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Marietta: Recreation


The first stop to make on a visit to Marietta is at the Welcome Center to pick up tour maps; the Center is in the renovated train station right off Marietta Square. The revitalized square is an entertainment mecca with several popular nightspots, restaurants, and the renovated Theater in the Square. The focal point of the square is Glover Park, where winding brick paths lead to a majestic, three-tiered fountain, to an ornate Victorian gazebo, and to a scaled-down replica of "The General," a celebrated Civil War locomotive, where children can climb, slide, and pretend. The park is the location for frequent special events, festivals and concerts.

A walking tour of the downtown features at least 100 homes and buildings that span the period from antebellum to Victorian and evoke the sentiment and beauty of days gone by. The William Root House, the city's oldest residence, houses a museum depicting life in Cobb County during the 1840s and is open from Tuesdays to Saturdays. Other structures include classic Victorian, Queen Anne, Greek Revival, and Plantation Plain-style residences. The 1854 Greek classic style First Presbyterian Church, St. James Episcopal Church, and the 1866 Zion Baptist Church are part of the Historic District's walking tour. Other buildings of note include former general stores, a "Breakfast House" hotel, and a former hardware store. The Episcopal Cemetery is the burial place of many early well-known local citizens.

Not far from the center of town, Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park, a Civil War fortress, provides miles of wood trails, original earthworks and cannons that stand as silent witnesses to the decisive battle in which Confederate troops, vastly outnumbered, defended Kennesaw Mountain in a bloody effort to block Sherman's March to Atlanta. At the visitor's center a ten-minute slide presentation briefs visitors on the battle that took place and exhibits depict the harsh conditions the soldiers endured in the front ranks. At the park, visitors may walk on the grounds and view the family cemetery of the Kolb Farm, a significant battle site during the Civil War. Marietta is one of only two U.S. cities with both a Confederate and a Union Cemetery. The Confederate Cemetery is the final resting place for more than 3,000 Confederate soldiers. At the nearby 23-acre National Cemetery, more than 10,000 Union soldiers, 3,000 of whom are unknown, rest alongside veterans of five subsequent wars.

Well worth a visit is the Concord Covered Bridge, one of the few remaining covered bridges in operation, nestled on Nickajack Creek alongside historic Ruff's Mill. Both sites are national landmarks and part of a historic district that also features nineteenth century homes and the Concord Woolen Mills. Another interesting spot is home to the remains of the nineteenth-century Marietta Manufacturing Mill on the banks of the Sope Creek.

At the East Cobb Children's Museum, school-age children can participate in historical tours, and dress in authentic period costumes. The museum also offers live puppet shows and classroom excursions. The Aurora, a horse-drawn 1879 Silsby Steamer, is on display at the Marietta Fire Museum. It has been fully renovated and is said to be the best-restored engine of its kind in the world. The Kennesaw Civil War Museum, formerly know as The Big Shanty Museum, in Kennesaw provides a close-up look at "The General," a steam locomotive that caused quite a stir in 1862 when Union soldiers known as Andrew's Raiders hijacked it and sped northwest to damage the line and seal off Chattanooga in the Civil War campaign. Classic cars and the largest selection of miniature die-cast cars in the Southeast are on display at the Auto Motif in Smyrna. Marietta also features a Gone With The Wind Museum: Scarlett on the Square opened in 2003 and maintains a wide variety of memorabilia from the 1939 classic. Located within the historic Kennesaw House is the Marietta Museum of History that displays such items as Civil War uniforms and a local photograpy collection.

Youngsters are enthusiastic participants at Six Flags White Water, a 35-acre park featuring more than two dozen specialty water rides including speed slides and body flumes. Marietta's newest family draw is American Adventures, a "turn of the century" entertainment park with rides, games, and attractions that is also part of the Six Flags family. Another mammoth attraction, which is located in the southwestern corner of the county, is Six Flags Over Georgia amusement park, home of the Great American Scream Machine, The Free Fall, Z Force and other thrilling rides, musical revues and top name entertainers. Skull Island debuted there in 2004 and features three water-dumping towers, six water slides, and many other water-related activities. Sun Valley Beach, the South's largest swimming pool, with 2 million gallons, is located on one-and-a-half acres of land and provides sun and games at its Powder Springs location.

No visit to Marietta would be complete without paying respects to the "Big Chicken," a local landmark. In 1963 a Marietta restaurateur wanted a focal point for his eatery and commissioned a Georgia Tech student to create a plucky, triangular-shaped fowl, complete with eyes that rolled, a beak that snapped open and shut, and a comb that dipped in the breeze. At one point, a hydraulic lift made the bird operational, but for the most part it stands as a silent object of wonder for foreign visitors who have declared it to be "so American" and an important element of Marietta folklore. The Big Chicken has inspired the "Gran Poulet," an art festival featuring fowl-inspired works of every description.

Arts and Culture

The best in professional live theater, both contemporary and classical, is offered by the award-winning 225-seat Theatre In the Square opened in 1982 at its renovated home on Marietta Square. Classical music concerts are offered by the Cobb Symphony, established in 1951, and the Jubilee Concert Series at the Galleria Centre. The Georgia Ballet performs regularly at the Cobb County Civic Center.

The Marietta/Cobb Museum of Art is located just off the Square. The museum's permanent exhibit is complemented by workshops, lectures, poetry readings, special art showings and children's activities. Art lovers can also visit the Mable House Cultural Center in the southern portion of Cobb County. Smyrna's Lillie Glassblowers allows spectators to watch as liquid crystal is transformed into exquisite designs for artistic and scientific purposes.

Festivals and Holidays

Annual events in Marietta involve a wide variety of activities. The last weekend in April brings the Taste of Marietta food festival. In spring, Cobb Landmarks and Historical Society sponsors "Through The Garden Gate," a spring tour of gardens in the city. In May and October, arts, crafts, and food concessions fill Glover Park at Historic Marietta Arts & Crafts Festival, and performances, exhibits, and an artists' market are presented at The Art Place-Mountain View's Arts Fest and have been dubbed "May-Retta Daze" and "Harvest Square." Summer brings the Glover Park Concert Series, a variety of musical presentations that extend through June, July, and August. The Fourth of July celebration starts the day with a parade and is filled with food and completed by fireworks at dusk. Labor Day Weekend's Art in the Park at Marietta Square showcases local artists' paintings, photography and pottery in Glover Park. September ushers in the Historic Marietta Antique Street Festival that was established in 1992 and draws over 125 antiques dealers from across the state. Late September's North Georgia State Fair at Miller Park features carnival rides, top name entertainment, contests, and special attractions. Theatre In The Square Presents "the 1940's Radio Hour," a song and dance extravaganza performed at Marietta Square during November, December, and January. December brings The Marietta Pilgrimage: A Christmas Home Tour featuring six private historic homes decorated for the holidays. Audiences enjoy the holiday excitement of the Georgia Ballet's performances of "The Nutcracker" at Cobb County Civic Center. Each spring the city celebrates Founder's Day, when the City Square is decked out for a weekend festival, the highlight of which is an antique show.

Sports for the Spectator

Al Bishop Softball Complex is the site of numerous national/regional softball tournaments on its five lighted playing fields. Marietta's professional sports fans have an exciting series of events to choose from by making the fifteen-mile trip to nearby Atlanta, home to five professional franchises. Atlanta also hosts many collegiate competitions.

Sports for the Participant

The Cobb County Parks, Recreation, & Cultural Affairs Department, one of the largest in the Southeast, consists of 35 parks covering more than 2,000 acres. Tennis, swimming, softball, gymnastics, and soccer are offered, as are arts and crafts classes and informational programs. Marietta has an impressive network of municipal parks, most fully equipped with playground facilities, athletic fields and tennis courts. Wildwood Park, a beautiful 28-acre site, is equipped with a unique "Adventure Challenge Course," one of the largest in the state, plus a one-third mile self-guided Sensory Trail for the Blind. At the site of the former Marietta County Club, the Marietta City Club opened as Cobb County's first public Professional Golfer's Association standard golf course on 126 acres and a professional shop. Visitors to Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park enjoy five marked hiking trails, the longest of which extends for sixteen miles. Laurel Park has a jogging trail, basketball court, picnic facilities, thirteen tennis courts, and two volleyball courts on 25 acres. The Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area consists of more than 1,700 acres in four parks along the waterway. Concessionaires rent canoes, rafts, or kayaks at various points along the river so that water buffs can experience the river's whitewater thrills firsthand. The Lake Allatoona Reservoir, which boasts a 330-acre lake and 124 land-acres, is ideal for fishing, boating, swimming, camping, hiking, and picnicking. At the town of Acworth, Acworth Beach and Lake Acworth offer swimming, fishing, picnicking, and sunbathing.

Shopping and Dining

Cobb County offers shoppers a variety of options from the corner store to huge regional shopping malls like Cumberland Mall and Town Center at Cobb, each with more than one million square feet. Opened in 1973 as the area's first enclosed mall, Cumberland Mall has a projected $65 million in improvements scheduled to conclude in 2006. Marietta is the home of Providence Square, which is anchored by Home Depot, Upton's, and Parkaire Landing. Quaint shops surrounding Marietta Square offer antiques, art, fine china, jewelry, clothing, and novelty items. Other shopping areas include Marietta Trade Center, Town and Country Shopping Center, Merchants Walk, Cobb Place, Belmont Hills Shopping Center, and Akers Mill Shopping Center. The Church Street Market provides foods native to the area along with quaint home and garden products.

Southern cuisine, featuring such treats as baked squash casserole or turnip greens, or palate-tempting fare served in classic plantation style, makes for memorable dining experiences. A variety of ethnic cuisines, including Japanese, Mexican, Italian, Chinese, and standard American and continental fare are available at the more than 200 dining rooms, outdoor cafes, and casual eateries which proliferate throughout the area.

Visitor Information: Cobb County Convention & Visitors Bureau, One Galleria Pkwy., Atlanta, GA 30339; telephone (800)451-3480; fax (678)303-2625; email [email protected] Marietta Welcome Center, 4 Depot St. NE, Marietta, GA 30060; telephone (770)429-1115

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Marietta: History

Europeans Take Over Indian Lands

For many years, Cobb County was the home of the Creek tribe, descendants of the Mississippian tribes that inhabited the northwest section of Georgia from approximately 800 A.D. The Creeks were driven south of the Chattahoochee River by the Cherokees in the early 1800s. Cobb County was still part of the Cherokee Indian Territory when Marietta's earliest European settlers came. They began to arrive in the early 1830s from other parts of Georgia, when they won land lotteries used to allocate the Indian lands. Other early migrants, most of English and Scotch-Irish descent, traveled south to Georgia through the mid-Atlantic states. The Cherokee land had been divided into 40-acre gold and 160-acre farm tracts with most of Cobb County originally settled by gold-seekers and people looking for good farmland. Despite several treaties to protect the rights of the Cherokees, in 1835 these Native Americans were forced to move west, and the whites moved in for good. Although some of the Native Americans left voluntarily, more than 17,000 were relocated by the federal government to Oklahoma by way of the infamous Trail of Tears. Traces of its Native American heritage remain in Cobb County in place names such as Sweetwater, Allatoona, and Kennesaw. Some of the Indian trails were widened to accommodate wagons, which in time brought in more settlers and launched trade in the county.

Early History of Marietta

By 1833, nearly 100 people had settled in the area of Marietta, chosen as a town site in part because of the springs located near the present town square. The county was named in honor of Judge Thomas Willis Cobb, Georgia Congressman, U.S. Senator, and later a judge of the Ocmulgee Circuit of the Superior Court and the city for his wife. Marietta's first courthouse, a single room log cabin, was built in 1834. By the mid 1830s, several river ferries began operating to transport people, wagons, and livestock across the Chattahoochee.

In the mid-1840s, Marietta had more than 1,500 residents. By the next decade, it was a popular resort town for people from "the low country," who were attracted in part by the mild climate and the alleged therapeutic powers of local spring water. The state-owned Western & Atlantic Railroad began runs in 1845 and was completed in May 1850, providing access to a ready market for farmers and manufacturers and reducing the costs of conveying merchandise. Cities and towns sprang up along major rail lines running through Cobb County. In 1852 Marietta's formal incorporation took place. From 1850 to 1861, Marietta was considered a carefree town and was once described as "the fastest town in Georgia." During this period, businesses included tailor shops, warehouses, grocery stores, general stores, carriage and wagon shops, a tin and gunsmith shop, a bakery, professional services, and other small businesses.

Civil War Brings Destruction

On April 11, 1862, the first disruptive effects of the Civil War were felt by the city's people when a group of 22 undercover Union agents arrived. After staying overnight at Kennesaw House, a former hotel, which still stands west of the town square, the agents boarded the W & A Railroad northbound train at the Marietta Station. At Big Shanty (now Kennesaw), the Union spies took control of the train. They were later caught by "Andrew's Raiders" after a now-famous locomotive chase with the backward pursuing "The Texas" overtaking "The General" near Ringgold, Georgia. The hard times of the War Between the States culminated with the Union occupation of the city on July 3, 1864, following battles around Kennesaw Mountain. During that time, the courthouse and all county records were destroyed when General Sherman's troops burned every public building on Marietta's town square.

Prosperity Slowly Returns in Post-War Period

After the Civil War, recovery was slow for Marietta as for the rest of the South. Over time, however, the city began to prosper as new businesses moved in, and an 1860s account reveals that the city once again was beginning to attract visitors. In the 1870s, a new jail and courthouse were built, and summer tourists were honored at a reception in the city square. County finances gradually were improving, but the blackened ruin of the county courthouse remained as a reminder of the "War of Northern Aggression," as it was termed in the South, until the construction of a new building began in 1872. Industrialization came to the Marietta area in the late nineteenth century, gradually overtaking agriculture as the major factor in the county's economy over the next half century. The Marietta Bank (now called First National Bank of Cobb County) opened in 1888, and a paper mill, two chair and two marble companies, a textile mill, and a machine works sparked the economic recovery. By 1899, street lights illuminated the town, a local telephone company was operating, and there was a railroad depot in downtown Marietta. Still, the rural parts of Cobb County endured low cotton prices for years. In 1900 as many as 56 percent of the county's farmers paid rent as tenants with typical fees amounting to a fourth of their cotton crop along with a third of their corn. By 1905, an electric railway operated between Marietta and Atlanta, spawning residential development as Cobb County residents commuted to jobs in Atlanta.

Schools were established early in Marietta, and the city set up its independent school system in 1892. In 1919 the city organized the first Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) in the county. (In fact, The National PTA was founded in Washington, D.C. by Alice McLellan Birney (18581907), a former Marietta resident.)

Early construction of highways was concentrated in Marietta from 1917 to 1921, and the county began a federally-subsidized road program at that same time. Old Highway 41 was paved in 1926, allowing ready access between Marietta and Atlanta and encouraging trade.

Aircraft Industry Aids Recovery

Cobb County's economy remained dependent on agriculture until 1940 when manufactured goods produced amounted to twice the value of agricultural products. Hard times took over during the Great Depression of the 1930s, and World War II played a part in the recovery. In 1941, Rickenbacker Field (now Dobbins Air Force Base) was built south of Marietta along with the adjoining 200-acre Bell Aircraft Plant. During World War II, B-29s were produced at the plant and employment reached 28,000 people. With the local population able to supply only a small part of the work force for the large plant, newcomers poured in, necessitating the construction of new housing projects. About that time a 45-acre complex was built and named Larry Bell Park, in honor of the President of Bell Aircraft Corporation. The plant closed in 1946, but reopened in 1951 as the Lockheed-Georgia Company. Some of the aircraft produced there include B-47s, C-130s, C-141s, C-5As, C-5Bs, and the Jetstar. Employment at the plant of the Bell Aircraft Corporation, Georgia's largest employer at that time, reached more than 31,000 people by the 1960s.

Businesses and the real estate industry burgeoned when thousands of people moved to Cobb County and the Greater Atlanta area. Construction of Interstate 75 through the county in the 1950s increased the impact of tourism, and brought outside investments for industry and housing. During the following years major developments included the opening of the first major office parks in the 1960s, the opening of Cumberland Mall in 1973, the opening of the first major hotels and shopping malls and the establishment of the Cobb Convention and Visitors Bureau in the 1980s, and the construction of the $47 million Galleria Convention Centre in 1992. With the area's economic growth showing no signs of slowing, by mid-2003 more than 27,000 businesses were licensed in Cobb County.

Cobb County, of which Marietta is the county seat, is Georgia's third largest county and growing. The city's and county's station as a commercial hub of north Georgia, blended with its "old South" charm and close proximity to Atlanta, combine to make it one of the fastest-growing counties in the country.

Historical Information: Cobb County Public Library, 266 Roswell St., Marietta, GA 30060; telephone (770)528-2320

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Marietta: Economy

Major Industries and Commercial Activity

Cobb County has a diverse business base that encompasses manufacturing and distribution, administrative headquarters operations, service industries, and retailers. The booming service economy and the large migration of Northern companies into the South have formed a new class of entrepreneurs. Marietta and Cobb County compete with cities such as Nashville, Birmingham, Charlotte, Dallas, and Fairfax, Virginia, for the attention of relocating businesses. Cobb County has the advantages of relatively low property taxes, as well as the diversity and availability of site and buildings. Marietta offers strong advantages in terms of low costs for building and leasing, as well as a moderate cost of living.

In the early 1990s when Lockheed, the area's largest employer, cut its work force, it didn't seem to faze the community, though in early 2005 more layoffs are predicted due to the proposed federal budget. The mix of new and diverse industries have made the area virtually recession-proof. Besides Lockheed Martin Aeronautical Systems, other large-scale employers in Cobb County include the Cobb County Public Schools, WellStar Health System, The Home Depot, Cobb County Government, and Publix.

Cobb County is the second most popular visitor destination in Georgia. More than 4 million visitors a year experience the area's attractions and stay in its hotels. Tourism was a $1.2 billion industry in 2001. While tourism increased 1.3 percent from the previous year, figures were still slightly impacted by the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Tourism in the area is still experiencing major growth, and is responsible for nearly 40,000 direct and indirect jobs in the county.

Items and goods produced: computer software and hardware, aerospace equipment, aircraft parts, medical devices, printing, construction products, chemicals, plastics, paper products, foodstuffs, telecommunications equipment

Incentive ProgramsNew and Existing Companies

Local programs

The Cobb Chamber of Commerce works to maintain a healthy economy by bringing business and industry to the area and helping established firms grow. Through six Area Councils in the Cumberland, East Cobb, Marietta, North Cobb, Smyrna, and South Cobb areas, the Cobb Chamber unifies and advocates for Cobb's business community. Each council is represented on the Cobb Chamber Board of Directors and promotes grassroots actions. The Cobb Chamber handles administration for the Development Authority of Cobb County and the Cumberland Community Improvement District, which supports the Cumberland Transportation Network.

State programs

Georgia has business-friendly tax laws; the state does not use the unitary tax method, but instead taxes businesses only on income apportioned to Georgia. In addition, the state sales tax rate has risen only one percentage point since 1951. Attractive inventory tax exemptions are available in most metropolitan Atlanta counties, and sales and property tax exemptions are available for certain pollution control equipment used in production. Companies can apply for a permit from the Georgia Environmental Protection Division which can result in their obtaining their federal permit as well, via a single application.

Job training programs

The Georgia Department of Technical and Adult Education administers the Georgia Quick Start program, a three-way partnership of Quick Start, one of the state's technical institutions, and a company wishing to start up business in Georgia. By developing and implementing high quality, customized training programs and materials, Quick Start assists the company in obtaining a trained work force ready to begin as soon as the company opens for business.

Development Projects

In late 2004, a new Chattahoochee Tunnel and R.L. Sutton Water Reclamation Facility was put into operation. Begun in 2000, the $113.6 million wastewater project included a 9.5 mile long tunnel and 40-million-gallon-a-day wastewater treatment facility. The new facility is expected to meet the needs of the county through the year 2050.

Also in late 2004, the county purchased the vacant Westpark Plaza shopping center on Whitlock Avenue for $2.8 million. Plans to begin renovation were underway, with an expected finish time of spring 2005; county offices will inhabit the new space. Groundbreaking took place in October 2004 on a new regional library in Marietta's historic Mableton area. As the third of five new library facilities in the county, the $3.7 million building is expected to be completed by early 2006.

Economic Development Information: Cobb Chamber of Commerce, PO Box 671868, Marietta, GA 30006-0032; telephone (770)980-2000

Commercial Shipping

Norfolk Southern and CSX offer freight rail service at Marietta, and piggyback service at Atlanta, 18 miles away. For motor freight, Marietta and Cobb County are part of the Atlanta Commercial Zone, with 11 interstate and 51 inter/intrastate terminals, and 23 local terminals. General aviation aircraft are served by McCollum Field, which can handle operations of small jets and other craft weighing less than 33,000 pounds. The airport has a 4,600-foot bituminous runway and offers aircraft tiedown, airframe and power plant repair, a hangar, and lighted runway.

Labor Force and Employment Outlook

Low unemployment levels and some of the lowest property tax levels in metro Atlanta continue to assist Marietta and Cobb County in their attractiveness to businesses and residents. Cobb County has metamorphosed from a sleepy bedroom community into the region's driving economic force. Good planning has built a solid infrastructure; Cobb Community Transit operates a bus system and major road improvements are underway. Cobb County is well positioned for further growth and economic expansion.

The following is a summary of data regarding Cobb County's labor force as of 2003.

Size of labor force: 355,501

Number of workers employed in . . .

agriculture and mining: 357

construction: 22,971

manufacturing: 33,496

wholesale and retail trade: 60,726

transportation and public utilities: 23,442

information: 16,380

finance, insurance, and real estate: 27,472

services: 60,123

education, health, and social services: 54,720

arts, entertainment, leisure, and accommodation: 21,128

government: 14,316

Average hourly earnings of production workers employed in manufacturing: $14 (2003 statewide average)

Unemployment rate: 4.2% (December 2004)

Largest employers Number of employees
Cobb County Public Schools 13,799
WellStar Health System 9,900
Lockheed Martin Aeronautical 7,800
The Home Depot, Inc. 6,686
Cobb County Government 5,001
Six Flags Atlanta Properties 2,765
Publix Super Markets 2,600
Naval Air Station-Atlanta 2,500
IBM Corporation 1,400

Cost of Living

The following is a summary of data regarding several key cost of living factors for the Marietta area.

2004 (3rd Quarter) ACCRA Average House Price: $209,258

2004 (3rd Quarter) ACCRA Cost of Living Index: 97.0 (U.S. average = 100.0)

State income tax rate: Ranges from 1.0% to 6.0%

State sales tax rate: 4.0% (food and prescription drugs are exempt)

Local income tax rate: None

Local sales tax rate: 1.0%

Property tax rate: $11.99 per $1000 of fair market value (2003)

Economic Information: Cobb Chamber of Commerce, PO Box 671868, Marietta, GA 30006; telephone (770)980-2000; fax (770) 980-9510; email [email protected]

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Marietta: Education and Research

Elementary and Secondary Schools

Marietta's city school system is governed by a seven-member elected Board of Education. Four of its 10 schools have been named Georgia Schools of Excellence along with one National School of Excellence, and in 2003 the system ranked in the top 15 percent of nationwide school systems. In 2004 the combined average of SAT scores exceeded the national average. Marietta offers a comprehensive program for exceptional and gifted children in elementary, middle, and high school. The system offers special education programs, reading recovery classes, and a program called Project Key aimed at pre-school handicapped children. In the fall of 2005 the Marietta Center for Advanced Academics, the city's first magnet school, is scheduled to open and will enroll 360 third to fifth grade students via application only.

In 2003, Cobb County taxpayers extended a "special purpose" sales tax of $637 million for new school construction and technology programs. Of that total, $76 million was allocated for technology and curriculum programs. The need for additional classrooms due to the expanding population is addressed as $205 million of the tax is directed to the building of nine new schools within the county (four elementary, three middle, and two high schools).

The following is a summary of data regarding Marietta's public schools as of the 20032004 school year.

Total enrollment: 7,558

Number of facilities

elementary schools: 7

junior high/middle schools: 2

senior high schools: 1

other: 1 alternative school

Student/teacher ratio: 12:1

Teacher salaries

minimum: $33,455

maximum: $70,568

Funding per pupil: $7,710

Several private schools, both church-affiliated and nonsectarian, are located in the area.

Public Schools Information: Marietta City Schools, 250 Howard St., Marietta, GA 30060; telephone (770)422-3500; fax (770)425-4095

Colleges and Universities

Marietta is the home of two senior colleges of the University System of Georgia. Kennesaw State University, with about 18,000 students, offers a broad selection of undergraduate majors as well as graduate programs in business administration and education. Southern Polytechnic State University, founded in 1948 and located within the city, offers its nearly 4,000 students associate degree transfer programs and 23 undergraduate majors in its bachelor degree programs including ten areas of engineering technology and related fields, as well as masters programs in Technology Management and Technical Communication.

The city has two post-secondary institutions. Chattahoochee Technical College offers its 5,000-plus students vocational-technical and supplementary education and industrial short-term training. The school offers four associate of applied technology degree programs and certificate programs in architectural drafting technology and dental assisting. Diploma programs are available in seventeen other fields. The North Metro Technical College offers the associate of applied science degree in business, electronics, and secretarial science. Diploma programs include accounting, information & office technology, electronics and telecommunications. Continuing education programs are also offered, as are customized industry-specific short term courses. Life University offers bachelor's degrees in business administration, nutrition for the chiropractic sciences, and pre-professional education for advanced careers in health care and business. Finally, the private Shorter College has six different schools focused on a liberal arts curriculum.

Libraries and Research Centers

The Cobb County Public Library System, one of the largest in the state, is comprised of a 64,000-square-foot main library in Marietta and 16 branches with another expected to open in early 2006. The system has almost 680,000 volumes, 1,298 periodical subscriptions, almost 500 microfiches, nearly 8,000 audio and videotapes, 3,200 music CDs, a CD-ROM network, and Internet access. A number of databases are also available free of charge on the library's website. The library is also home to a special historical collection in its Georgia Room containing more than 12,000 items.

Special libraries in Marietta include the Genealogical Center Library, which lends books to the public by mail for a fee (write to them at PO Box 1343, Marietta GA 30007-1343); Lockheed's comprehensive Technical Information Center; and Southern Polytechnic State University's science and engineering library. Three research centers are located in Marietta, including the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' South Atlantic Division Laboratory, which tests soil and water quality among other activities.

Public Library Information: Cobb County Public Library System, 266 Roswell St., Marietta, GA 30060-2004; telephone (770)528-2320; email [email protected]

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Marietta: Population Profile

Metropolitan Area Residents

1980: 2,233,000

1990: 2,969,500

2000: 4,112,198

Percent change, 19902000: 39.0%

U.S. rank in 1980: 16th

U.S. rank in 1990: 12th

U.S. rank in 2000: 11th

City Residents

1980: 30,829

1990: 44,129

2000: 58,748 (of which, 22,824 were male and 22,766 were female)

2003 estimate: 61,282

Percent change, 19902000: 33.1%

U.S. rank in 1990: 582nd (State rank: 13th)

U.S. rank in 2000: 557th (State rank: 13th)

Density: 2,684.1 people per square mile (in 2000, based on 2000 land area)

Racial and ethnic characteristics (2000)

White: 33,185

Black or African American: 17,330

American Indian and Alaska Native: 188

Asian: 1,744

Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander: 51

Hispanic or Latino (may be of any race): 9,947

Other: 4,694

Percent of residents born in state: 35.4% (2000)

Age characteristics (2000)

Population under 5 years old: 4,655

Population 5 to 9 years old: 3,776

Population 10 to 14 years old: 3,023

Population 15 to 19 years old: 3,391

Population 20 to 24 years old: 6,615

Population 25 to 34 years old: 14,134

Population 35 to 44 years old: 9,031

Population 45 to 54 years old: 6,021

Population 55 to 59 years old: 1,932

Population 60 to 64 years old: 1,276

Population 65 to 74 years old: 2,174

Population 75 to 84 years old: 1,929

Population 85 years and older: 791

Median age: 30.0 years

Births (2003, in Cobb County)

Total number: 10,539

Deaths (2003, in Cobb County)

Total number: 3,289 (of which, 51 were infants under the age of 1 year)

Money income (1999)

Per capita income: $23,409

Median household income: $40,645

Total households: 23,945

Number of households with income of . . .

less than $10,000: 2,068

$10,000 to $14,999: 1,209

$15,000 to $24,999: 3,165

$25,000 to $34,999: 3,573

$35,000 to $49,999: 4,579

$50,000 to $74,999: 4,504

$75,000 to $99,999: 2,081

$100,000 to $149,999: 1,711

$150,000 to $199,999: 493

$200,000 or more: 562

Percent of families below poverty level: 11.5% (41.3% of which were female householder families with related children under 5 years)

2002 FBI Crime Index Total: Not reported

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Marietta: Introduction
Marietta: Geography and Climate
Marietta: History
Marietta: Population Profile
Marietta: Municipal Government
Marietta: Economy
Marietta: Education and Research
Marietta: Health Care
Marietta: Recreation
Marietta: Convention Facilities
Marietta: Transportation
Marietta: Communications

The City in Brief

Founded: 1834 (incorporated 1852)

Head Official: Mayor Bill Dunaway (R) (since 2002)

City Population

1980: 30,829

1990: 44,129

2000: 58,748

2003 estimate: 61,282

Percent change, 19902000: 33.1%

U.S. rank in 1990: 582nd (State rank: 13th)

U.S. rank in 2000: 557th (State rank: 13th)

Metropolitan Area Population

1980: 2,233,000

1990: 2,959,500

2000: 4,112,198

Percent change, 19902000: 39.0%

U.S. rank in 1980: 16th

U.S. rank in 1990: 12th

U.S. rank in 2000: 11th

Area: 21.95 square miles (2000)

Elevation: 1,128 feet above sea level

Average Annual Temperature: 61.2° F

Average Annual Precipitation: 48.61 inches

Major Economic Sectors: wholesale and retail trade, services, government

Unemployment rate: 4.2% (December 2004)

Per Capita Income: $23,409 (1999)

2002 FBI Crime Index Total: not reported

Major Colleges and Universities: Kennesaw State University, Southern Polytechnic State University

Daily Newspaper: Marietta Daily Journal

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Marietta: Introduction

Marietta, located in Cobb County, approximately 20 miles from Atlanta, is one of the booming exurban job centers growing up around the country. Cobb County likes to market the area's recreational attractions by referring to itself as "the fun side of Atlanta," and Mariettans spend hundreds of thousands of dollars sowing seeds and planting trees and shrubs to promote beautification throughout the city. The town square, bleached-white gazebos, and the antebellum mansions give Marietta the misty feeling of the Old South. Yet the Wall Street Journal describes the city as "the intersection of great economic, social and geographic changes." The city and surrounding county were totally transformed with office buildings, warehouses, light manufacturing factories, and retail shops. Cobb County invested more in infrastructure, including water, sewer, road, and other utilities between 1970 and 1990 than any other county in Georgia, and during that period more houses were built in the county than anywhere else in the state. The influx of new residents has even resulted in the popular use of the new pronunciation of the city's name, MARRY-etta, rather than the traditional May-RETT-a. In 2002 an analysis produced by the Georgia Municipal Organization and a local magazine considered such things as fiscal management, public safety, infrastructure, citizen participation, cultural activities, and community partnerships, and concluded that Marietta was a "City of Excellence."

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Marietta: Communications

Newspapers and Magazines

Marietta's daily newspapers are the Marietta Daily Journal and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, both published in Atlanta. East Cobber and Cobb Extra are published weekly. Several magazines are published in Marietta, including The Game & Fish Magazine, Georgia Sportsman, and North American Whitetail Magazine.

Television and Radio

Cobb County has access to eight television stations, all but one from Atlanta. There are two local radio stations.

Media Information: Marietta Daily Journal, 580 Fairground St. SE, Marietta, GA 30060; telephone (770) 428-9411. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 72 Marietta St. NW, Atlanta, GA 30303

Marietta Online

City of Marietta home page. Available

Cobb Chamber of Commerce. Available

Cobb County Board of Education. Available

Cobb County Convention and Visitors Bureau. Available

Cobb County Public Library. Available

Marietta City Schools. Available

Marietta Daily Journal. Available

Marietta Square (downtown visitor information). Available

Selected Bibliography

Lassiter, Patrice Shelton, Generations of Black Life in Kennesaw & Marietta, Georgia (Charleston, S.C.: Arcadia Pub., c1999)

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MARIETTA, the first settlement made under the provisions of the Ordinance of 1787, was settled on 7 April 1788, when forty-eight men under the leadership of General Rufus Putnam of the Ohio Company of associates concluded their journey from Massachusetts to the mouth of the Muskingum River in the present state of Ohio. It was at first named Adelphia, but on 2 July 1788, in honor of Queen Marie Antoinette of France, the name was changed to Marietta. The machinery of government in the Northwest Territory first functioned here, when General Arthur St. Clair, governor of the territory, arrived on 9 July 1788.


Reginald Horsman. The Frontier in the Formative Years, 17831815. New York: Rinehart and Winston, 1970.

T. N.Hoover/a. r.

See alsoMiami Purchase ; Northwest Territory ; Ordinances of 1784, 1785, and 1787 .

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Marietta: Convention Facilities

Cobb County's Galleria Centre provides 320,000 square feet of meeting and exhibit space. The $40 million facility offers a 144,000-square-foot exhibit/arena space; a 25,000-square-foot ballroom; nearly 24,000 square feet of registration/prefunction space, and 20 meeting rooms ranging from 528 to 1,750 square feet. Connected to the center is the Renaissance Waverly Hotel with 27 meeting room and 60,000 square feet of meeting space and 521 deluxe hotel suites. The county offers more than 70 hotels/motels with more than 12,000 sleeping rooms in a variety of price ranges. Unique off-site meeting spots include a Victorian-styled park, an 1830's historic home/museum, a Victorian country inn, an amusement park, and the Cobb County Civic Center.

Within the city itself is the Marietta Conference Center & Resort, which has 20,000 square feet of meeting space and features 17 meeting rooms that can accommodate up to as many as 500 people.

Convention Information: Cobb County Convention & Visitors Bureau, One Galleria Pkwy., Atlanta, GA 30339; telephone (800)451-3480; fax (678)303-2625; email [email protected]