Ocmulgee River
The Ocmulgee River is a tributary of the Altamaha River
Altamaha River
The Altamaha River is a major river of the American state of Georgia. It flows generally eastward for 137 miles from its origin at the confluence of the Oconee River and Ocmulgee River towards the Atlantic Ocean, where it empties into the ocean near Brunswick, Georgia. There are no dams...

, approximately 255 mi (410 km) long, in the U.S. state
U.S. state
A U.S. state is any one of the 50 federated states of the United States of America that share sovereignty with the federal government. Because of this shared sovereignty, an American is a citizen both of the federal entity and of his or her state of domicile. Four states use the official title of...

 of Georgia
Georgia (U.S. state)
Georgia is a state located in the southeastern United States. It was established in 1732, the last of the original Thirteen Colonies. The state is named after King George II of Great Britain. Georgia was the fourth state to ratify the United States Constitution, on January 2, 1788...

. Noted for its relatively unspoiled and gentle current, it provides the principal drainage for a large section of the Piedmont
Piedmont (United States)
The Piedmont is a plateau region located in the eastern United States between the Atlantic Coastal Plain and the main Appalachian Mountains, stretching from New Jersey in the north to central Alabama in the south. The Piedmont province is a physiographic province of the larger Appalachian division...

 and coastal plain
Coastal plain
A coastal plain is an area of flat, low-lying land adjacent to a seacoast and separated from the interior by other features. One of the world's longest coastal plains is located in eastern South America. The southwestern coastal plain of North America is notable for its species diversity...

 of central Georgia.


It is formed in north central Georgia southeast of Atlanta
Atlanta, Georgia
Atlanta is the capital and most populous city in the U.S. state of Georgia. According to the 2010 census, Atlanta's population is 420,003. Atlanta is the cultural and economic center of the Atlanta metropolitan area, which is home to 5,268,860 people and is the ninth largest metropolitan area in...

 by the confluence of the Yellow
Yellow River (Georgia)
The Yellow River is a tributary of the Ocmulgee River in the U.S. state Georgia.The river rises north of Lawrenceville in Gwinnett County and flows south through the outer eastern suburbs of Atlanta, passing through the easternmost corner of DeKalb County before entering Rockdale County...

, South
South River (Ocmulgee River)
The South River is a tributary of the Ocmulgee River in the U.S. state of Georgia. It originates in the city of East Point in Fulton County and eventually flows into Lake Jackson, joining the Yellow River and the Alcovy River to form the Ocmulgee....

, and Alcovy
Alcovy River
The Alcovy River is a tributary of the Ocmulgee River in north-central Georgia in the United States. Via the Ocmulgee River, it is part of the watershed of the Altamaha River, which flows to the Atlantic Ocean.-Course:...

 rivers, which join as arms of the Lake Jackson
Lake Jackson (Georgia)
Jackson Lake is one of the oldest reservoirs in Georgia, southeast of Atlanta in a rural area situated within parts of three counties . The Lloyd Shoals Dam was built in 1910 by Central Georgia Power Company, and electricity was originally generated for the city of Macon...

 reservoir. It flows southeast past Macon
Macon, Georgia
Macon is a city located in central Georgia, US. Founded at the fall line of the Ocmulgee River, it is part of the Macon metropolitan area, and the county seat of Bibb County. A small portion of the city extends into Jones County. Macon is the biggest city in central Georgia...

, founded on the fall line
Fall line
A fall line is a geomorphologic unconformity between an upland region of relatively hard crystalline basement rock and a coastal plain of softer sedimentary rock. A fall line is typically prominent when crossed by a river, for there will often be rapids or waterfalls...

, and joins the Oconee
Oconee River
The Oconee River is a river which has its origin in Hall County, Georgia, and terminates where it joins the Ocmulgee River to form the Altamaha River near Lumber City at the borders of Montgomery County, Wheeler County, and Jeff Davis County. South of Athens, two forks, known as the North Oconee...

 from the northwest to form the Altamaha
Altamaha River
The Altamaha River is a major river of the American state of Georgia. It flows generally eastward for 137 miles from its origin at the confluence of the Oconee River and Ocmulgee River towards the Atlantic Ocean, where it empties into the ocean near Brunswick, Georgia. There are no dams...

 near Lumber City
Lumber City, Georgia
Lumber City is a city located in Telfair County, Georgia. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 1,247.- Geography :Lumber City is located at 31°55'48" North, 82°41'1" West ....


Downstream from Lake Jackson, the river flows freely and is considered relatively unspoiled among the rivers of the region. Its low gradient of approximately 1 ft/mile (24 cm/km) gives it a wide and peaceful current along most of its course; it is a popular destination for canoe
A canoe or Canadian canoe is a small narrow boat, typically human-powered, though it may also be powered by sails or small electric or gas motors. Canoes are usually pointed at both bow and stern and are normally open on top, but can be decked over A canoe (North American English) or Canadian...

ing. It receives treated wastewater from 13 facilities along its course. The river is a popular destination for catfish
Catfishes are a diverse group of ray-finned fish. Named for their prominent barbels, which resemble a cat's whiskers, catfish range in size and behavior from the heaviest and longest, the Mekong giant catfish from Southeast Asia and the second longest, the wels catfish of Eurasia, to detritivores...

ing and bass
Bass (fish)
Bass is a name shared by many different species of popular gamefish. The term encompasses both freshwater and marine species. All belong to the large order Perciformes, or perch-like fishes, and in fact the word bass comes from Middle English bars, meaning "perch."-Types of basses:*The temperate...


On June 2, 1932 George W Perry caught the world-record Largemouth Bass in Montgomery Lake in Telfair County, Georgia
Telfair County, Georgia
Telfair County is a county located in the U.S. state of Georgia. As of the 2000 U.S. Census, the population was 11,794. The 2007 Census Estimate shows a population of 13,366...

. The fish weighed 22 1/4 pounds. While the record has not been broken, it was tied in 2010. Montgomery Lake, now shallow and silted in, was an oxbow lake
Oxbow lake
An oxbow lake is a U-shaped body of water formed when a wide meander from the main stem of a river is cut off to create a lake. This landform is called an oxbow lake for the distinctive curved shape, named after part of a yoke for oxen. In Australia, an oxbow lake is called a billabong, derived...

 on the Ocmulgee River.


The banks of the river were inhabited by the Mississippian culture
Mississippian culture
The Mississippian culture was a mound-building Native American culture that flourished in what is now the Midwestern, Eastern, and Southeastern United States from approximately 800 CE to 1500 CE, varying regionally....

 between the 10th and 12th centuries. The river passes the remnants of several prehistoric Native American
Native Americans in the United States
Native Americans in the United States are the indigenous peoples in North America within the boundaries of the present-day continental United States, parts of Alaska, and the island state of Hawaii. They are composed of numerous, distinct tribes, states, and ethnic groups, many of which survive as...

 villages at Ocmulgee National Monument
Ocmulgee National Monument
Ocmulgee National Monument preserves traces of over ten millennia of Southeastern Native American culture, including major earthworks built more than 1,000 years ago by Mississippian culture peoples: the Great Temple and other ceremonial mounds, a burial mound, and defensive trenches...

 in Macon. For this reason the Ocmulgee site is also referred to as the "Macon Plateau". It was established around 950 CE by a population that most likely migrated from the Tennessee River Valley based on pottery evidence. The inhabitants established a chiefdom, which was common for the Mississippian area. The site is home to eight, distantly-spaced, large platform mounds and an earth lodge. Within the lodge there were forty-seven seats that formed a bench around the perimeter of the room. Opposing this bench was a three seated bench in the shape of an eagle effigy that would most likely seat the chiefdom leaders. In 1150 CE, the site was abandoned until 1540. In 1540 Spanish
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 explorer Hernando de Soto
Hernando de Soto (explorer)
Hernando de Soto was a Spanish explorer and conquistador who, while leading the first European expedition deep into the territory of the modern-day United States, was the first European documented to have crossed the Mississippi River....

 traversed the region and baptized
In Christianity, baptism is for the majority the rite of admission , almost invariably with the use of water, into the Christian Church generally and also membership of a particular church tradition...

 Native American converts in the river. This expedition devastated much of the area and left a trail of disease as well. In the 18th century, the Hitchiti, later part of the Creek Indian confederation, lived near present-day Macon in Ocmulgee Fields. The name of the river probably comes from a Hitchiti
The Hitchiti were a Muskogean-speaking tribe formerly residing chiefly in a town of the same name on the east bank of the Chattahoochee River, 4 miles below Chiaha, in west Georgia. They spoke the Hitchiti language, which was mutually intelligible with Mikasuki; both tribes were part of the loose...

 words oki, "water", plus molki, "bubbling" or "boiling".

In 1806, the U.S. acquired the area between the Oconee and Ocmulgee from the Creek Indians by the First Treaty of Washington. That same year United States Army
United States Army
The United States Army is the main branch of the United States Armed Forces responsible for land-based military operations. It is the largest and oldest established branch of the U.S. military, and is one of seven U.S. uniformed services...

 established Fort Benjamin Hawkins
Fort Benjamin Hawkins
Fort Hawkins was a fort built in 1806-1809 in the historic Creek Nation by the United States government under President Thomas Jefferson and used until 1821...

 overlooking the Ocmulgee Fields. In 1819 the Creek Indians held their last meeting at Ocmulgee Fields. In the same year, the McCall brother established a barge-building operation at Macon. The first steamboat arrived on the river in 1829. During the 19th century, the river provided the principal water navigation route for Macon, allowing the development of the cotton
Cotton is a soft, fluffy staple fiber that grows in a boll, or protective capsule, around the seeds of cotton plants of the genus Gossypium. The fiber is almost pure cellulose. The botanical purpose of cotton fiber is to aid in seed dispersal....

 industry in the surrounding region. In 1842 the river was connected by railroad to Savannah
Savannah, Georgia
Savannah is the largest city and the county seat of Chatham County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. Established in 1733, the city of Savannah was the colonial capital of the Province of Georgia and later the first state capital of Georgia. Today Savannah is an industrial center and an important...

. The river froze from bank to bank in 1886. In 1994 devastating floods on the river after heavy rains caused widespread damage around Macon.

Ocmulgee creeks

Major creeks that flow into the Ocmulgee River include:
  • Tucsawhatchee Creek
  • Echeconnee Creek
    • This tributary's name means "deer trap" in the Muscogee language, the language of the Creek indian
      Creek people
      The Muscogee , also known as the Creek or Creeks, are a Native American people traditionally from the southeastern United States. Mvskoke is their name in traditional spelling. The modern Muscogee live primarily in Oklahoma, Alabama, Georgia, and Florida...

      s. It refers to the steep incline of the creek where Creeks would trap deer, luring them into steep areas and then charging them.
  • Alligator Creek
  • Big Indian Creek
  • Coley Creek
  • Big Horse Creek
  • Flat Creek
  • Folsom Creek
  • Horse Creek
  • Jordan Creek
  • Limestone Creek
  • Little Ocmulgee River (Gum Swamp Creek)
  • Little Shellstone Creek
  • Little Sturgeon Creek
  • Mossy Creek
  • Otter Creek
  • Richland Creek
    Richland Creek
    Richland Creek is a river in Texas.Richland Creek is also the name of the main creek flowing through Belleville, Illinois, and is a tributary to the Kaskaskia River.-References:**USGS Hydrologic Unit Map - State of Texas...

  • Sandy Run Creek
  • Savage Creek
  • Shellstone Creek
  • South Shellstone Creek
  • Sturgeon Creek
  • Sugar Creek
  • Ten Mile Creek

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.