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Tift County was created in 1905 from portions of Berrien County. The county was named for Nelson Tift, who had helped found the city of Albany, served as that city's mayor, and later served as a congressman. His nephew founded the city of Tifton in 1872 when he opened a sawmill there.
The county's courthouse was constructed in 1912. TyTy was named for the trees lining the banks of a nearby creek: the Ironwood (white titi) and Buckwheat (black titi) trees.