About 1826, Dr. Chapmon Powell erected a log cabin beside the Shallowford Trail near this site. His Indian patients called it the "Medicine House." His cabin had been relocated onto this site by 1863 when Powell's son-in-law, Washington Jackson Houston (pronounced Hows-ton) purchased about 600 acs. of Powell's farm lands, enlarged the cabin, and built a mill on the South Fork of Peachtree Creek. Powell's original log cabin is now part of the plantation complex at Stone Mountain.
On July 18, 1864, war came to this site as Federal troops advancing on Atlanta and Decatur skirmished here. After the Battle of Atlanta, Gen. McPherson's remains were carried through Decatur to this site; then on to Sherman's headquarters at the Howard house.
In 1904, Houston and Dr. W.J.Houston Jr., converted his plantation's mill (off Houston Mill Rd. at Hahn Woods Commemorative Forest) into Decatur's first electric power generation plant. He also established the Houston Chapel at his wife's request, and until his death he conducted services in it for the rural community surrounding his farmlands.