Providence Canyon State Park

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Providence Canyon State Outdoor Recreation Area (Little Grand Canyon)
Providence Canyon from rim.jpg
Providence Canyon, from the rim
Map showing the location of Providence Canyon State Outdoor Recreation Area (Little Grand Canyon)
Map showing the location of Providence Canyon State Outdoor Recreation Area (Little Grand Canyon)
Location of Providence Canyon State Outdoor Recreation Area in Georgia
LocationStewart County, Georgia, US
Coordinates32°03′48″N 84°55′10″W / 32.063273°N 84.919511°W / 32.063273; -84.919511Coordinates: 32°03′48″N 84°55′10″W / 32.063273°N 84.919511°W / 32.063273; -84.919511
Area1,003 acres (4.06 km2)
Elevation500 ft (150 m)
OperatorGeorgia State Parks and Historic Sites

Providence Canyon State Outdoor Recreation Area is a 1,003-acre (405.90 ha) Georgia state park located in Stewart County in southwest Georgia.[2] The park contains Providence Canyon, which is sometimes called Georgia's "Little Grand Canyon". It is considered to be one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Georgia. Providence Canyon actually is not a purely natural feature—the massive gullies (the deepest being 150 feet) were caused by erosion due to poor farming practices in the 19th century.[3] It is also home to the very rare plumleaf azalea.

This old story of the origin of the canyons has been commonplace since the 1940s. Although there were probably a few early arrivals before 1825, the first heavy influx of settlers in Stewart county came after the Treaty of Indian Springs (1825) by which the Creek Indians were forced to cede all their lands east of the Chattahoochee river. Evidence of the existence of the canyons is their mention in a deed by James S Lunsford to William Tatam recorded in 1836.

The park lies on marine sediments—usually loamy or clayey, with small areas of sand. Loamy sand topsoils overlie subsoils of sandy clay loam, sandy clay, or clay in most of the uneroded section. Nankin, Cowarts, Mobila, and Orangeburg are the most prominent soil series. The canyons have much exposure of clay, over which water often seeps. Water is mobile in this well-drained area.

One of the quirkier attractions of the state park is an abandoned homestead including nearly a dozen rusty, 1950s-era cars and trucks. Due to the environmental damage that removing the vehicles would cause, park officials have decided to leave them alone.


  • 1,003 acres (406 ha)
  • 2 picnic shelters
  • 6 back country campsites
  • 3 pioneer campsites

Yearly events[edit]

  • Christmas Workshop (December)
  • Astronomy Night (September)
  • Fall Wildflower Day (October)
  • Geology Day (October)


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Krakow, Kenneth K. (1975). Georgia Place-Names: Their History and Origins (PDF). Macon, GA: Winship Press. p. 182. ISBN 0-915430-00-2.
  2. ^ "Providence Canyon State Outdoor Recreation Area Official Website". Retrieved July 6, 2011.
  3. ^ Sutter, Paul S. (2010). "What Gullies Mean: Georgia's 'Little Grand Canyon' and Southern Environmental History". Journal of Southern History. Vol. 76 no. 3. p. 579. Retrieved February 20, 2018.

Further reading[edit]