The small crossroads community of Friendship is located at the intersection of Cochran Mill Road and Rivertown Road. The three houses and one commercial building in the village date from the mid-eighteenth century to about 1919.
The community takes its name from the nearby Friendship Baptist Church. The barn at the intersection is a roadside landmark.
The oldest house in Friendship is the Cook-Goodes House (FU-115) (c.1860-1869) located at 6250 Cochran Mill Road. Humorously called as ‘Cackle Corner Farms’ because chickens were raised on the
property, the Cook-Goodes House was originally built by the Cook family and purchased by the Goodes
in 1952. The house is a frame built, central hallway house type with no discernable academic style and
one and a half stories in height. The roof is side gabled with a metal seam covering. Two chimneys, one,
stuccoed masonry, the other brick, are located at each gable end. Asbestos siding was added to the house
in 1950 and a large, rear gable and shed addition was built in 1952. In addition to the main house, there
are seven outbuildings on the property, including two gable roofed storage sheds, a corrugated metal
barn/shed, a chicken coop with two chicken houses, a machinery shed and a wood storage shed.
Other residences in the community include the Cook Family Home (FU-112) (c.1920-1929), a front
gable, frame bungalow house located at 6285 Cochran Mill Road. Next-door is a gabled ell cottage house
(FU-113) (c.1910-1919) with aluminum siding at 6275 Cochran Mill Road. Further north at 5950
Cochran Mill Road, near the intersection of Porter Terry Road, is a small, central hallway house type with
Greek Revival style elements (FU-117) (c.1880-1889). The clapboard sided house has a three-bay facade
and a full-width front porch with four square wood column supports. A small secondary dwelling with a
front gable, recessed porch and weatherboard siding also resides on the property, as does a storage shed.
Across Porter Terry Road is a well house and gabled chicken coop.
The single extant commercial building in the Friendship Community is the Cook Caldwell General Store
(FU-114) (c.1890-1899) located at 6265 Cochran Mill Road. Now vacant, the wood frame structure has a
stone pier foundation and is one room wide and one room deep. It has a symmetrical, three bay front
facade with two windows flanking a central doorway and a full width porch with pent/shed roof. The
building’s main roof is front gabled with asphalt shingling. The entire structure is covered with clapboard
siding and all posts, brackets and balusters on the porch are wood. The two front windows are
The Friendship Baptist Church (FU-116) (c.1940) is the only community landmark building in
Friendship. The present chapel was constructed in the mid-twentieth century, replacing a smaller, white
frame church built in 1880. The organization of the congregation dates back to 1877. The modern
Friendship Baptist Church is one story in height, has a front gable roof orientation and a symmetrical,
three bay façade. The style of the building can be characterized as having Classic Revival elements. A
full-height, triangular front gabled porch dominates the front facade with an oculus window in the
pediment and four, round support columns. Aside from the wood, front porch and a flagstone clad
chimney, the rest of the structure is covered in a regular coursed stone veneer. A one story, flat-roofed
stone addition with 6/6 double hung sash windows was built at the rear of the church in 1950. A
fellowship hall with a connecting walkway was built parallel to the main structure in 1987. The newer
building mimics the design of the original church but with a more horizontal emphasis. A historic cemetery is located at the rear of the two primary buildings and a number of members from the Cook, Hathaway, Jones, Goode, Rainwater and Garrett families are buried here.
Although not a part of the Friendship Community, the nearby old Cochran Mill site and Wilkerson Mill
are two historically significant properties. The stone wall and steel frame bridge ruins of the Cochran
Mill (FU-111) (c.1890), located in the 900 acre, county owned Cochran Mill Park at the intersection of
Cochran Mill Road and Upper Wooten Road, are all that remain of the three mills built by the Cochran
family during the mid to late nineteenth century on Little and Big Bear Creeks. Cheadle Cochran, the
patriarch of the locally prominent Cochran family, came to Campbell County during the late 1820s and
built a lumber mill on Little Bear Creek. Cochran went on to become a state senator from 1822 to 1837
and was the main proponent of establishing rural mail routes throughout Georgia. His son, Berry Winn
Cochran, Sr. built a gristmill powered by an upstream lock dam on Big Bear Creek close to Cochran Mill
Road and about a mile from the original site. He built the third mill on a five-foot damn across the ledge
from the second mill. This mill was three-stories tall and constructed of hand-hewn beams. It had a set of
interchangeable set of stones for grinding various grains. Berry Winn Cochran, Jr., a 1903 graduate of
Georgia Tech, attached a small generator plant to the mill and supplied electricity to Palmetto from 1909
until 1918 when Georgia Power established its lines in the area. Fulton County bought 725 acres of the
property in 1968 and an additional 175 in 1973. The mill burned down in 1974 and a flood in 1994
washed away part of its foundation.
Further to the east on Little Bear Creek, at 9595 Wilkerson Mill Road, is Wilkerson Mill (FU-144)
(c.1867), a relatively intact gristmill and the only standing mill in Fulton County. The earliest recording
account of the structure is from a deed, dated 1870, that conveys a half interest in the mill business and
seven acres of land from William S. Mosely to William Wilkerson. The mill and its machinery were
updated at the turn of the century by Mr. W. F. Bearden and later sold to the Denton Family in the early
1900s. The Dentons operated Wilkerson Mill for most of the twentieth century until they were forced to
sell the property following the elder Denton’s death in the 1960s. The Denton family home (FU-143)
(c.1920-1929), a multi-gabled craftsman bungalow house, is located up a small path, closer to the road at
9595 Wilkerson Mill Road.
Wilkerson Mill is three stories in height, has minimal Greek Revival architectural elements and is
constructed of heavy hewn-frame beams with unpainted, weatherboard siding. The original foundation
rests stone piers, although additional piers and a poured concrete foundation were later added in 1990. It
has a front gable roof with incomplete gable returns. The mill has an asymmetrical façade and one entry
door. All original windows are missing. Some of the machinery used to process the corn and wheat mill
is found in the building’s interior.
The property’s current owners, Elizabeth Dean and Gene Griffith, operate a nursery named Wilkerson
Mill Gardens out of the old Denton home and the mill is primarily used for storage purposes. In the early
1990s, Dean and Griffith hired a family of Amish craftsman to rehabilitate the most damaged aspects of
the structure. It was at this time, that the concrete foundation and sheet metal roof were installed in order
to stabilize the mill and protect the interior from further deterioration.
Above History is from South Fulton Scenic Byways - Historic Context By: Patrick Sullivan & Jessica Lavandier