ROADTRIP: Highway 106 Through Carnesville Is a Wonderful Example of Why to Drive the Backroads

By D. Lanier Shook                     June 21, 2019

When we travel its not just where we’re going that matters, but how we get there. Last year my sister and I drove down to Athens, Georgia (read about the double cannon I saw there in this article). When we stopped at the awesome Georgia Welcome Center just past the South Carolina line I looked over the map and noticed Highway 106 seemed a slightly more direct route to Athens. Not only was it a more direct route it provided the perfect example why getting off the beaten track can be a great idea. Here are a few of the photos I took along the way to show you exactly what I mean.

Beautiful Franklin County courthouse in Carnesville, Georgia — a charming Southern town.


Carnesville was a charming treat, but later down the road I discovered that if you pay attention to the scenery, sometimes you’ll find a real treasure. If I hadn’t been paying attention I would’ve missed the Cromer’s Mill Covered Bridge. To get to it I took a left turn off Highway 106, then a right down somebody’s driveway past their house to the covered bridge. Then I parked and walked out to it. This next photo gives some idea of how concealed it is.


This photo shows how Cromer’s Mill Covered Bridge is truly tucked away out of sight.

The inside of the bridge was a real treat because of the wooden pegs I tried to show in this photo. Look at those — well worth the walk down the road.

Mount Hermon Presbyterian Church — very remarkable in its own right.

Side roads lead through small towns and each small town has its own treasures. The next photo is of the Mount Hermon Presbyterian Church in Ila, Georgia. The church is beautiful, but the real note worthy part is the cemetery. Out of respect I’m not showing the photo of it, but one of the gravemarkers was composed of three full sized six to seven foot tall columns with Corinthian capitals. Obviously someone cared dearly about whoever was buried there.

While there were quite a few memorable sights along the road to Athens, I only have time to share one more with you. This is what appeared to be a very old church sitting right across from Union Baptist Church that was founded in 1848 — according to their website. Given the cemetery next to the structure I’m going to guess its the old Union Baptist Church, although I could be completely mistaken. It was an amazing structure and a real treat for an architecture enthusiast like me.

That’s something you don’t see that often anymore.

I hope you all enjoyed this little trip down Highway 106. Take the time to get off the beaten path and travel the old roads. You never know what you may find.

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