Sometimes, it is just fun it get away from “doing life.” My favorite thing is to sink into history and imagine what life was like years ago. Hardman Farms is an easy place to do this. You can relax, take a tour, or go through the house on your own self guided tour.

I don’t know what I’ll do with all my photographs, and I don’t really care. It’s a hobby and I enjoy it best when I don’t make it stressful or more than it needs to be. It’s not a race or a competition! It’s just an opportunity to enjoy something that brings richness to my life.

I love these old bricks and the wreath adds so much character to this wall. Nature on the natural. Notice all the different colors and kinds of bricks. They were probably made in this area near Helen, GA. The tour guide to me that it was not the “gold rush” that made Helen so popular in the early 1900’s. It was lumber! While there were plenty of gold mines in the area, lumber was what grew the town. Hardman Farms is located outside of Helen, which means you don’t have to get tangled in the traffic that becomes bumper-to-bumper at times. Yeah.

Our tour guide was super knowledgeable! He was one of the best and really enjoyed his job. Hardman Farms is now connected to Smithgall Woods which is apart of the Georgia State Park system. The tours and the people working there are all retirement age and they are having a blast!

Every room on the lower level had a Christmas tree. This was the Hardman’s dining room; he was a Governor of Georgia but spent a great deal of time here at the farm.

Pat is looking back up the steps at me. Notice that the hallways were super wide for air circulation and moving in and out the larger trunks used for traveling. Also, notice the door on the right. It is screened because the doorway goes into the dining room. It helped to keep bugs out during warmer months.

You can see one of the old millstone in the foreground and in the background an old Indian burial mound. Our guide told us that these where constructed as burial mountain by Mississippi Indians and not Cherokee. Indians built these near rivers and the Chattahoochee River is on the other side of the mound.

This photo is of the Hardman’s lovely spring house. A spring house, or springhouse, is a small building, usually a single room, constructed over a spring. The original purpose of a springhouse was to keep the spring water clean by excluding fallen leaves, animals, etc., but the enclosed structure was also used for refrigeration since they were usually used before the advent of ice delivery and, later, electric refrigeration.

The water of the spring maintains a constant cool temperature inside the spring house throughout the year. Food that would otherwise spoil, such as meat, fruit, or dairy products (they had a dairy at the farm), could be kept cool and safe from animal depredations as well. Spring houses also served as pump houses and root cellars.

Hardman Farms is located on Highway 17 in the beautiful and historic Sautee Nacoochee Valley. Click here for more information on the Explore Georgia site!