The Georgia of Jesus Davidson

Cotton Patch Gospel is filled with references to real places in the state of Georgia, and elsewhere in the South. Those unfamiliar with the state may not grasp the geography of the story, and so just as many Bibles contain maps of the Holy Land and significant locations from the Gospels, these are the places referenced in Cotton Patch Gospel.

Jesus' Journey (in chronological order):

  • Clayton: The hometown of Mary Hagler, mother of Jesus.
  • Gainesville: The birthplace of Jesus Davidson.
  • Valdosta: The town where Jesus grew up.
  • Chattahoochee River: Running from northeast Georgia to the Alabama border, where John the Baptizer baptized Jesus and many others
  • Ogeechee River: Where Jesus recruits his first disciples, the fishermen Rock and Andy.
  • Stone Mountain: The site of Jesus' sermon on the mount.
  • Unadilla: Home of the Unadilla Travel Lodge, where Jesus first informs his disciples that he is to be lynched after they go to Atlanta.
  • Atlanta: The capital of Georgia, and the site of several events in Jesus' life. It was the home of Governors Herod, Harvey, and Pilate. It was host to the annual Sunday School Teachers' Conference that Jesus visited when he was twelve. And it was where Jesus was arrested and convicted.
  • Leesburg: Where Jesus was lynched.

In addition, there are several towns referenced that other people hail from, but Jesus does not necessarily travel to himself:

  • Opp: In Covington County, Alabama. One of the ancestral hometowns of the Hagler family.
  • Savannah: Where Jesus goes to preach the good news following his forty days in the wilderness. Also home to the Rev. Boyd Bissel, whose question at Stone Mountain starts off "Turn It Around."
  • Brewton: Home of the Apostles Phil and Nat.
  • Sylvan Hills: An Atlanta community that was home to the man who provided the tomb for Jesus' body.
  • Opa-locka: In Miami-Dade County, Florida. This, and the remaining towns, are listed as places where people came from to see John the Baptizer.
  • Oneonta: In Blount County, Alabama.
  • Two Egg: In Jackson County, Florida.
  • Cordele: In Crisp County, Georgia.
  • Ty Ty: In Tift County, Georgia.
  • Gluck: In Anderson County, South Carolina.

Finally, on a geography-related note, when Jesus first meets Matthew, he gives his Social Security number as 420-62-0227. The first five digits of an SSN indicate where and when the number was assigned. According to the Social Security Death Index, SS numbers beginning with 420-62 were issued in Alabama, mostly to people born in the mid-to-late 1940s.

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