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Dawsonville, incorporated December 10, 1859, is the county seat of Dawson County. The city was named after William C. Dawson, a compiler of the laws of Georgia and commander of a brigade in the Creek Indian War of 1836. Dawson also served in both houses of the state legislature and in Congress before the Civil War.
Among the first structures built in Dawsonville were a log courthouse and a wooden reinforced jail. The original courthouse was replaced in 1860, by the historic courthouse which still stands in the middle of Dawsonville. The original jail was destroyed by fire soon after it was completed during a failed escape attempt. The county was without a jail until 1881, when the historic jail was completed. During the period when no jail was available, county officials relied on jails in surrounding counties to house prisoners. The old jail is located west of the courthouse and, along with the historic courthouse, is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Both the jail and the courthouse have undergone extensive renovation to restore them to their original appearance.
Dawsonville hosts a number of festivals and events, including The Mountain Moonshine Festival the 4th weekend in October. The Dawsonville town square comes alive with cars, arts and crafts displays, clogging, and other entertainment.
Dawsonville's also the home of NASCAR Champion, Bill Elliott. Stop by the Georgia Racing Hall of Fame Museum to see a large display of racing memorabilia.
According to the 2010 Census, the City of Dawsonville has a population of 2536 residents. Between 2000 and 2010 Census, the city experienced a population increase of 139%.