The Genealogy Research Center
& Old Jail Museum

129 Jones Street, Sandersville, GA 31082

The Genealogy Research Center

The Genealogy Research Center is located in the Old Washington County Jail on the Square in Downtown Sandersville. The center has an extensive library that includes family histories, obituary, burial, cemetery records, local history books, Revolutionary and Confederate records, land records, US and Georgia Census records, maps, photos, local history books, and much more. The library has a digital database of Sandersville newspapers covering over 200 years of local and regional history. The database information is searchable by queries of topics, names, events, or related words. Genealogical researchers are available to guide you through your searches.


Every family has a story; let us help you find yours!

The Old County Jail

Built in 1891, the beautiful Victorian Era building joined the sheriff's home and the county jail. Upon completing a more modern jail in 1977, the newly chartered Washington County Historical moved into the house and building home, establishing the historic site as Washington County's first historical museum.


Tours are available at the museum. Visitors can view the jail cells with the original mechanical locking mechanisms, see the cell wall graffiti left by former inmates, and visit Essie English's former bedroom. Essie was the daughter of Sheriff Wilson Matthew English and was tragically killed in 1901 when her nightgown caught fire in the bedroom's fireplace. Essie is said to occupy the house still and often likes making her presence known to the Historical Society's staff.

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