This year marks our 150th anniversary as a practicing law firm in Macon. Not many companies, or law firms, can boast a long and rich legacy as we’ve enjoyed. So, you’ll forgive us if we take some time throughout this year to reflect on and remember our past.
It’s only fitting that we start our remembrances at the beginning with a look back on our firm’s founding and what lessons the founders helped instill in us that we maintain to this day.
The civil war decimated and destroyed much of Georgia. The post-war era was a tumultuous time for our state, with many cities descending into chaos. The city of Macon was no exception. City infrastructure was damaged, and the male population was reduced to only 1/5th of what it was at the start of the war.
Thankfully, a handful of people were in place, ready to step up and help rebuild. Isaac Hardeman and James H. Blount were two such men who made their name and reputation by helping to reconstruct Macon in the years following the war. Macon was their home prior.
After a few years of tireless work helping to rebuild downtown, the two decided in 1872 to form a law partnership in the heart of Georgia. They chose to place their new firm in Macon’s reconstructed downtown to help serve as a symbol for a new era in Macon.
The founding duo focused their new firm on maintaining the highest standards of ethics and excellence. We view this focus on ethical standards as the foundation of the success we enjoy today and a core value that all firm members must continuously strive towards.
Having seen firsthand the adaptation necessary to make it through the post-war era, Isaac Hardeman and James H. Blount embraced change and evolution, making it another foundational pillar of our firm. They understood that the firm must stay on the cutting edge to keep ahead of the ever-changing legal landscape. Though we take great pride in our rich history, we have maintained that original commitment to adaptation to changes in policy and technology. This focus on the future has helped keep our firm at the cutting-edge of our field for generations.
Our founders also understood that a new generation of lawyers would be required to keep building on the momentum they had started. Both were noted by their peers for being inspirations and examples to new lawyers. This is why many of our partners use their time and energy to help further legal education in our state.
And while our founders were committed to rebuilding Macon, they also extended their reach to serve the state and nation. James H. Blount served in Congress and was later appointed by President Grover Cleveland as “Paramount Commissioner” to Hawaii. The firm continues this legacy today. Our attorneys have represented clients in Macon, in litigation matters in federal courts in every federal district in Georgia, and in numerous state and local courts throughout the area. Over the years, we have worked with multiple national clients on class actions and other litigation and non-litigation matters.
Throughout the firm’s history, we have grown and flourished to be one of the state’s largest law firms outside Atlanta. The growth and prosperity we enjoy today are thanks in no small part to the foundations put in place by our founding fathers. To become the firm we are today, the firm has endured and evolved through succeeding generations, war and peace, and depression and prosperity.
Our reputation for providing broad legal expertise with a high level of professional integrity is because of the examples set by our founding fathers. Our attorneys and staff strive daily to preserve the firm’s core values they established.
As we celebrate our 150 years and look to our future, we are thankful for the work of Isaac Hardeman and James H. Blount. Jones Cork has only been able to endure for this long because of our deep roots, high standards, and indisputable commitment to providing the very best legal counsel to clients. We thank our founders for laying the foundations we continue to build on today.