Haralson County, Georgia Ghost Towns

Haralson County, Georgia Ghost Towns

     In the 1890's Ralph L. Spencer invited some Hungarian wine-making families to settle on 2,000 acres of land near Tallapoosa. Budapest was the largest of the towns and was four miles east of Tallapoosa. It was named in honor of the capital of Hungry. A nearby village was named Tokaj in honor of a wine-producing region in Hungry and had lots larger than ten acre. By 1896 the vineyards covered approximately 12,726 acres of land in Haralson County.

A second town site named Nitra, was established under the guidance of a Catholic priest, Father Janisek, by a group of Slovakians. The colony (Budapest, Nitra and Tokaj) quickly flourished into a town with sixty buildings including a Catholic Church, stores and a post office. Soon the sloping hills were covered with grape vines. Wineries were planned and storage vats were prepared.

It looked as if the South & Georgia had a new industry. Then in 1907, the Georgia Prohibition Act was passed. The wine industry in Georgia came to a halt. The families were forced to look elsewhere for their livelihood and one by one left Haralson County.

All that remains today of this once thriving community is the Budapest and the Estvanko Cemeteries and the Catholic Rectory in Nitra (Now being used by a local family as their home.)


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