Dahlonega is a city in Lumpkin County, Georgia, United States, and is its county seat. As of the 2000 census, it had a total population of 3,638. Dahlonega is located at the north end of Georgia 400, which connects Atlanta to many affluent suburbs to the north. It is consistently named as a best place to retire by many different publications, due to its low cost of living, vibrant activities, continuing education for seniors, festivals, and beautiful setting. In 1828 Dahlonega was the site of the first major gold rush in the United States. The Dahlonega Gold Museum Historic Site sits in the middle of the town square, housed in the old Lumpkin County Courthouse built in 1836. From its steps in 1849, Dahlonega Mint assayor Dr. M. F. Stephenson tried to persuade miners to stay instead of joining the California Gold Rush, saying, "There's gold in them thar hills."