Entries by Lance Russell

Thanks to him…we know

Much of our knowledge of Civil War Atlanta comes from the work of the official photographer of the Army of the Mississippi, George Barnard. Assigned to document military camps, fortifications and rail lines, Barnard followed General William Sherman and his troops on their infamous March to the Sea. In the process of completing his assigned […]

A name we should know

The name Martin Amorous is not one that most Atlantans associate with the development of the City of Atlanta but that doesn’t diminish his contribution to the well-being of our city, not in the least.

Martin Amorous was born in Savannah, in 1858. His father , Mathias Amorous, was a proud Spaniard from Barcelona who captained a merchantman sailing vessel and he made frequent trips to the Americas.

The woman who wasn’t there

It is safe to say that the era of the grand department store is a thing of the past. It was wonderful while it lasted but, as they say, nothing lasts forever. It was the department store that helped to lead the way into the salad days of the post WWII boom and then went on to anchor the explosion of shopping malls that populated just about every suburb in America.

It’s apparently a small world after all

Grady Hospital first opened its doors in 1892 with 14 rooms and the mission to offer the best hospital care possible regardless of a person’s social status. Since opening its doors, thousands of people from all walks of life have turned to Grady to receive care and comfort in their hour of need. Over the years, the hospital has gained an excellent international reputation as a public hospital and it has grown to become the largest hospital in the State of Georgia, public or private.

A busy store on a busy corner

Our intent this week was to talk about Atlanta and her visitors. Any city that attains any sort of momentum attracts interesting visitors…some famous, some not so much. But with every visitor comes a story and this week we were going to tell a visitor story. A pretty good one too. Kind of a Day the Earth Stood Still thriller, only, not the whole earth, just a little corner in Georgia. Anyway, that was all before we discovered Miss Fluffy Raffles.

Fluffy is not a name one just skips past without pausing to at least express, “What the heck?” And to no one’s surprise, there is a bit of a story attached with Miss Raffles. On the surface, it’s a story of a playful woman who for almost two weeks tweaked the collective noses of an entire city and became front-page news in the process.

The Stories continue

With the posting of this story…scratch that…with the release of this shameless, self-congratulatory, video attempt at associating the Stories of Atlanta brand with long-cherished American ideals such as freedom of speech and the right to assembly…we’d like to acknowledge the start of the 3rd season of the Stories of Atlanta. Last week marked the end […]

His request has been honored

Even Atlanta, with it comparatively young history, is not without its colorful characters. And one of Atlanta’s more interesting individuals was Jasper Newton Smith. Smith was an Atlanta businessman during the city’s reconstruction days. He owned a business at what is today the intersection of Peachtree and 14th Streets.

Jasper Smith, or Jack as he was known, was a brick maker and you can imagine that, at a time when Atlanta was rebuilding from the devastation of the Civil War, a guy who made bricks was in high demand. High enough demand to make Jack Smith wealthy. By some accounts, Smith’s company produced somewhere in the neighborhood of 10 million bricks.

A lasting legacy

It will come as no surprise to anyone that Peachtree Street was not always the bastion of business that it is today. At the turn of the 20th century, Peachtree Street was a tree-lined avenue with magnificent mansions on either side. It was a neighborhood…a neighborhood filled with well-to-do residents but a neighborhood none the […]

For the want of a floodlight

There are few better examples of the value of long-term planning than Atlanta’s airport. Atlanta did not blindly stumble into its status as an aviation powerhouse; it got there purposefully, thanks to the forward thinking of several Atlanta citizens. And it began with airmail. A byproduct of World War 1 was the significant advancements made […]