Georgia History

Today we celebrate America’s independence from British rule. To get a sense of the role Georgia played in the struggle for liberty, we spoke with Stan Deaton, senior historian for the Georgia Historical Society. He takes us back to the time of the American Revolution, to the colony of Georgia’s first capitol in Savannah.

To learn more about the Georgians involved in the founding of the country, Deaton suggests checking out the Georgia Department of Humanities' New Georgia Encyclopdedia online.

Moultrie Creek / Flickr

The Federal Reserve's roots trace back to Georgia’s Jekyll Island. It all started in November 1910, when  six men secretly convened at the Jekyll Island Club to reform the country's banking system. The participants did not admit that the meeting happened until the 1930s.


On Second Thought For Monday, June 4, 2018

Jun 4, 2018
GPB

The 1954 Supreme Court decision Brown v. Board of Education made segregation of America’s public schools illegal. But decades before Thurgood Marshall argued for Linda Brown's right to attend the all-white school closest to her house in Topeka, Kansas, lawsuits brought by little girls and young women chipped away at the foundations of segregated education. New research finds their grassroots efforts paved the way for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People's (NAACP) legal battle to integrate schools nationally.


Sadayuki Mikami / AP

Maynard Jackson Jr. was an Atlanta legend. As the first black mayor of a major southern city, Jackson pushed for businesses to adopt affirmative action programs, expanded the Atlanta airport to become the international hub it is today and also led the campaign to bring the 1996 Summer Olympics to Georgia.

 

Jackson's life and legacy are the focus of the new documentary, "Maynard," which was executive produced by his daughter-in-law Wendy Jackson and his son Maynard Jackson III.

This week we’re hearing how some descendants are passing along Gullah heritage to the next generation. Patricia West is a writer and professor at Savannah State University. She was inspired to document her family’s roots after discovering her great great-grandmother’s grave on a trip to the family cemetery. 

The Scott-West family is also looking for ways to celebrate their history. Later this week, we will join them at the centuries-old cemetery where their American heritage begins, for a libations ceremony honoring ancestors.

Rachel Parker

A flood devastated Rome, Georgia in 1886. According to local lore the waters rose high enough for a steamboat to float down Broad Street, the town’s main thoroughfare. This event inspired city leaders to elevate the street, and all the buildings along it. Business owners recently opened up their basement doors for people to tour the remains of old Rome. We took the tour, and brought back this audio postcard. 

Georgia Historical Society, which is based in Savannah, is the keeper of stories and documents about the people and events that have shaped our state. Senior Historian Stan Deaton shares the story of the first contentious election for U.S. President and the Georgian who was at the heart of the story.