Posts

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Ever taken a wrong turn in Atlanta

If you’ve lived in Atlanta longer than about a day and a half, chances are pretty good that you have discovered navigating Atlanta’s road system can be a bit challenging and I’m pretty sure you didn’t need me to tell you that. I’ll never forget my first day driving in Atlanta as someone from another […]

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This demolition was a tad ironic

The hubbub began back in 2012 when an application was submitted that would lead to the demolition of a building located at 771 Spring Street. The building in question, the Crum and Forster building, had been constructed around 1926 and it served as the Atlanta location of the the Crum and Forster Insurance Company. The […]

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The Bloody Sunday Blues

Bloody Sunday is surreal. It was an uncanny experience even for this seasoned journalist to encounter civil rights icon, Atlanta Congressman John Lewis, holding court and counseling youngsters at the apex of the Edmund Pettis Bridge on Sunday March 6th about the significance and substance of this memorable day in Black history.

Jenkins house, Eatonton, Georgia

Historic Georgia landscapes in bloom

This week guest columnist GLENN T. ESKEW, a Georgia State University professor, explores historic landscapes.

For the second time, the inclement weather had passed north of Atlanta, and I found myself heading south to attend yet another history conference. The academic year was in full swing, and scholars like the winter months for symposia. Rather than take the interstate, I prefer riding back roads and drove down Georgia Highway 15 through the old Cotton Belt.

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The sum of its parts

It is natural for any city to brag a little about itself … but in Atlanta, boosterism is a way of life. That, however, does not change the fact that there are many things about Atlanta that are worth bragging about. I guess we were just in a little bit of a reflective mood this […]

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It’s time for music in Georgia

This week, guest columnist STANLEY ROMANSTEIN of Georgia State University makes a case for supporting the music industry in Georgia.

How do we create and promote a viable, growing, sustainable music industry in our state? Lieutenant Governor Zell Miller first put that question to the Georgia General Assembly in 1978 by naming both a Senate Music Recording Industry Study Committee and a Music Recording Industry Advisory Committee.

Osogbo: Art and Heritage and Controversy

Robin Ligon-Williams fashions herself as the modern day reincarnation of Susanne Wenger, the late creator of the Osogbo School of Art. But Williams’ passion for the African art form, coupled with a January exhibition of her collection and her practice of the IFA religion may be why she was recently fired from her Fulton County job.

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Celebrating southern songwriter Johnny Mercer

This week guest columnist GLENN T. ESKEW, discusses Johnny Mercer’s connection to the Great American Songbook and Georgia State University.

On Friday, February 26 at 8 p.m. Georgia State University will hold its biannual Mercer Celebration at the Rialto Center for the Arts with a performance by trumpeter Joe Gransden joined by vocalist Kathleen Bertrand and the Georgia State University Big Band. With this concert, Georgia State University celebrates native son Johnny Mercer, as well as its own good fortune in housing Mercer’s memorabilia, donated to the university by his widow, Ginger, in June 1981.

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The dragon that reaches out and grabs you

It was the childhood drowning of his older sister in a river near Gloucester, Massachusetts that sparked Roger Babson’s life-long interest in finding a way to control the effects of gravity. So motivated was he, that Babson wrote an essay titled “Gravity – Our Enemy No. 1.” Speaking of his sister in the essay he […]

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Helen Matthews Lewis, mountain saint

Recently, Atlanta actor Brenda Bynum introduced me to Helen Matthews Lewis through a brilliant one-person play. The locale was the Craddock Center of Cherry Log, Georgia, an educational and cultural venue for children, families, and communities in southern Appalachia. Helen Lewis is a native Georgian and professional sociologist who helped found the discipline of Appalachian Studies, an academic movement that combines scholarship, teaching, and community engagement in the South’s mountain region.

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Sort of a milestone

With the posting of this week’s story, we reach a milestone, of sorts. When we first started the Stories of Atlanta, we really didn’t have a plan. We just had all of these facts about the City of Atlanta that we found interesting and, with the thought that others might also find them interesting, we […]

Bullard and his French Foreign Legion comrades during World War I

Eugene Bullard: boxer, soldier, fighter pilot, spy, and elevator operator

This week guest columnist CHRIS DOBBS, editorial assistant for the New Georgia Encyclopedia, shares the story of Eugene Bullard, son of a former slave, and the first black fighter pilot.

Eugene Bullard was born in Columbus, Georgia, in 1895. As an expatriate in France, he became a boxer, soldier, fighter pilot, business owner, and spy. During his final years, in the United States, he was an elevator operator. Bullard’s story is particularly engaging. He was obviously a tight spring of potential as a boy, and it’s fascinating to see how high he flew as soon as the environment around him allowed it. The difference between his life in the United States and his life in Europe lends his life its striking cinematic scale.

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Remembering the legacy Commerce Club

By Maria Saporta It has been more than five years since the Commerce Club moved from its original location near Five Points to the 191 Peachtree building. The prestigious Commerce Club is now more than 55 years old, and its Atlanta history runs deep. That was obvious on Saturday, Feb. 6 when there was a […]

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Why history matters

This week guest columnist PEARL MCHANEY, a Georgia State University professor, discusses how voices from our past speak to our present.

With inflammatory rhetoric about citizenship, the value of lives black, brown, and white, and the memorialization/revision of history, I feel that hearing the carefully written words of Booker T. Washington, W. E. B. Du Bois, Richard Wright, and Ernest Gaines will help to ground us in our shared past and give us opportunity to engage in reasoned discourse.