Forsyth, Georgia, (population 4,300) was established in 1822 in the newly created county of Monroe, located in the center of the state. Forsyth was incorporated and became the county seat in 1823.
The city was named in honor of John Forsyth, an American political leader born in Virginia. Forsyth served in the U.S. House of Representatives, the U.S. Senate, as governor of Georgia from 1827-1829, and later as secretary of state from 1834-1841.
The city of Forsyth experienced intensive commercial growth between the mid-19th and early 20th centuries, thanks to the arrival of the railroad in 1838, 19th century cotton farming, and the 1849 opening of Tift College, the second oldest female college in the world.
Recently, Forsyth and the Monroe County Chamber of Commerce rehabilitated the historic Forsyth City Hall, built in 1897, to serve as a regional heritage tourism center. The town’s Commercial Historic District includes the Monroe County Courthouse, constructed in 1896, as well as surrounding blocks of structures from the mid-to-late 1800s. Many of these are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Another historical attraction is the Depot Complex, which includes the town’s first railway depot, built in 1844, that served as an unloading point for wounded Confederate troops; a Victorian structure built in 1898; and the 1917 freight depot. Today, these facilities host a museum, community meeting rooms, and a genealogy center that houses more than 200,000 historical documents.
Other city attractions include the Confederate Cemetery, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and the Rum Creek Wildlife Management Area.
Each spring, Forsyth holds the Forsythia Festival in Courthouse Square, featuring arts and crafts, sporting events, live entertainment, and food.
Designated a Preserve America Community in August 2008.