The Atlanta Constitution from Atlanta, Georgia on January 19, 1985 · 78
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The Atlanta Constitution from Atlanta, Georgia · 78

Atlanta, Georgia
Issue Date:
Saturday, January 19, 1985
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am " " v .-i A?"1 Ijt ZwwwZliw, affile I - V. - 1 1 i s 4. I ) THE STOV ALL HOUSE: Owners Ham and Kathy Schwartz.' JOHN HARMONSpoal IFof a Saiuiftee Valley stoy Stovall House, Towering Oaks and Hilltop Haus Cleveland DoMonagal p29J I " GEORGIA SECOND IN A SERIES By John Harmon Special to Tht Journal-Constitution 4 Atl--'0 ,U. SAUTEE, Ga. Moses Harshaw was the meanest man ever to live in the Sautee Valley. Legend has it that Harshaw was away when his daughter died. The grief-stricken mother dressed her be loved in a beautiful gown for eternity. "When Moses came home and heard his wife paid $12 for the dress, he had the girl due up so he could see it," said Ham Schwartz, the owner of Harshaw's 1837-vinUge farmhouse. Such antics did not endear the house to locals 150 years ago. But today it is a hospitality focal point in the Historic and picturesque aautee valley. Ham and Kathy Schwarti restored the two-story house and opened it as a bed-and breakfast inn a year ago. Named the Stovall House in honor of the family who, from the 1890s to the 1940s, added much to the structure, the inn is located in a valley dotted with his toric buildings. Many are on the National Register of His toric Places or, like the Stovall House, soon will be. The Sautee Valley and adjacent Nacoochee Valley the two Join and are considered one community by locals have been spared commercialization and insensitive development, giving it a charm found in few places elsewhere in the state. . The Sautee area preserves a working century-old wa ter-powered grist mill, an 1895 covered bridge, an old-fashioned country store, Indian mounds and four pretty churches, including 1870 8 crescent Hill Baptist Church, called "the most photographed church in Georgia." "The valley is full of people who make a living off their own talents," said the 35-year-old Schwartz, who left a chief engineer's job at an Atlanta hospital to be an innkeeper. From the outside, the whitewashed house with green shutters and matching green roof looks much the same as it did during the 1890s. A portion of the back porch has been glassed in and serves as an all-season dining area with a lovely view across pastureland to thickly wooded Lynch Mountain. From the back yard, the higher Blue Ridge Mountains can be seen. Each of the five guest rooms has its own wall-stencil Eattern, on which Mrs. Schwartz spent many painstaking ours, and its own bath, fitted with circa-1900 replica fixtures. The house is furnished with antiques, but there is not a television to be found. Unlike most bed-and-breakfast inns, Stovall House serves lunch and dinner, featuring American and continental cuisine. Briefly How to get there: Take 1-85 north to Ga. 365 north to Gainesville. Take U.S. 129 north to Cleveland, then follow Ga. 75 north toward Helen to Ga. 17. Take a right and travel two miles along the Nacoochee Valley to Ga. 255 and turn left. Stovall House is about two miles on the right. Rates: $25 per person and up. Children under 12 free. Breakfast included. 1-878-3355. Towering Oaks Bed and Breakfast Inn opened last autumn with five guest rooms and 60 acres of woods and pasture to explore. Innkeeper Laura Summers says her place is especially suited to families, because it is well off the highway but only minutes from shops, restaurants and other modern conveniences. Tower Oaks' centerpiece is the den shared by all the guests. It has a fireplace, television, books and several comfortable chairs. Mrs. Summers' breakfast specialty is homemade bread, along with fruit, cheese, boiled eggs, juice, coffee and herb tea. Husband Stan can offer directions to good fishing spots and hiking trails. Briefly How to get there: Take Ga. 75 north from Cleveland for about 4 miles. Turn left on paved road at Windy Acres subdivision sign and go .2 miles to a gravel road on left. Go .3 miles to the inn. Rate: Off-season, $30 per couple. Easter through early November, $50 per couple. Small children free. $2 charge for each extra person per room. 1-865-6760. Frankie Tysor's Hilltop Haus overlooks Helen and the Chattahoochee River and is within an easy walk to the "sins" of Helen, one of only two Georgia mountain towns that sell both hard liquor and beer and wine by the bottle or glass. Open since April 1982, the Hilltop Haus is one of the few bed-and-breakfast inns to serve a full-fledged country morning meal. Maybe that is because Ms. Tysor's contemporary brick and wood bouse is a favorite among hikers; she offers a shuttle service to the trails of the nearby Chattahoochee National Forest There are three rooms in the main part of the inn. One has a private bath; the other two share a large bathroom. Downstairs is a room with a kitchenette that is large enough for two couples. Briefly How to get there: Take Ga. 75 north from Cleveland, to Helen. After crossing the Chattahoochee River bridge, take first right (Chattahoochee Street) and go uphill .4 miles. Inn on the right. Retes: $35 per couple, $45 per couple for efficiency. During Helen's Oktoberfest (through Feb. 16). $45 and $60. 1-878-2388. NEXT: Bedding down in the Blue Ridge mountains. fi'nil' i i ii 6.. Yhi Atlanta Journal WEEKEND The Atlanta Constitution January 19, 1985

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