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 […]
Category: Stories of Atlanta
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 […]
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 […]
For a woman of her time, she took the road less traveled
Rebecca was older than Atlanta. By the time the tiny railroad terminus had been carved out of the north Georgia wilderness, she had lived for 3 years and, by the time she reached the age of 7, Rebecca was lucky enough to be given a seat on the very first passenger train to leave the […]
The Measure of a Man’s Character
Our story this week is about Atlanta-born Walter White. On the surface, it is the story of a man who found his calling, applied himself and eventually took a place on the national stage. But in reality, this story is much more than a chronicle of a man’s career path. Walter White was born in […]
Given our history, it’s not surprising how things turned out
One of Atlanta’s first nicknames was The Gate City and, like the city itself, the nickname originated because of the railroad. That sort of thing happens when you become one of America’s premier railroad hubs. Today, though, it can be difficult to visualize the extent of the railroads’ effect on downtown Atlanta. Union Station, […]
Everybody knew her but nobody ever met her
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 […]
He called it the way he saw it
The old saying “a penny for your thoughts” is, by current standards, too expensive. We are living in a era where seemingly everyone is “on the record” about…everything. We blog, vlog, tweet and post about whatever thought enters our head. In the opinion of some, we’ve gone a little too far in sharing our pontifications. […]
Seek and ye shall find, right?
The flood of movie stars visiting Atlanta in recent years not withstanding, Atlanta has had a long history of entertaining visiting luminaries, dignitaries, politicians and a host of other individuals who Atlantans generally wanted to be seen with.
They would have rung a bell if only they’d had one
Consider the question of fire in the early days of Atlanta. How would anybody who wasn’t immediately affected by the fire know that there actually was a fire? I’m not talking about the “big” fire that resulted from Sherman’s occupation but the everyday, commonplace fires that were all too frequent in a city built largely of wood.
It was an actual proposal
It is a common occurrence for cities to change the name of streets and Atlanta is no exception to that practice. With the passage of time, the old street names mean less to the newer generations than to previous generations and there is a natural desire to want to honor the contributions of more contemporary individuals.
A small remnant of antebellum Atlanta
Mathew Brady is known as one of America’s first photographers. It was Brady who personally financed and oversaw the effort to photographically document the Civil War. At his own expense, he hired a team of photographers who traveled with various Union armies and together those photographers produced over 10,000 plates; a body of work which […]
It’s a case of what might have been
Oglethorpe University began its career as a liberal arts and sciences university in 1835 in the community of Midway, Georgia, not too far from, what at that time, was the state’s capital, Milledgeville. The Civil War interrupted Oglethorpe’s progression and the university closed its doors in 1862.
She lived long enough to realize what might have been
In 1826 the State of Georgia ordered a transportation survey to be undertaken. Ostensibly, the purpose of the survey was to evaluate the feasibility of building a canal through North Georgia and up into the frontier of Tennessee. Such a conveyance, it was reasoned, would allow Georgia merchants to gain access to the northern part […]
From Atlanta He Sold to the World
As sure as there is breakfast, lunch and dinner, there is snacking. Satisfying those between-meal cravings is a need we all have. While some people are able to eat healthy snacks, many of us cannot resist the lure of less healthy foods. Snacking certainly is not a new innovation. It goes back, in some […]
It was an unusual home run to say the least
Atlanta’s major league baseball team, the Braves, began their Atlanta baseball history in 1966 but baseball’s history in Georgia predates the Atlanta Braves by nearly 100 years. Before the Braves, there were the Atlanta Crackers, a member of the Southern League and the Atlanta Black Crackers, charter members of the Negro Southern League. Though they […]
It was unusual, unheard of and it happened in Atlanta
It is obvious that for pretty much everything there had to be a beginning, a first, something that got the ball rolling. Sometimes if you’re the first you get to control the category. The name of your product actually becomes the name of all products in the same category: Coke, Kleenex, Jello, Xerox, Gatorade, Cuties. […]
It’s unlikely that this record will ever be broken
When asked to name something that is quintessentially American, right after apple pie people usually will say…baseball. It is a long-held belief that baseball is, in fact, America’s national pastime. And while there are many who maintain that football has eclipsed baseball in American popularity, it is hard to argue with the facts of baseball’s […]
The race does not always go to the fastest…or does it?
This week’s story comes to us from Saporta Report reader and all-around Atlanta history buff Greg Hodges who wrote to ask if we knew the story of Richard Petty’s 1959 victory at Atlanta’s Lakewood Speedway. We did not and it turns out that it is just our kind of story. Long-time Atlantans will remember the […]
A caring parent can make all the difference
History is replete with examples of the power of one person to make a difference. There are, in fact, so many examples of the ability of one person to affect change that what is surprising is that we still marvel when it happens. Such is the case with Selena Butler. Selena Sloan Butler was born […]