Historic documents in Atlanta saved from the trash

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The caller on the phone did not identify himself, but Augusta historians call him "Deep Throat."

Have a van outside the courthouse at a certain hour, the caller said. Be prepared to load up several garbage bags full of documents.

In fact, the cache of historic records would eventually fill 40 to 50 boxes, and would include pre-Revolutionary War papers, some of them autographed by signers of the Declaration of Independence.

Because someone with connections didn't want to see those documents go into a landfill, the Augusta Genealogical Society received an anonymous tip.

If their contact had not placed a call, Button Gwinnett's signature, and others, would have been trashed, said Thomas Dirksen, Augusta historian, and past president of the society. "Those records would have disappeared, and no one would have thought twice," he said.

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