Known as Clinton's oldest house, the Macarthy~Pope house is believed to have been built between 1809 and 1810. Benjamin and William Trapp owned the dwelling between 1818 and 1832. During the latter two years of their ownership Benjamin Trapp served as the Sheriff of Jones County. Charles Bernard Macarthy, Esq. purchased the house in 1832, making this his home until his death in November 1861. For most of the years from 1826 until his passing, Charles Macarthy was the Ordinary of Jones County and the Clerk of the important Inferior Court. He died in office as Ordinary and Clerk of the Superior Court.
His father, Roger Bernard Macarthy, Esq., an original settler of Clinton, was the town's first post master. Even before Clinton's founding in September 1808 Roger Macarthy had been appointed in April of that year Clerk of the Court of Ordinary. Later he served as a Justice of the Inferior Court of Jones County. Macarthy, b.1858, was a native of Ireland (the family from County Cork). He was allied by blood with some of the most historical names of Ireland. Participation in the "affair of ?93" caused Roger to leave Ireland in June of 1793. He settled in New York, where Charles was born in 1798.
Roger Macarthy is also likely the person who gave Clinton her name. George and DeWitt Clinton were both outstanding New York statesmen of States Rights principles and would have been well known to Macarthy.
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After the War for Southern Independence, Mrs. Margaret E. Pope and Miss Rosetta Worsham, affectionately known as Miss Pope and Miss Zet, were sisters who ran the Clinton post office from this house, also their home, until 1915. From that time until it was abandoned in 1940, it was used as a tenant dwelling.
The first major project of the Old Clinton Historical Society was the acquisition of the Macarthy~Pope house and three and a half adjacent acres in 1976. This property includes the 1842 two-story stone jail, the site of the 1820s Mansion House hotel of Hope Hull Slater, and a part of the Butler Spring Reserve.
The house was near collapse from time, neglect, and kudzu. During dismantling of the house, each piece of the structure was removed by hand, photographed, labeled, and stored in the Society's barn. The wood, mortar, nails, paint, brick, and wallpaper were researched, and fragments of glass were sent to Williamsburg, Virginia for analysis.
In 1982, for its six years of hard work to restore the Macarthy~Pope House, the Society was rewarded by the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation with its prestigious award for outstanding restoration.
For years each spring re-enactors have portrayed on these grounds the two battles fought in Jones County during the Confederate War, the Battle of Sunshine Church and the Battle of Griswoldville.