Lou Reeta Barton Northcutt Walking Trail/Native Garden
This Trail leads visitors from the Bennett History Museum to the Native Garden area. Here you will find a variety of native plants. This is an interesting and educational experience. Native Americans and early settlers possessed confidence in the old-fashioned Indian remedies using the plants native to this region. Many of these plants were used for medicinal purposes and were thought to provide a remedy for various illnesses. Indians believe that when God made this earth, every plant had a purpose. Gardener volunteers continue to add native plants to the Native Garden. Information about the plants has been printed in a brochure prepared by volunteers and the Cherokee Master Gardeners. Each plant in this area is identified by number. The common name and the Latin name is listed, as well as how it was used by the Cherokee Indians. Click here to see the brochure.
Each spring, visitors can see pink Lady's Slippers, an endangered species, in bloom. Several varieties of Trilliums are also in bloom in early spring. Visitors will see Wild Ginger, Foamflowers, Solomon's Seal, and Rue Anemone. Native Oakleaf Hydrangeas bloom in June, and many types of trees are also located on the Trail. Click here for a map of the trail to the Settlement.
The Trail is named in memory of Lou Retta Barton Northcutt. When Lou Reeta was 21, she graduated from Reinhardt University, but she stayed on an additional year to study art and music. Her father, James Monroe Barton, was a farmer and Methodist minister in Pine Log, Ga. He and his wife had 14 children and gave each $200 towards their education so they could attend Reinhardt University. Many Barton family members attended Reinhardt through the years. Lou Reeta became a teacher in Cobb County. She never had children of her own. She loved Reinhardt, and her family decided to donate funds for the Native Garden and Walking Trail in her memory.
Dr. Joseph Kitchens, Executive Director of the Funk Heritage Center, is proud of the work volunteers recently accomplished to improve this beautiful setting. He said, "Plants native to Georgia are part of our heritage, and we want to have a place where visitors can learn about them and understand how important they were to the Native Americans and early settlers. This natural area will be used to educate children and adults, and it adds another interesting venue to our museum."