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Facts About Atlanta

Atlanta Atlanta is the capital city of the state of Georgia. It was established in 1847, making it relatively young, but a solid economy and a major amount of traveling visitors have made Atlanta grow very quickly. In less than 200 years, it has become one of the most well known, populous and successful cities in the United States.

The passing through type of travel that one sees in Atlanta's bustling highways and extremely busy airport is actually the reason Atlanta exists. Plans for a railroad began in 1836. Within a few years, the railroad was built through what is now Atlanta and a small settlement had sprung up there. By 1842, what was to become Atlanta was a town of 30 residents named Marthasville. Five years later, the name became Atlantica-Pacifica. Obviously a mouthful, the name was shortened to Atlanta and it became official in December of 1847.

Atlanta had nearly 10,000 residents by the time the Civil War came around. Unfortunately, the town was one of the most affected by the war. Thanks to the railroad running straight through it, supplies were shipped to and through Atlanta for the Confederacy. Eventually, the town became a target for the Union Army. General Hood retreated from Atlanta, so as not to be defeated there. The town's civilians stayed, but when General Sherman arrived, he ordered them to leave and had Atlanta burned to the ground, with the exception of churches and hospitals. Therefore, in a way, the Atlanta of today began only after the Civil War was lost by the south.

It was only roughly a year before people began rebuilding Atlanta in the wake of the Civil War. A city was born from the settlement's ashes and it became the most important city in the state of Georgia. Sadly, the bigotry that had partially led to the Civil War remained in Atlanta. In 1915, a Jew by the name of Leo Frank was hanged for his beliefs by a lynch mob. Nearly 20 years later, the actress who played Mammy in Gone with the Wind was barred from the opening of a movie she starred in, just because she was black.

Slowly, the people of Atlanta became more tolerant and the population became more diverse in color. Today, it is a hub culture, commerce and education. The population has been predominately black after several censuses, but there are also a large number of white, Hispanic and Asian residents. Atlanta truly is a melting pot.