Our Georgia History

Cason J. Callaway
November 6, 1894 Cason J. Callaway born
  Cason J. Callaway
May 21, 1952 Callaway Gardens opens (it was called Ida Cason's Gardens at the time).
  Callaway Gardens
  Cason J. Callaway
September 16, 1952 The Cason J. Callaway, a merchant marine ship named for the Georgia textile magnate, makes her initial voyage.
  Cason J. Callaway
April 12, 1961 Textile magnate Cason J. Callaway, who founded Callaway Gardens, dies
  Cason J. Callaway

Founder of Callaway Gardens, Cason Jewell Callaway was an innovator. When he managed a waste cotton mill (where leftover cotton is processed into rugs), he devised a method to weave the rugs from the cotton instead. Sales took off and soon the Callaways were buying waste cotton from other mills. Eventually, Callaway, with his father, formed Callaway Mills from their own and other, smaller operations which they bought. He served as president of the American Cotton Manufacturers' Association, an influential group of comprised mostly Southern cotton mills in Washington, D. C.

As a naval officer during World War I he had great respect for Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who serve as Assistant Secretary of the Navy and later as its Secretary. He became good friends with Roosevelt when the future President began using Warm Springs as a treatment center.

After his retirement in the 1930's he became deeply involved in improving agricultural sciences and working on his beloved estate at Blue Springs. He personally developed the business-funded Georgia Better Farm program, where county extension agents helped teach farmers modern agri-business techniques. He also preserved both Blue Springs and the surrounding watershed.

In 1948 Callaway conceived the idea of a garden on land that he and his wife Virginia owned. He named it in honor of his mother, Ida Cason Gardens. In 1955 he added the Callaway name. After his death in 1961 the name was simplified to Callaway Gardens to honor the entire family.

In 2001, his son, Cason J. Callaway, Jr., founded Callaway Blue Springs Water Company in Harris County, Georgia, bottling the water from Cason's beloved Blue Springs and sharing it with the world.

See also:
Callaway Gardens

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