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According to the U. It is also one of the most important commercial, financial, and transportation centers of the southeastern United States. Located in the northern portion of the state, Atlanta enjoys a high mean elevation—1, feet m above sea level—which distinguishes it from most other southern and eastern cities and contributes to a more temperate climate than is found in areas farther south.

Transportation innovations and their connections to Atlanta helped establish the city as a state and regional center of commerce and finance. Issues of race and race relations, dating back to the years before the Civil War , have affected the layout of the city and its political structure, municipal services , educational institutions, and sometimes conflicting images as a segregated southern city and a "black mecca. Railroad Terminus Atlanta Terminal Station important developments in the s: Indian removal and the discovery of gold encouraged new settlement in the region, but it was the railroad that actually brought Atlanta into being and eventually connected it with the rest of the state and region.

In engineers for the Western and Atlantic Railroad a state-sponsored project staked out a point on a ridge about seven miles east of the Chattahoochee River as the southern end of a rail line they planned to build south from Chattanooga, Tennessee. Zero Milepost The town that emerged around this zero milepost was called Terminus, which literally means "end of the line. In the name of the town was changed to Marthasville, in honor of the daughter of former governor Wilson Lumpkin , who had played a key role in bringing the railroad to the area.

Two years later the city adopted a new name—Atlanta. Civil War Battle of Atlanta home to 9, people and was already the fourth largest city in the state. Enslaved African Americans and free persons of color were part of this population, although in smaller numbers than in the older, larger port cities of the South.

The activities and freedoms of both groups of African Americans, however, were strictly controlled by laws and customs. Gatherings of slaves and free blacks, for example, required special sanction by the mayor; both groups had to observe strict curfews, and free persons of color could not live within the city limits without written permission of the city council.

Antebellum Atlanta was a city led by merchants and railroad men, not planters, and as sectional differences mounted, businessmen and voters in the city tended to oppose secession , often on economic grounds. In the presidential election of , the majority of voters cast their ballots for Union candidates Stephen A. Douglas and John Bell. But when Georgia seceded in January , Atlanta joined with the Confederacy and rapidly became a strategically important city for the Southern cause.

Railroad engineer Lemuel Grant , the chief engineer of the Confederate Department of Georgia, was responsible for fortifying the city. The remaining Unionists in Atlanta, whose numbers have been estimated at about families, faced increased pressures to conform or leave town. For example, the Committee on Public Safety, organized in , and the Vigilance Committee, formed the following year, focused much of their attention and energies on ferreting out suspected spies and exposing abolitionists and Union sympathizers.

As a result many Unionists left the city, and most of those who remained either went underground or kept a very low profile. During the Civil War Atlanta became a home front , a major producer of war materials, and an important regional transportation and distribution center.

Many existing industries in the city were soon converted to wartime production, and newly established factories provided much-needed Confederate munitions and supplies.

Included among these new industries were the Atlanta Sword Manufactory and the Spiller and Burr pistol factory. The biggest ordnance producer in the city, however, was the Confederate government arsenal, which produced percussion caps for muskets and pistols, small arms ammunition, saddles, bridles, cartridge boxes, canteens, and other military items and employed more than 5, men and women.

A second large war-related industry and producer was the Quartermaster Depot, which operated a shoe factory, a tannery, and a clothing depot that employed more than 3, seamstresses. The same qualities Atlanta during the Civil War that made Atlanta a strategically important town for the Confederacy also made it a tempting target for Union armies, and in the summer of General William T. Sherman and his troops moved closer on their Atlanta campaign. From July 20 to August 25 Atlanta was subjected to a withering aerial bombardment.

In the process a number of civilians were killed, and property and buildings in the city were badly damaged. Public buildings, selected commercial enterprises, industries including the Winship Foundry and the Atlanta Gas Light Company , which were operated by Union sympathizers , military installations, and blacksmith shops were also targeted.

As a result many Atlanta homes and businesses not marked for destruction were also consumed in the fires that swept the city on November 15, It also ultimately doomed the Confederacy and its fading hopes for victory and independence. Finally, it left Atlanta burned, barren, and bankrupt. A New South City The scene that greeted those Atlanta residents who returned to the city in was grim indeed.

Despite these austere conditions, Atlanta emerged from the ashes to rebuild quickly—bigger, noisier, and with even greater ambitions and goals than before.

The impact of the railroads was felt all over the city. Industrial development also increased, and although the city never became an industrial center like Birmingham, Alabama, about a third of its economic base in the s was tied to manufacturing, including a large number of enterprises connected to railroads and cotton processing. Between and almost 20, people moved to the city, and by the population had grown to almost 90, Atlanta was now the largest city in the state and the third largest in the Southeast.

Adding to this growing population were large numbers of African Americans, drawn to the city by opportunities for education and employment. In African Americans in the city numbered less than 2,; by there were more than 35, black Atlantans—approximately 40 percent of the total population of the city. Many of these new African American residents clustered in segregated neighborhoods or communities adjacent to emerging black institutions of higher education—in east Atlanta in the Old Fourth Ward, where Morris Brown College was originally located; on the south side, where Clark College later Clark Atlanta University was first established; and on the west side, where Atlanta University later Clark Atlanta University and later Spelman and Morehouse colleges were located.

Elsewhere, black Atlantans were largely confined to low-lying, flood-prone areas and other less desirable sections of the city. Despite these restrictions, the presence of this strong nucleus of black colleges and growing economic opportunities laid the foundation for an emerging and influential black middle class. Better education particularly in industrial technology and engineering was also an important component of this philosophy, and in the Georgia Institute of Technology opened its doors in Atlanta to address this need.

Other white institutions of higher education in Atlanta included Oglethorpe University , which reopened after the Civil War, and Agnes Scott College for women, which opened in Decatur in and became the first college in metropolitan Atlanta to be accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

Henry Grady Equitable Building and other business and civic leaders of Atlanta during this period looked for opportunities to showcase the potential of the city and the New South, and one of their favorite devices was the grand fair or exposition. In Atlanta hosted the International Cotton Exposition , which drew , people from thirty-three states and seven foreign countries, and in the Piedmont Exposition opened with U. The grand showcase of them all, however, was the Cotton States and International Exposition, which featured buildings and exhibits devoted to minerals, agriculture, forestry, manufacturing, railroads, transportation, and electricity.

Modeled on the Chicago Columbian Exposition held two years earlier , the exposition also added a building devoted to the "New Woman" and a "Negro Building," designed, constructed, and managed by African Americans and intended to highlight the accomplishments and potential of black southerners. By the turn of the century, segregation ordinances and regulations commonly known as "Jim Crow" were firmly in place to keep the two groups apart and define their respective rights, privileges, and social status.

Washington, the most widely recognized black educator in the country, addressed the opening day crowds at the exposition, he provided a prescription for black development and progress that seemed to condone Jim Crow. Beyond the city limits new suburban developments arose, made possible by the presence first of the streetcar and later of the automobile. Louie Newton, editor of the City Builder magazine, lauded what he termed the "Atlanta Spirit"—the pervasive belief that whatever was good for business was good for Atlanta and all Atlantans.

In the process of promoting and implementing these changes, Atlanta was remade and its economic, cultural, and physical structure dramatically altered. In Ivan Allen Sr. Smith of the Atlanta Chamber of Commerce launched a national advertising campaign entitled "Forward Atlanta," which was designed to lure new businesses to the city and to encourage national corporations to establish their regional headquarters there.

Included among these businesses were such giants as Sears-Roebuck which built its southeastern retail and mail-order headquarters in Atlanta and General Motors which established a manufacturing plant in the city.

On the other side of the color line, a separate business and entertainment district for African Americans was growing along Auburn Avenue.

With the rise of Jim Crow and increased racial violence and hostility including a race riot , black businesses began to locate along the avenue in the old Fourth Ward, where a sizable African American residential community and influential black churches such as First Congregational, Big Bethel African Methodist Episcopal , Wheat Street Baptist, and Ebenezer Baptist were already present.

Black-owned and-operated office buildings and multi-use structures like the Rucker, Odd Fellows, and Herndon buildings , entertainment centers like the Top Hat Club , insurance companies Standard Life Insurance and Atlanta Life Insurance companies , stores, banks and lending institutions Citizen Trust Bank and Mutual Federal , hotels, restaurants, beauty schools, funeral homes, and newspapers including the Atlanta Independent and later the Atlanta Daily World were all located along the street that John Wesley Dobbs , a black fraternal, political, and civic leader, would dub "Sweet Auburn.

It is the heart of Negro big business, a result of Negro cooperation and evidence of Negro possibility. Race and race relations also played a part in the distribution of municipal services, as the city worked to build the infrastructure necessary to support rapid urban growth. For much of the early twentieth century, water and sewer lines in Atlanta lagged behind population growth, many roads remained unpaved, public schools were overcrowded and underfunded, and health care and social services were inadequate to the task at hand.

As late as , for example, the city spent less than 16 percent of its annual school funds on African American students. Washington—which opened on the west side of Atlanta in In a violent race riot broke out in Atlanta. When the bloodshed finally ended, the city officially listed twelve dead ten black and two white and seventy injured, although newspaper accounts reported a much higher number of deaths.

In tensions and emotions erupted again during the trial of Leo Frank , a Jewish businessman, accused of the murder of Mary Phagan, a young white factory worker. In , after his death sentence was commuted to life imprisonment, Frank was forcibly taken from his Milledgeville jail cell by a mob and lynched in Marietta.

Both the race riot and the Leo Frank lynching had far-ranging results. The race riot also contributed to the formation of local organizations dedicated to easing racial tensions and violence, such as the Commission on Inter-Racial Cooperation and the Association of Southern Women for the Prevention of Lynching.

Both events also contributed, in part, to the reemergence of the Ku Klux Klan. By almost half of all Atlantans listed in the Social Register lived north of Ansley Park—many of them in Buckhead, which grew from a population of 2, in to 10, ten years later. Automobiles were not the only new mode of transportation to make its mark in this period. The airplane also made its appearance in the city in the s, and by the end of the decade, Atlanta had an airfield, a passenger terminal, air mail and passenger routes, and an early connection with the airline industry that would serve the city well in the future.

The person most responsible for establishing this air connection was a young city councilman who would later become the longtime mayor of Atlanta— William B.

By the eve of World War II , Atlanta was the center of an impressive network of air-, car, and rail lines. In the decades to follow, these transportation links expanded and grew in importance as Atlanta established its preeminent position as the transportation capital of the Southeast. The Great Depression and World War II The growth and prosperity that characterized Atlanta during the early decades of the twentieth century were shaken by the severe economic depression that gripped the nation in the s.

Like many cities in the South, Atlanta was poorly prepared to meet the emergency. In fact, Fulton County Sewing Project Atlanta ranked last among similar-sized cities in the nation in in terms of its per capita expenditures for welfare, and there were few municipal agencies or programs in place to help the rapidly growing number of unemployed. Relief for unemployed and underemployed Atlantans finally arrived in the early s with the inauguration of Franklin D.

Atlanta took full advantage of the funds and resources made available by these New Deal programs and became one of the first cities in the nation to have a federally operated relief program. The idea for these projects had originated with an Atlanta real estate developer, Charles F. Palmer, who wished to rid the city of some of its slums and replace them with federally funded public housing. Also involved in lobbying for this public housing was John Hope , president of Atlanta University.

By the late s the severity of the depression in Atlanta was beginning to lessen. Private business was picking up, the federal government trimmed the number of WPA workers in the city, the banks were all back in operation, and aviation continued to be a growth industry for Atlanta. It would take World War II and the industrial development and expenditures associated with that effort, however, to return Atlanta to full prosperity and launch the city into a new era of growth and transformation.

It expended millions more on such related projects as public housing, health-care facilities, and aid to schools near military facilities.

Thousands of soldiers and military support personnel passed through or were stationed in Atlanta during the war at area bases and support facilities, including Fort McPherson , Fort Gillem , the Naval Air Station , and the Army Hospital and Airfield. War-related industries also played a key role in the local economy. About Atlanta businesses devoted their total output to the war effort.

The largest of these operations was the Bell Bomber later, Bell Aircraft plant, located in Marietta, which employed 28, workers including a sizeable number of women and African Americans at its peak in Another famous Atlanta business connected with the war effort was Coca-Cola , which distributed Cokes to servicemen and -women around the world during the war for five cents a bottle and, in the process, became a truly international corporation.


This list of museums in Georgia contains museums which are defined for this context as institutions (including nonprofit organizations, government entities, and private businesses) that collect and care for objects of cultural, artistic, scientific, or historical interest and make their collections or related exhibits available for public viewing.. . Link to Departments website. The major in Accounting at UGA is designed to give students an understanding of the theory of accounting as it is used in our society: accounting standards, financial statement preparation, product costs, budgeting, taxation, auditing, risk assessment, and controls.

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