Contrary to popular myth, Georgia was neither a debtor's nor a penal Colony. Only a bare handful of settlers were ever sent to the colony of Georgia who were debtors. For those needing proof of the this fact or for those seeking information on someone who may have been one of the first Georgians, see E. Merton Coulter and Albert Saye, A LIST OF EARLY SETTLERS OF GEORGIA. (Athens, Ga.; University of Georgia press 1949)
For researchers interested in ancestors who were sent to America as convicts, see Peter W. Coldman, ENGLISH CONVICTS IN COLONIAL AMERICA 1617-1775, 2 Volumes. (New Orleans, La.: Polyanthos Press 1975.), and Clifford Neal Smith, BRITISH DEPORTEES TO AMERICA (1974)
I feel this research may help break through some brick walls.
Early in Georgia's Statehood (1798) divorces were legally allowed & illegitimate children were allowed to petition to have their names changed to that of their father. This information is preserved at The Georgia Dept. of Archives & History. However, the information on name changes and divorces has also been published in: Carrol Hart, "Genealogical Information Found in Legislative Acts --- Divorces" GEORGIA GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY QUARTERLY 1 (1965): 9-19 Covers 1798 to 1847 when divorces could be granted on the County level. also: John Mosely, "NAME CHANGES IN LEGISLATIVE ACTS OF GEORGIA, 1800-1856" (Atlanta 1979) Arthur R. Rowland, "Names Changed legally in Georgia, 1800- 1856" By NATIONAL GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY QUARTERLY 55 (1967) : 177-210
Finding ORPHANS in GEORGIA
Names of Orphans, or Illegitimate children, and children of convicts can be found in the published lists of Georgia's LAND LOTTERIES and the loose land lottery papers, particularly: Virginia S. & Ralph Wood, The 1805 LAND LOTTERY OF GEORGIA (Cambridge:Greenwood Press 1964) Orphans are indicated in this book.
Silas E. Lucas, Jr. The 1807 LAND LOTTERY OF GEORGIA (Easley S. C.: Southern Historical Press, 1968) Orphans are indicated. Also THE 1820 & 1821 LAND LOTTERIES OF GEORGIA (1973) Note: BOTH LOTTERIES indicate Orphans and in 1821 Lottery Children of CONVICTS who were treated like Orphans. also, THE 1832 GOLD LOTTERY of GEORGIA (1976) Orphans are indicated here also.
Martha Lou Houston, The 1827 LAND LOTTERY OF GEORGIA (1928: rep. Easley S.C. .: Southern Historical Press, 1975) Orphans and Illegitimates are Indicated. Children of convicts are treated as Orphans.
I ALSO will be searching for these Books myself.