Atlanta, capital of the state of Georgia, with 394,000 inhabitants. It is the state’s largest city and the major industrial, traffic, trade, and financial center of the southeastern United States. The industry produces foodstuffs and stimulants (coca-cola), textiles, fertilizers, means of transport and chemicals.
South of the city is a major international airport (Hartsfield Atlanta International Airport). Numerous banks and insurance companies have their headquarters there for the south. The city is home to many higher education institutions, including Atlanta University Center (1867), Emory University (1836), Georgia Institute of Technology (1885), and Georgia State University (1913).
Atlanta is the seat of a Roman Catholic Archbishop and the headquarters of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, whose leader Martin Luther King, assassinated in 1968, is buried in Atlanta. Atlanta is a very prosperous city.
Giant skyscrapers were built in the city center at a rapid pace in the 1960s and 1970s; public transport was expanded with an underground during that period. The roof of the Capitol (1889) was provided with a layer of gold leaf in 1960. The High Museum of Art (1983) was designed by Richard Meier. Also worth seeing are the Atlanta Memorial Arts Center, the Atlanta Museum, the ML King Jr. Historic Site, the Carter Presidential Center, the Atlanta Civic Center, the Atlanta Stadium and the Cyclorama (a 122 m long panorama painting). The center is surrounded by beautiful suburbs.
Atlanta was founded in 1837 as the starting point of a railroad northbound (later part of the Western and Atlantic Railroad). It quickly grew in importance, but was severely battered in the Civil War in 1864. In 1868 it became the capital of Georgia.
Atlanta was the first major city in the southern United States to have a black mayor (1973). The 1996 Summer Olympics took place in Atlanta.