Man's restored 'See Rock City' sign draws citation - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Forsyth County man's restored 'See Rock City' sign draws citation

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A man's historical find has led to fight with county officials.

A handy man discovered a "See Rock City" sign under the grime of decades while he was fixing Ben Morris' barn roof about two years ago.

"At that point in time, it was just like we were Egyptologists that had discovered the tomb of King Tut," Morris said.

Morris painstakingly restored the sign on top of his 1920s-era barn located on the property where he operates an internet car dealership in Cumming.

Morris said that the sign has been restored to specifications from Rock City, a Tennessee tourist attraction at the Georgia border. He believes saving it was important since the signs originally placed on barns all over the southeast are pretty much gone.

However, Forsyth County's code enforcement cited him for possession of an illegal roof sign.

"I am guilty in the fact that I have restored a piece of Americana that says ‘See Rock City,'" Morris said.

Forsyth County spokesperson Jodi Gardner said in a statement, "The new sign is in violation of Forsyth County's sign ordinance and the county does not have the ability to ignore the sign ordinance based on a sign's contents."

Morris faces a fine of $1,000 and or two months in jail for trying to preserve what he sees as a piece of history.

"History and Americana is a part of our lives that's rapidly disappearing and once it's gone, it's gone forever," Morris said.

History is in Ben Morris's family stretches back to two ancestors that he says signed the Declaration of Independence. So armed with his fierce sense of history, Morris says he'll fight charge over the sign.

"Our history is something we cannot take lightly," Morris said. "If they do put me in jail please come visit me."

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