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Historical Cities-Atlanta, Georgia
Historical Cities-Atlanta, Georgia
This guide, along with the various others produced by Lyn Wilkerson and Caddo Publications USA, are based on the American Guide Series. Until the mid-1950’s, the U.S. Highway System provided the means for various modes of transport to explore this diverse land. To encourage such explorations, the Works Projects Administration under President Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Federal Writers Project created the American Guide Series. This series of books were commissioned by the Federal Government to capture the culture and history of the United States and provide the direction necessary for travelers to explore it. Each state created a commission of writers who canvassed their respective territories for content to submit. The preliminary works were then sent to Washington D.C. for final assembly in to a standard format. The result was a travel guide for each state. The series spread to include guides for important cities as well. After the State Guides were complete, the concept of a national guide was developed. However, it would not be until 1949, with the backing of Hastings House Publishing, that a true national guide would be created. Through several rounds of condensing, the final product maintained much of the most essential points of interest and the most colorful material.
To quote from the California edition of the American Guide Series, “romance has been kept in its place. . .” The intent of this guide is to provide information about the historic sites, towns, and landmarks along the chosen routes, and to provide background information and stories for what lies in-between. It is not our desire to dramatize the history or expand on it in any way. We believe that the character and culture of this state, and our country as a whole, can speak for itself. The guide has been created, not for just travelers new to the city, but for current residents who may not realize what lies just around the corner in their own neighborhood. The goal of Caddo Publications USA is to encourage the exploration of the rich history that many of us drive by on a regular basis without any sense it existed, and to entertain and educate so that history will not be lost in the future.
The first mention of this region is found in American Revolutionary War records dated August 1st, 1782, which state that a secret emissary had been delegated to report on rumors of friction between the Cherokee and Creek Indians at The Standing Peachtree. Named, according to legend, for a fruit-bearing tree that grew on a nearby Indian mound, The Standing Peachtree was a Creek settlement on the southern bank of the Chattahoochee River, approximately seven miles from the present site of Atlanta. The Creek are said to have acquired the region south of the river from the Cherokee in a series of decisive ball games, with the land rights at stake.
Because of the disturbances between the Creek and Cherokee, Lieutenant George R. Gilmer, later Governor of Georgia, was commissioned in 1813 to erect a fort at The Standing Peachtree. He and twenty-one recruits constituted the first white settlement in the Atlanta area. After his departure, The Standing Peachtree grew into an important trading post and gateway to northern Cherokee lands.
The founding of Atlanta was due to the enterprise of pioneer railroad men. In 1836, representatives of the existing railroads in Georgia devised a plan whereby the state should build a railroad through the mountains of north Georgia to connect the proposed termini of their lines at the Chattahoochee River with the Tennessee River. The charter of the Monroe Railroad was amended on December 10th, 1836, to provide for the extension of that line from Forsyth to the Chattahoochee River, and eleven days later, the Western & Atlantic Railroad was chartered to be built at state expense. A year later, a legislative act provided for the extension of the Western & Atlantic to a point not exceeding eight miles from the southeastern bank of the Chattahoochee River. The promoters of the Georgia Railroad were permitted by the same assembly to extend their line from Madison to the terminus of the Western & Atlantic.
In 1839, “Cousin John” Thrasher built a settlement called Thrasherville at this then forested site near the peg marking the planned terminus of the Western & Atlantic Railroad. This railroad was later built by the State of Georgia to provide a link to the north for other Georgia railroads. When building northward near Griffin, the Monroe Railroad accepted John Thrasher`s bid to build an embankment to enable a future junction of the Monroe Railroad with the Western & Atlantic Railroad. The Monroe Embankment, a $25,000 project, required about two years to complete. To fulfill his contract, John Thrasher brought in many laborers, built rough shelters to house them and opened Atlanta`s first store. Atlanta`s first religious service, labor trouble, social event and baby are associated with this settlement. In 1842, the terminus was changed to the place now marked by the Zero Mile Post. Thrasherville, Terminus and Marthasville were the names given to the railroad generated settlement activity which preceded Atlanta. Thrasherville and Terminus were unofficial names. Marthasville was incorporated in 1843 and was reincorporated as Atlanta in 1845 and 1847. “Cousin John`s” settlement at this location is where Atlanta began. The proposed junction of the railroads, referred to as Terminus, soon became a trading center for the surrounding country, with two stores, a sawmill, and a railroad office. In 1843, the settlement was incorporated as the town of Marthasville in honor of Martha Lumpkin, daughter of the Governor. When the Georgia Railroad was completed in 1845, Marthasville was considered an inappropriate name for so progressive a community, and the town was given the name Atlanta as a feminine version of Atlantic, taken from the Western & Atlantic Railroad. The following year, when the Macon & Western, formerly the Monroe Railroad, reached Atlanta, the town’s commercial importance increased so rapidly that on December 29th, 1847, Atlanta was reincorporated as a city. The corporate limits of the new city were within a circle, the center of which was the Western & Atlantic zero milepost near the southwestern corner of Wall Street and Central Avenue.
In 1851, the Southern Agricultural Fair, held on the site later occupied by the Fair Street School, introduced Atlanta as a marketing center for agricultural products and livestock. During the same year, two political parties sprang up, the “Orderly” and the “Rowdy.” A riot instigated by the “Rowdies” caused Mayor Jonathan Norcross to issue a call for volunteer police, and the response of more than one hundred armed men constituted the beginning of a regular police force.
The new county of Fulton was created from DeKalb County on December 20th, 1853, and Atlanta was made its seat. In the same year, the Holland Free School, the city’s first publicly sponsored educational institution, was opened in the old Angier Academy on the southwest corner of Forsyth and Garnett Streets. In 1854, when the population was approximately 6,000, the Athenaeum Theater was opened and the first city hall was constructed. The Atlanta Medical College was founded in 1855 by the physicians of the city. During the same year, a charter was granted to the Atlanta Gas Company, and the city was lighted by gas on Christmas Day.
In the late 1850’s, growing agitation between the North and South prompted Atlanta merchants to restrict business transactions to southern firms. Several political clubs were organized. Grim gatherings were held by the Gate City Guards and the Atlanta Grays, military organizations engendered by the unrest of the times. The secession of Georgia from the Union on January 19th, 1861, aroused the citizens to feverish activity, and it was logical that Atlanta should become an important military and hospitalization center and supply depot for Confederate forces. The city was put under martial law by Confederate commanders in April of 1862. During the course of the war, many large factories and warehouses were established for the manufacture and storage of supplies. It has been estimated that 80,000 wounded soldiers were quartered in the city.
On May 22nd, 1863, instructions were given Colonel Lemuel P. Grant to plan fortifications for the defense of Atlanta. By April of the next year, breastworks and batteries were in readiness to withstand the expected attack. When Confederate General John B. Hood superseded General Joseph E. Johnston in command of the Confederate army on July 17th, 1864, Union General William T. Sherman was already moving his men into position around the outer line of defense. On July 22nd, two days after General Hood’s desperate attempt to break the advancing Union line at the Battle of Peachtree Creek, the fierce encounter known as the Battle of Atlanta occurred in the southeastern part of the city, principally along what are now Moreland and DeKalb Avenues. Losses were heavy on both sides, but the battle was not decisive. A few days later, a short conflict at Ezra Church in southwest Atlanta convinced Sherman that it was too costly to take the city by assault. Several of the largest siege guns used in the war were brought down from Chattanooga, and the bombardment of Atlanta was continued throughout the remainder of July and all of August.
By the end of August, General Sherman had destroyed all means of Confederate communication with Atlanta except the Central Railroad (formerly the Macon & Western). Finding it impossible to compel the city’s surrender by bombardment, he swung a large part of his army to Jonesboro, twenty miles to the south, in an effort to cut this last line of communications. General Hood sent General W. J. Hardee with a small force to meet him, but the result was a Confederate defeat at the Battle of Jonesboro on September 1st, and the seizure of the railroad. Hood evacuated Atlanta that night by way of the McDonough wagon road, and on September 2nd, the mayor formally surrendered Atlanta to Colonel John Coburn.
Within the next few days, General Sherman ordered the removal of all citizens from the city, an unexpected command, since the terms of the surrender specified that the lives and property of all citizens were to be protected. Sherman, however, supplied teams of horses for transporting citizens to Rough and Ready, a settlement one mile south of the present Hapeville, and Hood furnished additional teams from Rough and Ready to Lovejoy Station, ten miles farther south. After the evacuation had been complete, Sherman reorganized the army and gave orders for the destruction of Atlanta by fire and explosives. On November 15th, the day after the conflagration, Sherman and his army resumed their march to the sea, having dispersed the population and razed all but 400 of Atlanta’s 4,500 houses and commercial buildings.
The war was a heavy blow to Atlanta’s progress and development. Much of the real estate, which had been assessed in 1860 at almost three million dollars, and much of the personal property had been destroyed by fire. Rehabilitation, however, followed quickly. By January of 1865, many citizens had returned to rebuild the city from salvaged materials and, after the Confederate surrender, there was an influx of people from the North and other parts of the South. On June 24th, 1865, at the first public meeting after the surrender of Atlanta, citizens discussed plans for reconstruction and resolved to co-operate with the Union politically and commercially. Although at first financial difficulties made it necessary to appeal for food supplies, immediate steps were taken to reorganize business and repair the wrecked railroad facilities. In 1866, after Atlanta became Federal headquarters for reconstruction in this section, the population was estimated at 20,228.
The first street railway began operation in 1871, the cars being drawn by mules. Atlanta’s importance as a railroad center was further increased in 1873 by the construction of the Atlanta & Charlotte Air Line Railroad and the beginning of the Georgia Western. Atlanta was now the second largest city in the state, surpassed only by Savannah.
A constitutional convention met in Atlanta on December 9th, 1867, upon the order of Major General John Pope, officer in charge of the Reconstruction military government. Atlanta offered the state free office space for ten years, and a capitol site, if that body would adopt a resolution to make the city the state seat of government. The proposal was accepted on February 27th, 1868, and upon ratification of the constitution that same year, Atlanta became the state capital. There was dissatisfaction in certain parts of the state, however, because the removal of the capital from Milledgeville was made by the Republican administration. Another constitutional convention, held in 1877, submitted the issue to the people who again confirmed the selection of Atlanta, by than a leading center of industry and commerce.
The International Cotton Exposition, held in 1881, focused the attention of the nation on the potentialities of this region as a manufacturing center and attracted investments from eastern capitalists. A second and more ambitious undertaking was the Cotton States and International Exposition, which was held in 1895 in the area that is now Piedmont Park. This exposition, featuring the progress made by African-Americans since emancipation, did much to cement the friendship between the New South and other sections of the United States. In 1906, a race riot, precipitated by newspaper accounts of several attacks on white women, reached such proportions that the state militia was called out by Governor Joseph M. Terrell. Seven African-Americans and one White man were reported killed, though the actual number of fatalities was probably higher. As a result of the riot, a racial tolerance group was formed and committees for bettering civic conditions were organized. Neighboring Georgia cities also took steps toward improving racial relations.
The Federal Reserve Bank, established in 1914, increased the city’s prestige as a financial center, and the Southeastern Fair, inaugurated during the same year, stimulated agriculture and livestock raising throughout the surrounding countryside. The greatest catastrophe to the city since the Battle of Atlanta was the fire that started on May 21st, 1917, near Decatur Street and rapidly burned the section about Boulevard from Decatur Street to Ponce de Leon Avenue. About 2,000 dwellings and business houses were destroyed and the property damage was estimated to be more than five million dollars.
From September of 1917 until November of 1918, more than 230,000 soldiers and officers were mobilized at Camp Gordon, a World War I cantonment established near Atlanta. The average monthly population of the camp was about 32,000. Candler Field, established in 1925, was later selected by leading air lines as an airport.
The city expanded rapidly from 1900 (89,000) to 1930 (902,000) before growth slowed during the Great Depression. In the 1960s, Atlanta was a center for the Civil Rights Movement and the home of Martin Luther King, Jr. Atlanta is one of the most prosperous cities in the United States and is often referred to as the unofficial "capital of the South." The city is also an especially important cultural and economic center for African-Americans. Atlanta has not had a non-black mayor since 1974, and in recent decades nearly all Fire Chiefs, Police Chiefs, and other government officials have been African-American.
Downtown Points of Interest:
(1) Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site (501 Auburn Avenue)
On January 15th, 1929, Martin Luther King, Jr. was born to the Reverend and Mrs. Martin Luther King in this home. During the next 12 years, Martin Luther King, Jr. would live here with his parents, grandparents, siblings, aunts, uncles, and their boarders. The home is located in the residential section of "Sweet Auburn", the center of black Atlanta. Two blocks west of the home is Ebenezer Baptist Church, the pastorate of Martin's grandfather and father. Here, he learned about family, segregation in the days of "Jim Crow" laws, diligence and tolerance.
Martin Luther King, Jr. entered the Christian ministry and was ordained in February of 1948 at the age of nineteen at Ebenezer Baptist Church, Atlanta, Georgia. Following his ordination, he became Assistant Pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church. Upon completion of his studies at Boston University, he accepted a position at Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama. He was the pastor of Dexter Avenue from September of 1954 to November of1959, when he resigned to move to Atlanta to direct the activities of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. From 1960 until his death in 1968, he was co-pastor with his father at Ebenezer Baptist Church. Dr. King was a pivotal figure in the Civil Rights Movement. He was elected President of the Montgomery Improvement Association, the organization that was responsible for the successful Montgomery Bus Boycott from 1955 to 1956 (381 days). He was arrested thirty times for his participation in civil rights activities. He married Coretta Scott, the younger daughter of Obadiah and Bernice McMurry Scott of Marion, Alabama, on June 18th, 1953. The couple later had four children.
(2) Five Points (Intersection of Peachtree, Decatur, and Marietta Streets and Edgewood Avenue)
Soon after the city was incorporated in 1847, this section became its natural center. Here, in 1884, the city drilled an artesian well 2,044 feet deep, and a tank and pump were installed to supply water to downtown establishments. In 1893, however, the seepage of surface water caused the condemnation and abandonment of the well.
(3) Old Lamppost (Whitehall Street and Alabama Street)
Preserved as a relic of the American Civil War, this was one of the first lampposts erected in Atlanta. At its base is a hole torn by a shell during the Battle of Atlanta, July 22nd, 1864.
(4) Grady Hospital (80 Jesse Hill Jr. Drive)
This institution was built in 1891 and 1892 as a memorial to Henry Woodfin Grady.
(5) State Capitol 1889 (Washington Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Drive)
(6) Church of the Immaculate Conception 1869 (Central Avenue and Martin Luther King Jr. Drive)
This structure was built to replace an earlier frame building damaged by bombardment during the Battle of Atlanta. It is the oldest church building in the city. The land on which this building stands was deeded to the Roman Catholics in 1848, and soon afterward a church was erected on the site.
(7) Kimball House (33 Pryor Street)
This hotel, erected in 1870, burned in 1883, and rebuilt shortly afterwards, is a landmark of eventful years in Atlanta. When hydraulic elevators were installed in 1883, people came from all parts of the state to ride them.
(8) Site of St. Philip’s Church (Washington Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Drive)
The first building located here, a modest frame structure, was erected between 1847 and 1849 at the northeast corner of this intersection. In 1864, General Sherman’s invading Union army used it as a stable and bowling alley. During the Reconstruction era, members contributed coins, tableware, and jewelry to be fashioned into a communion service. In later years, the Federal Government reimbursed the church for war damages, and a $5,000 fund was raised by a northern communicant, General George Meade, who commanded the Union forces at Gettysburg and had been military commander of the Atlanta district during Reconstruction. A second church was built in 1882 on a lot adjoining the old frame church. In 1918, the wooden structure was given to African-American members of St. Philip’s Parish, and was moved to Irwin and Fort Streets. When the brick church was torn down in 1935, the old pews, chancel rail, stained glass windows, and silver communion service were removed to the Cathedral of St. Philip at 2744 Peachtree Road.
(9) Oakland Cemetery (Memorial Drive S.E. and S. Boulevard)
The cemetery, originally a six-acre tract deeded to the city in 1850, was later extended to cover eighty-five acres.
(10) Grant Park (S. Boulevard and Atlanta Avenue)
This park was named for Colonel Lemuel P. Grant, who in 1882 donated one hundred acres of wooded land as a site for a municipal park. Near the Atlanta Avenue and Boulevard entrance is the site of Fort Walker. This commanding position was held by a Confederate battery during the Siege and Battle of Atlanta in 1864. The hill was named in memory of William H. T. Walker, a Confederate general who was killed in the Battle of Atlanta.
(11) Cyclorama Building (Grant Park)
This building houses the colossal Cyclorama of the Battle of Atlanta. The time of the scene depicted is the crucial moment at 4:30 P.M., when General Cheatham’s troops made a counterattack in an effort to restore their line. The Cyclorama was painted in 1886 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, by a staff of German artists, who executed similar cycloramas of the battles of Gettysburg and Missionary Ridge (Chattanooga), both of which were accidentally destroyed. In the early 1890’s, the Battle of Atlanta was brought to this city and lodged in an Edgewood Avenue building, where it remained until 1898, when it was purchased by G.V. Gress, an Atlanta lumber merchant, and presented to the city.
(12) Georgia Railroad Depot (124 Kimble Way at Underground Atlanta)
This is one of the oldest buildings in downtown Atlanta. It was completed on April 22nd, 1869, and served as the main freight depot for the Georgia Railroad. The end of the building once held offices and was three stories high with a balcony on the second floor and a cupola on the hipped roof. Much of the building burned in January of 1935 and it was subsequently rebuilt in its present form. The Georgia Building Authority bought the building in 1981 and renovated it for public use.
The Georgia Railroad, chartered in 1833, was completed in September of1845 at a cost of $3,369.856.42 from Augusta to a small village first named `Terminus` then `Marthasville`. The Georgia Railroad connected with the Western & Atlantic Railroad that linked Marthasville and Chattanooga. The little village became an important rail center and J. Edgar Thompson, Chief engineer of the Georgia Railroad, shortly thereafter suggested renaming Marthasville `Atlanta.`
(12) Zero Mile Post (124 Kimble Way at Underground Atlanta)
This Zero Mile Post marks the Southeastern Terminus of the Western & Atlantic Railroad, about which a settlement grew and eventually became Atlanta. This railroad to Chattanooga, Tennessee, was built and still is owned by the State of Georgia. It was authorized by the State Legislature December 21st, 1836. The route was surveyed by Colonel Stephen Harriman Long, Chief Engineer, from May 12th, 1837 to November 3rd, 1840. Construction began in March of1838.
The original terminus was between the present Forsyth and Magnolia Streets. It was moved here in 1842. The settlement which sprang up was called Terminus. It was incorporated as the town of Marthasville on December 23rd, 1843. The name was changed to Atlanta on December 29th, 1847. It was incorporated as the City of Atlanta with corporate limits extending one mile in every direction from the State Depot which was between here and what is now Pryor Street. The railroad placed mile posts beginning here in 1850. A new City Charter approved on February 28th, 1874, redefined the corporate limits as a circle one mile and a half in every direction from this mile post.
(13) Coca-Cola Company (318 North Avenue)
Coca-Cola was first made in Atlanta in 1886 by J.S. Pemberton, a wholesale druggist and manufacturing chemist, who had been experimenting to perfect a new beverage. In 1887, Pemberton disposed of two-thirds interest in his commodity for $283.29, and in the following year sold the remaining third to Asa G. Candler’s drug firm. Candler (1851-1929) gradually acquired ownership of Coca-Cola, simplified its formula, and in 1892 organized the Coca-Cola Company.
(14) Site of Winecoff Hotel (176 Peachtree Street)
This is the site of the worst hotel fire in U.S. history. In the predawn hours of December 7th, 1946, the Winecoff Hotel fire killed 119 people. The 15-story building still stands adjacent to this marker. At the time, this building had neither fire escapes, fire doors, nor sprinklers. For two and a half hours, Atlanta fire fighters and others from nearby towns battled valiantly in the cold to save the majority of the 280 guests. But their ladders reached only to the eighth floor, and their nets were not strong enough to withstand jumps of more than 70 feet. Therefore, numerous guests died on the sidewalks and in the alley behind the building. Thirty of the 119 victims were among Georgia`s most promising high school students, who had come to Atlanta to attend the YMCA`s Youth Assembly at the Capitol. The Winecoff fire became the watershed event in fire safety. Within days, cities across America began enacting more stringent safety ordinances. The fact that the Winecoff fire remains the worst hotel fire in U. S. history is testimony to its impact on modern fire safety codes.
Midtown Points of Interest:
(15) Baltimore Block (Baltimore Place)
Baltimore Block was built in 1885 by Jacob J. Rosenthal. Named for the developer`s hometown, the rowhouses were Atlanta`s first apartment-type development and the first to be based on a long-term land lease. Each of the graciously appointed fourteen original units featured central heating and gas fixtures, and in accepted Baltimore custom, the land was leased to homeowners for 99 years. For a quarter of a century, the elegant rowhouses were home to socially prominent families and professionals, including the builder himself, who had settled in Atlanta. Around 1907, the block began to fall out of vogue, and during the 1920`s, four of the buildings were torn down. The remaining units were left derelict, a home to vagrants.
Then, in 1932 came a renaissance, when artistically-minded Atlantans began to buy and restore the rowhouses, converting many to smaller apartments. Since that time, Baltimore Block has been home to artists, writers, journalists, actors, and even a French countess. Unfortunately, two more buildings were destroyed in 1954, and renovators mistakenly removed vital parts of their foundation. During the 1960`s, the block became a mecca for the bohemian set, when a coffeehouse, later a bar, operated out of two of the rowhouses. Later, offices, galleries and small shops began to mix in with the residential units. In 1989, the rowhouses, all under a single ownership for the first time, were renovated for use as office space, and a large L-shaped, 5-story addition was completed.
(16) Georgia University of Technology
In 1882, the general assembly adopted a resolution to consider the establishment of a state technical school, and in 1885 a law was passed appropriating funds for the institution. The school was established in Atlanta because the city, in competition with four other Georgia towns, made a better offer of money and land. Installation services were held at DeGive’s Opera House early in October of 1888.
(17) Georgian Terrace Hotel (Peachtree Street and Ponce De Leon Avenue)
Built by Atlanta native, Joseph Gatins and designed by New York Architect, W. L. Stoddard, the Terrace opened October 2nd, 1911. Over the years most of Atlanta`s famous visitors have chosen the Georgian Terrace Hotel as their temporary home on Peachtree Street. The Terrace served as headquarters for the Metropolitan Opera when it visited Atlanta each Spring in the early 1900`s. The great opera singer, Enrico Caruso, stayed here in 1913 and sent a gracious thank you from London complimenting the excellent food and accommodations. Clark Gable, Vivian Leigh and most of the Gone With The Wind cast stayed here when the film premiered in Atlanta in December of1939.
The Terrace served as host to Presidents Warren Harding and Calvin Coolidge. Arthur Murray once operated one of his early dancing schools here while he was attending Georgia Tech. Over the years “The Grand Old Lady of Peachtree” became known as one of the great hotels of the Southeast because of its elaborate Ballroom, the Terrace Outdoor Cafe, Marble lobby and elegant furnishing.
(18) James J. Andrews (Juniper Street and Third Street)
James J. Andrews, leader of the Andrews Raiders, was executed a few feet southeast on June 7th, 1862. Andrews a native of Hancock County, now West Virginia, was a civilian spy for the Union Army who led 20 Union soldiers and another civilian to Big Shanty (Kennesaw), Georgia, stole the locomotive “General,” April 12th, 1862, and began the Great Locomotive Chase on the Western & Atlantic Railroad leading to Chattanooga. The chase ended north of Ringgold with little damage to the railroad. Andrews and seven others were executed. First awards of the Congressional Medal of Honor were made to the survivors.
(19) Piedmont Park (Piedmont Avenue and 10th Street)
In 1887, this tract, then the property of the Gentlemen’s Driving Club, was used for the Piedmont Exposition which was planned in honor of President Grover Cleveland’s visit to Atlanta. Two years later, the land was purchased by the Exposition Company, and the grounds were further improved in 1895 for the Cotton States and International Exposition. Atlanta purchased the land for a municipal park in 1904. (20) Cotton States Exposition of 1895 (14th Street at Piedmont Park)
This exposition was held for 100 days from September 18th to December 31st, 1895, in Piedmont Park. This event was held at a time when the region’s population was only 75,000 and economically depressed. The people of Atlanta raised two million dollars to finance a public exposition. The theme for the exposition was two-fold; to exhibit the resources of the Cotton States; and to stimulate trade with Spanish American Countries. The exposition attracted over 800,000 visitors from 37 states and foreign countries. Eleven elaborate exhibition buildings were built to house 6,000 exhibits. Principal buildings included the 65,000 sq. ft. US Government building, the Negro Building, Women’s Building, Georgia Building, Electrical Building. Other attractions included a Ferris Wheel, moving picture theater, water rides, reunion of Confederate and Union soldiers, University of Georgia vs. Auburn University football game, the Liberty Bell, Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, President Grover Cleveland and John Philip Sousa composed the “King Cotton March” for the occasion. All citizens were involved in the exposition and the success of the Exposition proved to lift the community to a high plane of prosperity and public spirit.
(21) Atlanta’s Woman’s Club (1150 Peachtree Street NE)
The Atlanta Woman`s Club, organized on November 1st, 1895, was inspired by a council meeting in Atlanta of the General Federation of Women`s Clubs during the Cotton States and International Exposition. Mrs. Rebecca Douglas Lowe was the founder and first president of this Club whose object is “threefold-social, literary, and humanitarian.” On October 27th, 1896, the Atlanta Woman`s Club was hostess to organized women`s clubs in Georgia to form the State Federation. Meetings have been held at the home of the founder, the Opera House, the Club`s first home at 17 Baker Street, and the present clubhouse, purchased in 1919 and extensively enlarged since then.
(22) Habersham Memorial Hall (270 15th Street NE)
Joseph Habersham Chapter, National Society Daughters of American Revolution was organized February 12th, 1900 at the Executive Mansion. Mrs. William Lawson Peel, first Regent and Mrs. Allen D. Candler, wife of the governor, were among the five founders. The cornerstone was laid January 14th, 1922, and the building was completed in 1923. The hall was designed by Architect Henry Hornbostel, designer of Carnegie Institute of Technology, Emory University and `Callanwolde` of Atlanta. Colonel Joseph Habersham served in the Revolutionary Army, Continental Congress, and Georgia`s Constitutional Ratification Convention. He was United States Postmaster General from 1795-1810.
Atlanta East Points of Interest:
(23) Augustus Hurt Plantation (Carter Presidential Center, 441 Freedom Parkway)
Two hundred yards northeast stood the plantation residence of Augustus F. Hurt (1830-1921). The residence was built in1858 and razed by Union forces in1864. It has been erroneously cited in Official Records as the Howard house.
(24) The Troup Hurt House (DeGress Avenue, north of DeKalb Avenue)
The plantation house of George M.T. Hurt was begun in the summer of 1862, but was never completed and never occupied as a residence. It stood on the site of the stone church and faced the Decatur Rd.
(25) Alpha Delta Pi Sorority (1386 Ponce De Leon Avenue)
Alpha Delta Pi Sorority was founded May 15th, 1851, at Wesleyan College in Macon, Georgia as the first secret society in the world for college women, and thus became the mother of the social sorority system. Wesleyan College was the first educational institution to grant an academic degree to a woman. Alpha Delta Pi Sorority now maintains chapters in leading colleges and universities throughout the United States and Canada. Memorial Headquarters building was dedicated in memory of the Sorority’s founding in Georgia by the Grand Council on March 26th, 1955.
(26) Georgia Railway and Power Company Trolley Waiting Station (Ponce De Leon Avenue at East Lake Drive)
The Georgia Railway & Power Company, predecessor of Georgia Power, built this trolley waiting station in 1923. The waiting station served Druid Hills residential development when the streetcar line on Ponce de Leon Avenue was extended from downtown to East Lake Drive. The functional design was a common one shared by the electric company’s waiting stations along city streetcar routes. This structure is the power company’s only original waiting station remaining in Atlanta. Buses replaced streetcars that once stopped here for passengers, and the tracks were removed.
(27) Battle of Atlanta Began Here (Memorial Drive at Clay Street)
Sweeny`s 2nd Division, Dodge`s 16th Army Corps, having been held in reserve north of the Georgia Railroad (Candler Park), was ordered to support the left of Blair`s 17th Corps in East Atlanta on July 22nd, 1864. Marching via Clay Road, Sweeny`s column halted here at noon to await further orders. Mersy`s brigade led the advance, followed by Rice`s. Thus, by mere accident, the two brigades were posted where they intercepted the surprise attack by Walker`s and Bate`s divisions, aimed at the rear of Blair`s 17th Army Corps entrenched along Flat Shoals Road, one mile west of this point, thereby precipitating the battle.
(28) Death of McPherson (McPherson Monument, McPherson Avenue and Monument Avenue)
The monument in the enclosure was erected by U.S. Army Engineers to mark the site where General James B. McPherson was killed during the Battle of Atlanta on July 22nd, 1864. McPherson rode south from the Georgia Railroad when he heard firing in Sugar Creek valley, where the rear attack by Walker`s & Bate`s Divisions fell upon Dodge`s 16th Army Corps. After pausing to observe this part of the battle, he galloped toward the left of the 17th Army Corps (Flat Shoals & Glenwood), on a road through the pines. McPherson was accompanied by an orderly and Signal Officer, William Sherfy, who reluctantly followed after vainly warning the general that Confederate troops had seized the road.
At this point he was assailed by skirmishers of Cleburne`s Division; refusing to surrender he was shot while attempting to escape.
In an area bounded by Memorial Drive, Clifton, Glenwood and Moreland was where the major part of the Battle of Atlanta was fought on July 22nd. In terms of present landmarks, the battle began at Memorial Dr. and Clifton where Hardee’s right wing was repulsed in an unexpected clash with Sweeny’s 16th Army Corps Division. This was followed by an assault of Hardee’s left wing which crushed the left of the 17th Army Corps at Flat Shoals Road and Glenwood and dislodged the right of the 16th Army Corps, forcing them north to a second line at and east of Leggett’s Hill, eight hours of battle in which two major generals, Walker and McPherson were killed.
(29) Death of General Walker (Glenwood Avenue at Wilkinson Drive)
Confederate General W.H.T. Walker, commanding a division of Hardee`s Army Corps while directing his troops toward the battlefield, reached a close proximity to this spot at noon on July 22nd, 1864, where, pausing to reconnoiter the area, he was shot from his horse by a Union picket. General Walker was succeeded by General Hugh Mercer, who deployed the division in Sugar Creek valley just west of this marker. Bate`s Division advanced on this side of the creek. The northward movement of these troops, far from being a rear attack on the Union forces, as contemplated, struck two divisions of the Union 16th Army Corp, which happened to be in their front (at Clay Street & Memorial Drive).
(30) Judge James Paden House (N. Decatur Road and Clifton Avenue)
Schofield’s 23rd Army Corps reached this vicinity via Old Shallow Ford Road the evening of July 19th, 1864. This was the northeast sector of Sherman’s approach to Atlanta. Cox’s Division camped east of Pea Vine Creek on the Paden plantation, now a part of Emory University campus. General Cox’s headquarters was at Judge Paden’s house. Hascall’s Division camped along Pea Vine Creek south of this point. McPherson’s Army of the Tennessee occupied Decatur. Thomas’s Army of the Cumberland was north of Atlanta along Peachtree Creek, its right resting on the Chattahoochee River.
Additional Sites in the Atlanta Area:
Durand’s Mill (Old Briarcliff Road and Old Briarcliff Way)
This water-powered sawmill & factory was operated in the 1860’s by Samuel A. Williams (1822-1891), later by Frederick A. Williams (1817-1883), whose name long designated the old road leading southwest and now known, in sections as, Briarcliff, and Williams Mill Roads, Fortune and Houston Streets, the latter terminating in downtown Atlanta.
Later, J.F. Wallace (1840-1902) succeeded Williams; his name was given to Wallace Station, a former stop on the Seaboard Railroad. His name is also given to the road which travels southeast to Emory University where it joins Clifton. Union 4th Corps troops crossed the South Fork of Peachtree Creek at Durand’s Mill on July 10th, 1864, during their advance upon Atlanta.
Historic Ground (Briarcliff Road, south of Old Briarcliff Road)
This modern TV station, WAGA-TV stands in land lot 57 of the 18th District of the original Henry, now DeKalb County, near the south fork of Peachtree Creek, was erected in 1966. In July of1864, the present Briarcliff Road was the route of the Union Army of General W.T. Sherman toward Atlanta. General O.O. Howard`s 4th Corps crossed the South Fork at Durand`s Mill and occupied an entrenched camp in this immediate vicinity on July 20th. On the 22nd, these troops with General Schofield`s 23rd Corps moved toward Atlanta on Briarcliff Road.
Henderson’s Mill Elementary School (Henderson Mill Road and Briarcliff Way)
Just to the north stood the ante and post bellum grist mill operated by Greenville Henderson (1792-1869) and his son Rufus (1823-1872). The flat, left and right of this road, was the mill pond area; the mill was demolished in 1911.
During the march of the Union Army of the Tennessee from Roswell to Decatur, Logan’s 15th Army Corps detoured from Shallow Ford Road at Rainey’s and moved to Browning’s Courthouse (now Tucker) to support Garrard’s foray on the Georgia Railroad. For strategic reasons, and lack of water at Browning’s, the corps withdrew here and camped night of July 18th, 1864. Its march to Decatur was resumed the next day.
William Johnson’s Mill (Briarwood Road at North Fork of Peachtree Creek)
About 0.3 of a mile upstream on the North Fork of Peachtree Creek is the site of a mill owned by William Johnson (1789-1855), a landmark of federal military operations in the summer of 1864, Schofield’s 23rd Army Corps having crossed the Chattahoochee River at Isom’s Ferry July 8th, began its march toward Decatur July 17th via Old Cross Keys and the House plantation. Cox’s Division camped at House’s from which point Hascall’s Division moved southeast to Johnston’s mill where it camped on July 18th. This route was taken to enable the 23rd Army Corps to join McPherson’s Army of the Tennessee likewise marching to Decatur.
Browning’s Court House (LaVista Road at Fellowship Road, Tucker)
At or near this crossroads stood the office of Browning`s Militia District No. 572. The office is cited in reports of Union military operations in July of1864 as Browning`s Court House. On July 18th, 1864, Logan`s 15th Army Corps, en route from Roswell to Decatur, detoured via Browning`s to support Garrard`s cavalry in its foray on the Georgia Railroad at Stone Mountain. Lightburn`s brigade, Smith`s Division, together with Major Hotaling`s contingent of Logan`s escort was sent from here to assist Garrard`s horsemen in destroying the railroad at & near Stone Mountain depot. Logan withdrew to Henderson`s Mill to camp that night.
The Samuel House Plantation (Peachtree Road NE and Ashford-Dunwoody Road, Chamblee)
The large brick residence built in 1857 by Samuel House (1798-1873) was a prominent landmark during military operations by Federal forces on the Atlanta front in July of 1864. Cox`s division of Schofield`s 23rd Army Corps reached this vicinity July 18th; Schofield, in person, with the Division was here joined by Sherman who established headquarters at the house. Cox`s Division camped on the plantation; Hascall`s Division, having traversed Cox`s line of march via Old Cross keys, turned southwest on Peachtree Road to Goodwin`s, then southwest to Johnston`s Mill on the North Fork of Peachtree Creek where it camped.
Solomon Goodwin’s Residence (Peachtree Road, Southwest of N. Druid Hills Road)
The house on adjacent knoll, built 1831 by Solomon Goodwin (1780-1850), is the oldest extant house in DeKalb County. It was a landmark of Union military operations in these environs during the summer of 1864. On July 18th, Hascall’s Division of the 23rd Army Corps, having marched from Old Cross Keys & the Samuel House plantation, turned southeast here to camp at Johnston’s Mill on the North Fork of Peachtree Creek. Cox’s Division of the 23rd followed Hascall the next day, both divisions having Decatur as their objective. Schofield’s 23rd Army Corps formed the center of the Union armies moving toward Atlanta on a wide front from the Chattahoochee River.
Old Cross Keys (Johnson Ferry Road and Ashford-Dunwoody Road, Chamblee)
This was an ante-bellum crossroads settlement and post office. James Reeve (1792-1852) was the first postmaster & merchant. Prior to 1864, the post office was removed to a point between Chamblee and Doraville where, the name unchanged, it was known as the Cross Keys Post Office. To distinguish the one from the other, this place was called Old Cross Keys and was thus cited in Union dispatches, maps and reports of military operations here in 1864. At this point, a brief contact was made between the marching columns of Dodge’s 16th & Schofield’s 23rd Army Corps on July 18th, both en route to Decatur from Chattahoochee River crossings.
Fort McPherson (Hardee Avenue at Haney Plaza)
This installation was named for General James Birdseye McPherson. U. S. Volunteers, the Union commander of the Army of Tennessee during the Battle of Atlanta. This area was used as a state militia drill ground as early as 1835. It housed several temporary Confederate and Union military encampments.
The U. S. Army established McPherson Barracks at a site approximately three miles north of here in 1867, but abandoned it in 1881. In 1885, the army bought 236 acres along the Georgia Central Railroad and began erecting a permanent post under the direction of engineer Captain Joshua West Jacobs. It was officially named `Fort McPherson` on May 4th, 1889, indicating a permanent Army installation. The original garrison was a quadrangle of 42 buildings built between 1889 and 1910, and is listed on the National Register. Fort McPherson has served as a general hospital command, war prison barracks, supply depot, and reception and separation center, and has been the home of major Army combat commands including Third U. S. Army and U. S. Army Forces command.
Site of Ezra Church (Mozley Park, Martin Luther King Drive)
Here stood the little frame edifice known as Ezra Church (Methodist), on a half-acre plot deeded by James & Nancy Coursey to the trustees October 31st,1853. As a landmark, its name was given to the battle fought here July 28th, 1864. Colonel Hugo Wangelin`s brigade was posted here during the battle, and lacking entrenchments, fought behind a barricade of benches removed from the church. During Union siege operations after the battle, the church was demolished. Miss Sarah Huff, who visited the site the following December, recalled seeing the carcasses of the horses still on the frozen ground.
Clark University (223 James P. Brawley Dr. SW)
Clark University was founded in 1870 by the Freedmen’s Aid Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
Wren’s Nest (1050 Ralph Abernathy Boulevard)
This is the former home of Joel Chandler Harris, creator of the Uncle Remus stories. Harris (1848-1908), was born in Eatonton, Georgia. In 1878, he agreed to write a daily column containing humorous sketches and observations. The Uncle Remus stories, songs, and sayings resulted.
West View Cemetery (1680 Ralph David Abernathy Boulevard SW)
The charter for this cemetery was granted in 1884. Several burial sections are owned by the Irish Horse Traders (see Nashville). The horse traders began the custom of burying their dead in Atlanta, where Roman Catholic priests were available, in 1881 when John McNamara died while in Atlanta and was buried at Oakland Cemetery. When no more interments could be made at Oakland Cemetery, they purchased lots in West View.
The history of the Irish Horse Traders in this country dates back more than a century, when the first family landed in America and opened a livery stable in Washington, D.C. Other families came, from the clans of Riley's, McNamara’s, Carroll's, Sherlock's, Garman's, Costello's, Darty's, and O’Hara's. When trade slackened, the clans organized themselves as traveling horse traders.
Site of Battle of Ezra Church (Martin Luther King Jr. Drive at Mozley Park)
At this place, General Hood made a third desperate attempt, on July 28th, 1864, to drive General Sherman’s forces from Atlanta.
Booker T. Washington Monument (Martin Luther King Jr. Drive and C Street)
This monument stands as a memorial to the famous African-American educator.
Morris Brown University (643 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive)
This institution opened in the fall of 1885 as Morris Brown College. In 1932, it was moved from its original location on Boulevard at Houston Street to the old campus of Atlanta University.
Added Exterior Line (Ashby Street at W. Fair Street)
From a bastion of the city fortifications, an entrenched line of earthworks was added which ran southwest to and below East Point. This line, west of and parallel to the West Point and Macon railroads (entering the city from the southwest) was designed to resist Union attempts to seize them. From July 28th to August 25th, progressive approaches to, and continuous bombardment of, the city having failed, the Union seized the railroads at Fairburn and Jonesboro, thereby forcing the evacuation of Atlanta, which was surrendered by Mayor J.M. Calhoun on September 2nd.
Burial Ground of Congregation Ahavath Achim (Memorial Drive at Oakland Cemetery)
This section of the cemetery was established in 1892 as the burial ground for congregation Ahavath Achim, which was chartered in 1887 as the city’s first synagogue composed primarily of Jews of Eastern European descent. Adjacent is the burial ground of the Kadish Lodge, a mutual aid society established in 1896 by Russian Jews which provided its members sick benefits and free burial plots.
Fort Walker (Boulevard and Atlanta Avenue)
On July 22nd, 1864, when Union troops moved west from a line (at Candler Street) to the vacated Confederate line at the Troup Hurt house (at DeGress Avenue), a signal station was established by Lieutenant Samuel Edge in a tall pine near this site commanding a view of fortified Atlanta. Lieutenant Edge reported the advance of Confederate forces astride the railroad. When the 15th Army Corps line was broken, he abandoned the station, returning to it after the line was restored. Near this site, in 1885, the battlefield was studied from a tower erected by the artists who created the Cyclorama; this established the viewing point of the big picture.
Battle of Utoy Creek (Cascade Avenue west of Woodland Terrace)
Union siege operations not only involved the encircling line of Atlanta’s defenses, but threatened the two railroads southwest of the city. Pursuant thereto, Union forces, after the Battle of Ezra Church, were shifted south, only to be confronted by a line of Confederate works west of and parallel to the railroads. Blocking this southward drift, Bate’s Division was posted on a ridge west of the main line & south of Sandtown Rd. On August 6th, 1864, Cox’s Union division, moving north of the road, vainly attempted to dislodge Bate, who withdrew only when outflanked by Hascall’s division. Cascade Avenue was the old Sandtown Road.
Battle of Ezra Church (Waterbury Drive at Battle Hill Haven)
On July 28th, 1864, four brigades of Brown`s Division deployed in this area and made the initial assaults on the Union right flank posted on the ridge just to the northeast. Their combined attacks struck Lightburn`s & Martin`s brigades. Brantly`s Mississippians carried the log barricades of the 83rd Indiana (Lightburn`s brigade) but were swept back by a counter-assault. A second attempt was made on the same ground by Walthall`s Division (Stewart`s Corps), but with like results.
Birthplace of Allison Nelson (Georgia Highway 139, east of the Chattahoochee River)
One mile north where Sandy Creek flows into the Chattahoochee River, was the house of John B. Nelson, owner of Nelson`s Ferry in the 1820`s. His son, Allison Nelson was born there in March of 1822. After service in the Mexican War, he was a representative in the Georgia General Assembly (1848 - 1849) and ninth Mayor of Atlanta (1855). He moved to Texas in 1856 where he engaged in Indian warfare and in 1860 became a member of the Texas legislature. Nelson was commissioned as a General in the Confederate Army in September of 1862. He died near Austin, Arkansas, on October 7th, 1862.
Historic Mt. Gilead Methodist Church (Fairburn Road and Redwine Road)
One of the first churches in Fulton County, Mount Gilead was founded on April 23rd, 1824 by Reverend John M. Smith (1789-1863) who is buried here. It was organized by Reverend William J. Parks. Many early settlers worshiped here and their descendants still live nearby. During the War
Between the States the church was used by Confederates and Federals as a hospital. Confederate cavalry under Ross were here. On Sunday, August 28th, 1864, a skirmish took place here as fragments of the Union Army of the Cumberland moved toward Jonesboro. The church has been rebuilt several times.
Historic Owl Rock Church (Campbellton Road at Camp Creek Parkway)
Owl Rock Church was founded in 1828 by Richmond Barge and other members of the Mutual Rights faction that withdrew from the Mount Gilead Methodist Episcopal Church. The church is named for an eight foot natural rock closely resembling an owl which is to the rear of the building. This church has taken part in four distinct phases of Methodism in Georgia: as an Associated Methodist Church,1828-1830; as a Methodist Protestant Church, 1830-1916; as a Methodist Episcopal Church, South, 1916-1939; and, since 1939, as a Methodist Church. The Annual Conference session of the Methodist Protestant Church was held here in the year 1900. During the Battle of Atlanta many skirmishes were fought in the area and the church is mentioned frequently in the Official Records. Following the War Between the States, the church sponsored an elementary public school. In 1921, the Sandtown School was created as a consolidation of the Owl Rock, Boat Rock, and Sandtown schools.
Sandtown (Fulton Industrial Boulevard at Boat Rock Road)
Sand Town (Oktahatalofa) and Buzzard Roost (Sulecauga) were two frontier Creek Indian communities here on the Chattahoochee River. The old Sand Town Trail extended westward to the Coosa River in Alabama and eastward into what is now DeKalb County. The land which is contained in this 14th Land Lot District was ceded by the Creek Indians to Georgia in 1821 and was part of originally Fayette (1821-1828), then Campbell (1828-1931), and now Fulton County. On September 2nd, 1828, a U.S. Post Office was established at this focal point on the old stage route. Joseph H. Coryell was the first settler who on May 1st, 1834, purchased the land which was to become Sandtown Plantation. During the War Between the States, this area was defended by the Confederate Cavalry of Jackson`s Division. On August 15th, 1864, Kilpatrick`s Cavalry of the Union Army of the Cumberland captured Sandtown and used it as a base for subsequent raids. General Sherman ordered a bridge built across the river at this point and maintained Sandtown as a communications base in the swinging of his Union forces around this southwest quadrant of Hood`s defenses to strike at Jonesboro.
Land Lot 104 (W. Peachtree Street N.E., north of U.S. 19)
This area east (L. L. 104, 17th Dist.), long known as Collier`s Woods, was part of the ante-bellum plantation of George W. Collier (1813-1903). Clear Creek Post Office (1831-1839), probably in this land lot, was named for the stream flowing across it. The old Montgomery Ferry Road traversed it.
Margaret Mitchell (1401 Peachtree Road)
Margaret Mitchell (1900-1949) spent her girlhood and young lady hood in the home of her father, which stood here. Her family had lived in Atlanta since the city’s earliest days. She was born and lived in Atlanta all her life. After her marriage to John Robert Marsh in 1925, she wrote Gone With the Wind over a period of ten years,1926 to 1936, while residing at 979 Crescent Avenue N.E. (1925-1932) and at 4 17th Street N.E. (1932-1939). She was a reporter on the Atlanta Journal for four years (1922-26). She died on August 16th, 1949, from an accident suffered near here. Her novel, which was published June 30th, 1936, has been translated into 25 foreign languages.
Rhodes Hall-Le Reve (1516 Peachtree Street)
Atlanta philanthropist and businessman Amos Giles Rhodes built Le Reve (The Dream) on his 114-acre estate in 1904. Designed by Atlanta architect Willis F. Denny II, the house is constructed of Stone Mountain granite and is distinguished by its early use of electricity and stained glass windows depicting the rise and fall of the Confederacy. In 1929, Mr. Rhodes` heirs deeded the house to the State to be used for historical purposes. Renamed Rhodes Memorial Hall, it operated as the State Archives building until 1965. It became the headquarters of the Georgia Trust in 1983.
Battlefield of Peachtree Creek (Palisades Road near Peachtree Road)
Confederate General John B. Hood, on taking command of the Army of Tennessee, July 18, 1864, began aggressive action against the Federal approach to Atlanta from upper Chattahoochee crossings. On July 20th, Hood`s first move was to attack Union General Thomas` Army of the Cumberland before it crossed Peachtree Creek, but a delay in Confederate deployment enabled the Federals to gain positions south of the creek. Battle was joined in this area. Beginning in Clear Creek valley on the east, it moved progressively west to Howell Mill Road, the sanguinary fields bisected by Collier Road.
Hiram Embry Plantation (Channing Drive near Howell’s Mill Road)
West of this site stood the ante-bellum residence of Hiram H. Embry (1805-1877), a notable landmark during the battle of Peachtree Creek.
Howell’s Mills (Howell’s Mill Road at Peachtree Creek)
This notable ante-bellum landmark was established 1852 by Judge Clark Howell (1811-1882). Two buildings, grist and sash-sawmills, which stood on the north bank, and in the bend, of Peachtree Creek, 1000 feet west of the present bridge. The old road crossed the creek on a wooden bridge to the west of the present highway and bridge. Surviving the war, the mills burned in 1879. They were the center of a rural community with a Post Office (1876-1891). Another enterprise was Foster`s Woolen Mill, established in 1880, which stood on the south bank of the creek to the west of this marker.
Battle of Moore’s Mill (Moore’s Mill Road)
On July 19th, 1864, Morgan’s Union brigade was posted on the right of Dilworth’s brigade to support his crossing of Peachtree Creek at junction with Green Bone Creek. Morgan faced a destructive fire from Confederate forces on the high bluff south of Moore’s Mill and the creek. That night, the 10th Michigan pickets occupied the mill and destroyed the flume, thereby emptying the millpond. On July 20th, Mitchell’s brigade, west of Nancy’s Creek, having outflanked the Confederates on the bluff, forced its evacuation, which enabled Morgan’s brigade to cross the creek at the ford and join the rest of Davis’s division.
Peachtree Creek (Peachtree Battle Avenue and Howell Mill Road)
Peachtree Creek is the site of the first of the series of engagements around Atlanta during the summer of 1864. On July 19th, the battle lines of the Confederate forces under General Hood were drawn up south of Peachtree Creek in preparation for an attack on the Union troops before they could cross the creek and get into position. The charge was scheduled for noon on the 20th, but the Confederate movements were not well coordinated and it was mid-afternoon before hostilities began. The desperate fighting in the brief hours before dark resulted in failure for the Confederate forces and heavy losses on both sides.
Buckhead (Roswell Road and Paces Ferry Road, Buckhead)
Local lore has recorded that in 1838 a hunter hung a deer’s at about this location in front of Irby’s Tavern. The Henry Irby family owned 803 surrounding acres and the area was designated Irbyville on maps at that time. People started identifying the area by the buck’s head and the community then changed its name to Buckhead. It was annexed into the City of Atlanta in 1952. It now has official boundaries of twenty-eight square miles as designated by the Atlanta Regional Commission. “The Storyteller,” sculpted by Frank Fleming, is sharing this information with its circle of small animal friends. This City Park, Buckhead Triangle, is a product primarily of the Robert W. Woodruff Foundation.
Standing Peachtree Park (Ridgewood Road)
A Creek Indian village stood on both sides of the river at mouth of Peachtree Creek. Whether it was named for a `pitch tree` or a peach tree, it occurs, officially, as Standing Peach Tree in Governor John Martin`s letter of May 27th, 1782, to General Andrew Pickens of South Carolina. Martin wrote of a rumored foray on the East Georgia settlements planned at Standing Peach Tree. The ancient trail traveled from Buzzard Roost (mouth of Utoy Creek) to Standing Peach Tree and, via Moore`s Mill Road, to Buckhead, then on Hog Mountain Ridge, was the original Peach Tree Trail. Later, the Hog Mountain section of it, prolonged south to Atlanta, was designated Peachtree Road.
Casey’s Hill (Old Atlanta-Marietta Road, Crestlawn Cemetery)
This notable eminence between Peachtree and Proctor`s creeks near the Chattahoochee River was named for John A. Casey (1820-1907), who lived on this hill near the old Montgomery Church. Prior to and during the 1860`s, the road from Atlanta crossed this hill and via Montgomery`s Ferry, ran to Marietta in Cobb County.
Confederate forces crossed the river near the railroad bridge here on July 9th and 10th, 1864, and camped on the left bank until the 18th when most of them shifted toward Atlanta on the old Marietta Rd. En route, they learned that Confederate General Joseph Johnston had been relieved of the command and General Hood had been appointed his successor.
Fort Peachtree (Ridgewood Road at Ridgewood Circle)
This was one of a line of forts hastily constructed during the War of 1812 to control the Creek Indians who were in alliance with the British. It overlooked the Creek trading-post town of Standing Peachtree. First Lieutenant George Rockingham Gilmer (Governor of Georgia, 1829-31, 1837-39) erected the fort in 1814. He later said he had `never seen a fort` up until that time, but as far as anyone knows, his construction was successful, since the strength of the fort was never tested. Sergeant James McCondell Montgomery, one of Gilmer`s command of twenty-two, wrote General Andrew Jackson (March 20th, 1814) that the site, “on a commanding eminence,” provided a “romantic” view of the river, both up stream and down. In July, he described the fort as being “two large hew`d logg block houses, six dwelling houses, one fram`d storehouse, one Bridge...and five boats” which cost “the Government not less than five thousand dollars.” Montgomery later returned to live here. He became postmaster of Standing Peachtree and established Montgomery`s Ferry near the fort site. After the War of 1812, Fort Peachtree was apparently abandoned. No trace of the fort remains atop the hill.
Isom’s Ferry (Ferry Landing at Chattahoochee River, Sandy Springs)
This ferry was located on the Chattahoochee River, at the mouth of Heards Creek. It was operated in the 1860`s by James Isom. Federal Army records cite it variously as Isham`s Ford or Ferry, Phillip`s Ferry, and Cavalry Ford. The first of the Union troops to pass the river arrived on July 8th. John Heard (1835-1931) took over Isom`s Ferry in 1868 & operated it until 1890.
Oglethorpe University (4484 Peachtree Road NE)
This university is an outgrowth of Oglethorpe College, which was founded near Milledgeville in 1835. The college was destroyed during the American Civil War when its buildings were burned and its endowment lost through the failure of Confederate bonds. The institution was opened in Atlanta during the fall of 1870, but after three years it was forced to close because of financial difficulties. The movement for the present institution was begun in 1912 by Thornwell Jacobs, and four years later the university reopened with Jacobs as president.
A vault, called the Crypt of Civilization, has been built under the administration building to preserve material illustrative of present civilization. This vault, containing canned food, cameras, phonographs with records, and encyclopedias transferred to microfilms, is not to be opened until the year 8113. In the November 1936 issue of Scientific American magazine, Dr. Thornwell Jacobs described his plan to create a permanent record - a time capsule - of what life was like on Earth for any future inhabitants. Because the first known date in recorded history, 4241 B.C., was 6177 years previous, Jacobs suggested that the Crypt be sealed until 6177 years have passed - thus setting the date for the Crypt's reopening in the year 8113. The Crypt was officially sealed in 1940.
Dexter Niles’ House (1042 Marietta Street NW)
This is the site of the old plantation home of Dexter Niles where General Joseph E. Johnston, commanding the Army of Tennessee, had headquarters on July 10th to 18th, 1864. At trackside was the telegraph office in charge of Major Charles W. Hubner (later an Atlanta citizen). On July 17th, a Richmond telegram arrived notifying General Johnston of his relief from command of the army, naming General John B. Hood as his successor. Major Hubner decoded the tape, crossed the road, entered the house and handed the dispatch to General Johnston who, with maps spread out, was instructing Colonel Presstman about Atlanta defenses.
GPS COORDINATES FOR LISTED HISTORIC SITES:
Added Exterior Line (Ashby Street at W. Fair Street), 33.74908, -84.4175
Alpha Delta Pi Sorority (1386 Ponce De Leon Avenue), 33.77517, -84.3419
Atlanta’s Woman’s Club (1150 Peachtree Street), 33.7865, -84.3782
Augustus Hurt Plantation (Carter Presidential Center), 33.76676, -84.3545
Baltimore Block (Baltimore Place), 33.7679, -84.3881
Battle of Atlanta Began Here (Memorial Drive at Clay Street), 33.7474, -84.3304
Battle of Ezra Church (Waterbury Drive at Battle Hill Haven), 33.75502, -84.446
Battle of Moore’s Mill (Moore’s Mill Road), 33.82633, -84.4425
Battle of Utoy Creek (Cascade Avenue west of Woodland Terrace), 33.73378, -84.5472
Battlefield of Peachtree Creek (Palisades Road near Peachtree Road), 33.80487, -84.3934
Birthplace of Allison Nelson (Georgia Highway 139, east of the Chattahoochee River), 33.78476, -84.522
Booker T. Washington Monument (Martin Luther King Jr. Drive and C Street), 33.75333, -84.4215
Browning’s Court House (LaVista Road at Fellowship Road, Tucker), 33.85463, -84.2174
Buckhead (Roswell Road and Paces Ferry Road, Buckhead), 33.83939, -84.3799
Burial Ground of Congregation Ahavath Achim (Memorial Drive at Oakland Cemetery), 33.74858, -84.3731
Casey’s Hill (Old Atlanta-Marietta Road, Crestlawn Cemetery), 33.80785, -84.4463
Church of the Immaculate Conception 1869 (Central Avenue and Martin L. King Jr. Parkway), 33.75071, -84.3898
Clark University , 33.74936, -84.4128
Coca-Cola Company (318 North Avenue), 33.76298, -84.3937
Cotton States Exposition of 1895 (14th Street at Piedmont Park), 33.78624, -84.3781
Cyclorama Building (Grant Park), 33.73273, -84.372
Death of General Walker (Glenwood Avenue at Wilkinson Drive), 33.73981, -84.3268
Death of McPherson (McPherson Monument, McPherson Avenue and Monument Avenue), 33.74421, -84.3408
Dexter Niles’ House (1030 Marietta Street), 33.7853, -84.4225
Durand’s Mill (Old Briarcliff Road and Old Briarcliff Way), 33.80304, -84.3356
Five Points (Intersection of Peachtree, Decatur, and Marietta Streets and Edgewood Avenue), 33.75438, -84.3898
Fort McPherson (Hardee Avenue at Haney Plaza), 33.70751, -84.4332
Fort Peachtree (Ridgewood Road at Ridgewood Circle), 33.83141, -84.449
Fort Walker (Boulevard and Atlanta Avenue), 33.73009, -84.3683
Georgia Railroad Depot (Underground Atlanta), 33.75309, -84.3911
Georgia Railway and Power Company Trolley Waiting Station (Ponce De Leon Avenue at East Lake Drive), 33.77142, -84.3209
Georgia University of Technology , 33.77287, -84.3937
Georgian Terrace Hotel (Peachtree Street and Ponce De Leon Avenue), 33.77236, -84.3848
Grady Hospital (80 Jesse Hill Jr. Drive), 33.75252, -84.3818
Grant Park (S. Boulevard and Atlanta Avenue), 33.7358, -84.371
Habersham Memorial Hall (270 15th Street), 33.78854, -84.3779
Henderson’s Mill Elementary School , 33.85551, -84.2587
Hiram Embry Plantation (Channing Drive near Howell’s Mill Road), 33.80785, -84.4125
Historic Ground (Briarcliff Road, south of Old Briarcliff Road), 33.79712, -84.3357
Historic Mt. Gilead Methodist Church (Fairburn Road and Redwine Road), 33.66606, -84.5161
Historic Owl Rock Church (Campbellton Road at Camp Creek Parkway), 33.69932, -84.5769
Howell’s Mills (Howell’s Mill Road at Peachtree Creek), 33.82444, -84.4163
Isom’s Ferry (Ferry Landing at Chattahoochee River, Sandy Springs), 33.92407, -84.4286
James J. Andrews (Juniper Street and Third Street), 33.7736, -84.3831
Judge James Paden House (N. Decatur Road and Clifton Avenue), 33.78888, -84.321
Kimball House (33 Pryor Street), 33.75386, -84.389
Land Lot 104 (W. Peachtree Street N.E., north of U.S. 19), 33.79815, -84.3878
Margaret Mitchell (1401 Peachtree Road), 33.79304, -84.3873
Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site (501 Auburn Avenue), 33.75506, -84.3707
Morris Brown University (643 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive), 33.75511, -84.4085
Oakland Cemetery (Memorial Dr. SE and S. Boulevard), 33.74858, -84.3731
Oglethorpe University (4484 Peachtree Road), 33.873, -84.3313
Old Cross Keys (Johnson Ferry Road and Ashford-Dunwoody Road, Chamblee), 33.89218, -84.3261
Old Lamppost (Whitehall Street and Alabama Street), 33.75243, -84.3901
Peachtree Creek, 33.823, -84.4202
Piedmont Park (Piedmont Avenue and 10th Street), 33.78176, -84.3805
Rhodes Hall-Le Reve (1516 Peachtree Street), 33.79575, -84.3882
Sandtown (Fulton Industrial Boulevard at Boat Rock Road), 33.72502, -84.5829
Site of Battle of Ezra Church (Martin Luther King Jr. Drive at Mozley Park), 33.75358, -84.4388
Site of St. Philip’s Church (Washington Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Drive), 33.75004, -84.3883
Site of Winecoff Hotel (176 Peachtree Street), 33.75813, -84.3878
Solomon Goodwin’s Residence (Peachtree Road, Southwest of N. Druid Hills Road), 33.85789, -84.3417
Standing Peachtree Park (Ridgewood Road), 33.83892, -84.3652
State Capitol 1889 (Washington Street and Hunter Street), 33.74872, -84.3877
The Samuel House Plantation (Peachtree Road and Ashford-Dunwoody Road, Chamblee), 33.87542, -84.3279
The Troup Hurt House (DeGress Avenue, north of DeKalb Avenue), 33.75861, -84.3517
West View Cemetery (Gordon Road and Mozley Drive), 33.74848, -84.4462
William Johnson’s Mill (Briarwood Road at North Fork of Peachtree Creek), 33.84952, -84.2833
Wren’s Nest (1050 Ralph Abernathy Boulevard), 33.73751, -84.4198
Zero Mile Post (124 Kimble Way at Underground Atlanta), 33.75309, -84.3911