Community Information PageBurke County was one of Georgia's original eight counties. Originally organized as the Parish of St. George, Burke County was named for English political writer, member of the British Parliament and supporter of the colonies' interests, Edmond Burke.
The county sprawls over 835.1 square miles of east central Georgia between Augusta and Savannah. Incorporated Feb. 5, 1777, Burke County had a population of 20,981 at last census. Waynesboro is the county seat. Keysville, Midville and Sardis are also incorporated cities within the county.
Known as the "Bird Dog Capital of the World," Waynesboro was named for General Anthony "Mad Anthony" Wayne, a famous Revolutionary soldier.
Georgia Power Company's Alvin W. Vogtle Nuclear Power Plant is located in the county on the Savannah River and began operation in the late 1980s. Plans are being made now to build two additional reactors at Plant Vogtle with site plans approved in April 2006.
Burke County claims 10 Georgia Governors by birth, residence, or marriage. Lyman Hall, Georgia signer of the Declaration of Independence and member of the Continental Congress, had a plantation in the county. The other nine Governors with Burke County ties are John Houston, Samuel Elbert, Edward Telfair, Jared Irwin, James Jackson, David Emanuel, William Schley, Herschel V. Johnson and Hoke Smith.
Burke County is home of numerous festivals and special events. The Georgia Field Trials is one of the nation's oldest hunting dog competitions. The Redbreast Festival in Midville celebrates the Ogeechee River's unique variety of redbreasted bream. Other events include the Cotton Country Festival, the Tour of Homes and Christmas on Liberty Square, all in Waynesboro.