Created in 1818 from Cherokee and Creek cessions, Gwinnett is an original county. Courts, elections, and sheriff sales were held, first, in the home of Elisha Winn, 1 mile east of the Appalachee River. Selected to buy a permanent site for the county town, Winn purchased Lot 146, consisting of 250 acres in the Fifth Land District, for $200 from John Breedlove of Hancock County who had drawn it in the lottery.
First County Officers, commissioned in March, 1819, were: William Blake, Sheriff; James Wardlaw, Clerk Superior Court; Thomas A. Dobbs, Clerk Inferior Court; John Wynn, Corner; James C. Reed, Surveyor; James Loughridge, Tax Collector; John W. Beauchamp, Tax Receiver.
In 1849, the four corner lots on the public square were deeded to Charles H. Smith (Bill Arp), N.L. Hutchins, James P. Simmons, and T.W. Alexander, lawyers, so long as they maintained a substantial fence around the square to keep out wandering livestock. The first fence under this agreement was eight feet high with a stile on each side.