Beeline Springs, Kite

Kite GA Little Ohoopee River Public Swimming Pool Overgrown Ruins Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2016

Approaching Kite from the east on Highway 57, you cross the Little Ohoopee River. The remains of a very large swimming pool stand between the river and the buildings discussed later in this post. Martha Claxton Hill writes: The swimming pool was called “Beeline Springs”. Earnest Claxton owned all of the land around the pool. It was a special place in its day. In a time when private pools were a domain of the wealthy, public pools such as this were among the most popular recreation spots of their day.

Kite GA Little Ohoopee River Public Swimming Pool Ruins Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2016

Ernest Claxton’s daughter, Lynn Paul Neal penned the following remembrance in Emanuel County’s 2013 Bicentennial Celebration Book. Thanks to Mary Ann Smith for bringing it to my attention and procuring permission from Mrs. Neal to share it here.

Remember Bee Line Springs?
Earnest Claxton built the Bee Line Springs Swimming Pool and Recreation Park just outside of Kite on the Ohoopee River. It had a skating and dancing pavilion that was also used for reunions and family get-togethers.
Three artesian wells supplied icy cold water for the swimming pool. One side of the pool had dressing rooms and there were cabins that were rented on the property.
Several nationally known bands of the late 1920s and 1930s played there. Ernest would find a band enroute from Miami to New York City or vice-versa and book them to stop on their way to play for a one-night dance. These occasions drew tremendous crowds.
You can still see the old swimming pool outline thru the trees on the south side of Hwy 57 near the ‘Hoopee River.

Kite GA Little Ohoopee River Public Swimming Site Johnson County Granitoid Building Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2016

Many public pools featured skating rinks, bowling alleys and/or restaurant, but this structure is too small to have been either of those. And Martha Claxton Hill notes that it was not here when the pool was open. Grady C. Riner writes: That block building was built years after the pool was grown over and broken. It was built as a juke joint ( in todays words a bar) It had the juke box for music and dancing. After it was closed as a juke joint it was used as a house. My aunt lived in it for years with her two young boys.

Kite GA Little Ohoopee River Public Swimming Site Granitoid Building Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2016

A shed-sized structure is located just to the left of the larger building.

Kite GA Little Ohoopee River Public Swimming Site Outbuilding Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2016

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11 Comments

Filed under --JOHNSON COUNTY GA--, Kite GA

11 responses to “Beeline Springs, Kite

  1. Sherry

    My grandmother lived in the house in the 3rd pic in the 60’s .. we carried a LOT of water from the springs & the pool was empty at the time she lived there – it was just a hang out spot for young people 🙂

  2. Martha Claxton Hill

    The swimming pool was called “Beeline Springs” Ernest Claxton owned
    all of the land around the pool. It was a special place in it’s day.

  3. Janet

    I liked “juke joint” too! Knew exactly what you were talking about. Interesting about the pool, though. Thanks!

  4. Carol

    Public swimming facilities usually always had a Concession stand and a place for changing. These buildings could have served those purposes.

  5. Nfutral

    Love this mystery! Hope someone knows and will comment here….

  6. Lynn Winters

    “Juke joint” — Thanks for my first smile of the day!

    • Grady C. Riner

      That block building was built years after the pool was grown over and broken. It was built as a juke joint ( in todays words a bar) It had the juke box for music and dancing. After it was closed as a juke joint it was used as a house. My aunt lived in it for years with her two young boys.

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