Cross the Georgia-Tennessee Line in the Town of McCaysville
McCaysville, chartered in 1904, is located on the Georgia-Tennessee state line adjacent to Copperhill, Tennessee, its twin city. You can actually have one foot in Georgia and one foot in Tennessee when you cross the Blue Line marking the place where the states meet. Toccoa Avenue (Georgia) turns into Ocoee Street (Tennessee) while the Toccoa River becomes the Ocoee River under an old iron bridge built in 1911 and still standing.
Actually, Copperhill was originally called McCays and McCaysville was Hawkinsville!! H.T. McCay bought a farm on the Copperhill side of the river and Aaron Matthews bought a farm on the other side. They built a ferry where the old river bridge is now.Discovery of copper occurred in 1843 in an area now known as Ducktown. By 1847, it is recorded that 90 cakes of ore were transported over poor trails to the railroad at Dalton. In the spring of 1899 the Tennessee Copper Company began smelting works near McCays and the town grew rapidly. Grading for the company railroad began and a shaft was sunk for the Burra Burra Mine in Ducktown. Learn more about the mining history of the Copper Basin at the Burra Burra Mine historic mine site in Ducktown.Today, mining has ended and the towns of McCaysville and Copperhill rely more on tourism. The 1996 Olympic Games increased tourism in the area when the Ocoee Whitewater Center was built for the Olympic kayak competition.
The Blue Ridge Scenic Railway has increased tourism in the area, and today Toccoa-Ocoee Street is lined with antique and specialty shops, art galleries and eateries.