A number of significant historical events have occurred in Georgia during the month of July.



The founders of Congregation Mickve Israel, the South’s oldest Jewish congregation, arrived in Savannah.


The Battle of Bloody Marsh, a skirmish between English and Spanish forces on St. Simons Island, took place on July 7.



Following its defeat in the Revolutionary War, the British army left Savannah on July 11.



Wesleyan College  in Macon, the first degree-granting women’s college in the world, graduated its inaugural class.

Wesleyan Students
Wesleyan Students

Courtesy of Georgia Archives.



The Georgia Military Institute opened in Marietta and remained open through the end of the Civil War.


During  the Atlanta Campaign of the Civil War, the Battle of Atlanta took place on July 22. That same month Union general William T. Sherman ordered approximately 400 mill workers in Roswell, mostly women, to be arrested as traitors and shipped with their children as prisoners to the North.


The Atlanta Constitution published the first Uncle Remus story by Joel Chandler Harris on July 20.


Thomasville  native Henry O. Flipper enrolled in the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, and later became the first African American to graduate from that institution.

Henry O. Flipper
Henry O. Flipper

Courtesy of U.S Military Academy at West Point


Mormon missionary Joseph Standing was murdered on July 21 in Whitfield County while traveling to a church conference.


Elberton was christened the “Granite City” on July 6 by the Elberton Star newspaper for its role in the granite industry.



The   state legislature proposed and approved an amendment to the state constitution creating the Court of Appeals of Georgia.

Court of Appeals Motto
Court of Appeals Motto

Photograph by S. Sean Barrett


One of the most notorious trials in Georgia history began when Leo Frank was charged in Fulton County Superior Court with the first-degree murder of thirteen-year-old Mary Phagan.


Asa Candler, former president of the Coca-Cola Company, offered a gift of $1 million to open a new Methodist college. This donation led to the creation of what would become Emory University in Atlanta.


Souther Field,  the site of aviator Charles Lindbergh’s first solo flight, was built in Sumter County during World War I.

Souther Field, ca. 1920
Souther Field, ca. 1920

Courtesy of Georgia Archives.


Golfing great Bobby Jones won the U.S. Open on his way to becoming the first golfer to claim a Grand Slam.


Communist organizer Angelo Herndon was arrested on charges of attempting to incite an insurrection in Atlanta.


Margaret Mitchell  sold the movie rights to Gone With the Wind for $50,000, an unprecedented sum for a first novel.

Margaret Mitchell and Clark Gable
Margaret Mitchell and Clark Gable

Courtesy of Atlanta Journal-Constitution.


Primus E. King challenged the white primary system in Georgia by attempting to vote at the Muscogee County Courthouse on July 4 in Columbus.


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta was established.



The  Atlanta International Raceway (later Atlanta Motor Speedway) hosted its first race on July 31.

Atlanta Motor Speedway
Atlanta Motor Speedway

Courtesy of Atlanta Motor Speedway


The Americus Movement to protest segregation in that town began with marches against the Martin Theater.


Martin Luther King Jr.

attended the July 2 signing ceremony for the Civil Rights Act at the White House.


The Georiga Agrirama (later the Georgia Museum of Agriculture and Historic Village) opened in Tifton.

Hank Aaron, hitting his 755th and final home run, set the all-time record for career home runs on July 20.


U.S. president Jimmy Carter awarded Martin Luther King Jr. the Presidential Medal of Freedom.


The   Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base at St. Marys was commissioned.

Kings Bay Submarine
Kings Bay Submarine

Courtesy of Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay


Georgia’s current state constitution went into effect on July 1.


The first Goodwill Games, sponsored by Ted Turner, began in Moscow, Russia.


On July 10 the groundbreaking ceremony for Centennial Olympic Stadium took place in Atlanta, where the 1996 Olympic Games would commence three years and nine days later.


The  Flint River overflowed its banks when tropical storm Alberto stalled over western Georgia.


Alton Brown’s television cooking program Good Eats premiered on the Food Network.

Celestine Sibley’s final column for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution ran on July 25.

July Birthdays

July 31, 1782                      Oliver H. Prince, politician

July 9, 1793                        Charles McDonald, governor

July 1810                            Nelson Tift, politician

July 2, 1810                        Robert Toombs, politician

July 19, 1814                      Patrick Hues Mell, religious figure

July 3, 1827                        Logan Bleckley, judge

July 9, 1835                        William J. Northen, governor

July 27, 1850                      E. K. Love, religious figure

July 31, 1850                      Joel Hurt, businessman

July 16, 1851                      Mildred Lewis Rutherford, Confederate memorialist

July 27, 1852                      George Foster Peabody, philanthropist

July 5, 1858                        Will Harben, writer

July 1863                            Walter White, civil rights advocate

July 10, 1871                      Hugh M. Dorsey, governor

July 4, 1877                        Clifford Walker, governor

July 6, 1893                        William C. Pauley, landscape architect

July 17, 1897                      Elbert Parr Tuttle, judge

July 14, 1898                      Alexander Brook, artist

July 1, 1899                        “Georgia Tom” Dorsey, musician

July 9, 1899                        Ellamae Ellis League, architect

July 4, 1900                        Nellie Mae Rowe, artist

July 6, 1901                        Charles McCartney (“Goat Man”), religious figure

July 25, 1903                      Walter J. Brown, journalist

July 13, 1905                      Ben Shute, artist

July 4, 1908                        St. EOM, artist

July 22, 1912                      R. A. Miller, artist

July 29, 1912                      Clarence Jordan, religious figure

July 17, 1914                      Culver Kidd, politician

July 3, 1918                        Ernest Vandiver Jr., governor

July 17, 1924                      Olive Ann Burns, writer

July 11, 1925                      Mattiwilda Dobbs, musician

July 18, 1927                      Slater King, civil rights advocate

July 22, 1927                      Edward J. Cashin, historian

July 29, 1927                      Horace T. Ward, civil rights advocate

July 28, 1928                      Leroy Johnson, civil rights advocate

July 1, 1933                        Jean Childs Young, educator

July 8, 1941                        Hamilton Holmes, civil rights advocate

July 22, 1941                      James H. Blanchard, businessman

July 11, 1947                      Francine Reed, musician

July 5, 1950                        Earl T. Shinhoster, civil rights advocate

July 13, 1953                      Greg Johnson, writer

July 4, 1961                        Margaret Edson, writer

July 30, 1962                      Alton Brown, television personality

July 22, 1963                      Emily Saliers of the Indigo Girls, musician

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Atlanta Motor Speedway

Atlanta Motor Speedway

Atlanta Motor Speedway fans stand for a restart during the Bass ProShops MBNA 500. The speedway holds a total number of 124,000 permanent seats and 141 luxury suites.

Courtesy of Atlanta Motor Speedway

Souther Field, ca. 1920

Souther Field, ca. 1920

Souther Field would have looked identical to this composite aerial photograph when Charles Lindbergh arrived in 1923. Running horizontally along the top is Souther Road; the structure on the left is the train depot. Lining Souther Road are administrative buildings and barracks for army personnel. Fourteen hangars and two additional structures border the administrative buildings and the grassy field where Lindbergh practiced his take-offs and landings. Lindbergh slept in one of these hangars during his three weeks at the field, and his JN-4 Jenny biplane would have been assembled in one. During World War I Souther Field was home to 1,400 army personnel.

Courtesy of Georgia Archives.