Clayton is a city in Rabun County, Georgia, United States. The population was 2,019 at the 2000 census. The city is the county seat of Rabun County and is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains.
The area that would eventually become Clayton was called the Dividings because it sat at the intersection of three important Cherokee trails. Explorer and naturalist William Bartram came through the Dividings in May, 1775 while exploring what would later become Rabun County. Much later, after Clayton had grown to include the Dividings, two of the old Cherokee trails became the main roads for Clayton and the county: U.S. 441 and U.S. 76.
Clayton was incorporated December 13, 1823 as Claytonville but the name was later shortened to Clayton. The city was named after a prominent jurist and congressman, Judge Augustin S. Clayton who served in both the Georgia House of Representatives and Georgia Senate before becoming as a representative of Georgia in the United States House of Representatives from 1831–1835. In 1824, 67 acres (270,000 m2) were purchased from Solomon Beck for $150 and a site for a courthouse and the surrounding streets was laid out.