Tuesday, July 10, 2012


The word for "Cohutta" is thought to come from a Cherokee word, "gahuti" or "ga-hut-yi," meaning the poles of the shed, referring to the Cohutta mountains as the poles that hold up the sky. (See note, below).*

Several landmarks, places, and businesses in the Southeast bear the name of Cohutta or Cohuttah. In North Georgia, there are the Cohutta Mountains (part of the Appalachian Mountain Chain) various Cohutta Springs communities (discussed within this blog), and the unrelated town of Cohutta in Whitfield County, Georgia.

*NOTE: More about this reference will be given later. The definition for Cohutta appears in quite a few local histories, that have it as meaning "poles of the shed" or "frog." A year or so ago, I tracked the original reference down to an old trade journal or encyclopedia. I further traced the word origin and found one Cherokee language site in which syllables similar to ga-hut-yi (but not exact) did add up to meaning shed poles. I did not find anything among the various words for "frog" or "toad" that resembled gahuta, gahuti, or Cohutta, and I had to wonder if people had confused several words. A part of the same mountain chain, in Tennessee, is called "Big Frog." In a more recent casual search of Cherokee pronunciation databases, I couldn't find anything that resembled any word that sounded like Cohutta or gahuti. I'll try to find my notes and give more detailed references on these facts.

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