Sautee Nacoochee, Georgia

Heritage Site Festivals

Folk Life Festival

Step back in time as history comes to life at the African American Heritage Site at Folk Life Festivals. Take a guided tour of the Nacoochee slave cabin (c. 1850) framed by nineteenth century landscaping and antebellum artifacts. Read the “interpretive laundry” and see the restoration craftsmanship and authentic period furnishings while docents describe 19th century life.

Listen for the tap and ping of hammers as local smiths craft wrought iron objects on the forge in the blacksmith shop. Witness folk life demonstrations of centuries-old skills: basket making, spinning, quilting, butter churning, wood carving, shingle spitting, corn shuck doll making, broom making, gold mining, open-hearth cooking, and other crafts and customs common to the early ettlers.

Take a turn at shelling corn or horse and buggy ride. Hear old-time tunes and learn about the origins of gourd banjos and cigar box guitars. Historical interpretations of life in the mid-1800 rural Northeast Georgia, re-enactors, “interpretive laundry” and folk life demonstrations immerse festival visitors in the heritage of Appalachian Mountain culture and customs, celebrating the common skills, tools and traditions of Native, European, and African American settlers.

Christmas at the Cabin

Traditional decorations and garlands adorn the Nacoochee cabin and Christmas trees. Bees wax, cinnamon, and balsam infuse the cabin with aromas of the yuletide season. The soft glow of lanterns and the ambience of an antebellum cabin warmed by a fire on the stone hearth transports visitors to an earlier time. Lift your spirits and join the chorus at this community gathering.

Tours of the cabin, music and caroling, candy canes, and visits with jolly old St. Nick are free to visitors. Mulled cider, gingerbread, and hand-crafted ornaments are available, including corn shuck crèche characters and creatures. Local musicians perform traditional tunes and songs of the season. Bring your kids and your camera.