Good evening, everyone. I’m truly honored that Leslie invited me to speak here today. She has invited me a couple of times before to other events, and it’s always a pleasure to participate. This event is particularly impressive, and I’m glad to be a part of it.

The reason I became interested in writing my fourth book on local history is deeply personal. My family has roots in Hall County going back about 200 years, just before the county was officially formed. Originally, this area was Cherokee territory, situated right on what was then the Jackson County line. When Hall County was created, it included parts of Cherokee-ceded land and portions of Jackson County. Interestingly, my four-times great-grandfather, a Revolutionary War veteran, and his son John, who served with Buffington, found themselves split by the new county line in 1818—one in Hall and the other in Jackson.

This historical connection piqued my interest in genealogical and other forms of historical research, which I have been conducting for about forty to fifty years. One intriguing discovery was that my three-times great-grandfather, John “Canada” Ladd Sr., served in Buffington’s company during the removal of the Cherokee. He also built Fort Buffington in Cherokee County. Despite being nearly 60 years old at the time of his enlistment on Christmas Day 1837—well beyond the age limit of 45—I suspect his inclusion was due to his close friendship and business dealings with Captain Buffington, who possibly valued more mature and controllable men over the rambunctious younger soldiers.

In my research, I delved into numerous original documents in the National Archives, uncovering a wealth of information that allowed me to compile this book. My approach to historical writing is very much influenced by my career in law enforcement, where I worked major crimes and homicide cases. I treat each book like a case: focusing on detail, ensuring all facts are verifiable from the record, and presenting them in chronological order.

The book isn’t just a recount of facts; it reflects the voices and perspectives of the people from that era. I see myself not as an author but as a compiler of information, ensuring that what I think personally does not overshadow the historical truths conveyed by those who lived during those times.

I’m excited to share these stories with you, and I’m prepared to delve into specifics as we discuss more about the book. I appreciate your time and am ready to answer any questions you may have about this fascinating slice of our history. Thank you for being here tonight.

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John Latty – Carrying Off The Cherokee

Good evening, everyone. I’m truly honored that Leslie invited me to speak here today. She has invited me a couple of times before to other events, and it’s always a pleasure to participate. This event is particularly impressive, and I’m glad to be a part of it. The reason I

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