ill to
recall anything about the old days, said Mr. Croft.
Mr. Croft says only about a dozen houses were in the area when Berlin was
first incorporated. Berry Croft was the first mayor and Will May was mayor
when the town went defunct.
Lee Croft remembered that Bill Hatcher was the first mayor to be elected
when the township was started the second time and Roy Nesbitt followed
The area where Berlin now is was once a good section of naval stores.
Croft said he was living there when the first tree was chipped for
Mr. Croft reported that his grandfather, Jacob H. Croft, donated the two
acres of land where the present courthouse now stands. Croft said that the
original deed on file in Atlanta, stated that if the land is ever used for
anything but a courthouse, the land will resort to the estate.
Women as voters and active in politics began in Colquitt County September
21, 1920 when Mrs. Anna Ashburn registered to vote in the municipal
election - thus becoming the first woman in the county to take advantage
of the woman suffrage amendment to the United States Constitution.
Mrs. W.A. Covington, who accompanied Mrs. Ashburn to the City Hall, was
officially listed as the second woman to register to vote.
In 1956, three women held elected offices in Colquitt County: Mrs. Mattie
Lou Ingram (Chesley), County Ordinary; Mrs. W. H. Varner and Mrs. T. S.
Beene, members of the Moultrie Board of Education.