By Ann Boutwell


Oct. 1, 1924: James Earl Carter, the 39th President of the United States (1977-1981) was born in Plains, Ga. The Jimmy Carter Presidential Museum on Freedom Parkway opened on this date in 1986. After a summer-long,  $10 million redesign and renovation, the museum reopens on Oct. 1, Carter’s 85th birthday.

Oct. 4, 1990: Hotel Nikko opened in Buckhead at the corner of Peachtree and Piedmont roads. The 440-room hotel at 330 Peachtree Road is a joint venture of Japan Air Lines and Prudential Property Co. Hisashi Ito, the hotel’s chief executive, told about 200 people at the opening that the decision to locate in Atlanta was correct because of the future 1994 Super Bowl and 1996 Olympics. Hotel Nikko became the Grand Hyatt Atlanta in 1997.

Oct. 3, 1895: In Philadelphia, the Liberty Bell was removed from Independence Hall and paraded to the Pennsylvania freight station. The next day, the bell was put on a train to Atlanta, accompanied by Philadelphia’s mayor, to be exhibited at the Cotton States and International Exposition held at Piedmont Park.

Oct. 7, 1991: I’ll Fly Away a television show set in fictional Bryland County, Georgia, began a two-year run on NBC. The series, filmed in and around Atlanta, documented the life of white and black families during the Civil Rights era.

Oct. 15, 1870: Atlanta honored the memory of deceased Confederate General Robert E. Lee, who died in Lexington, Va., Oct. 12. The morning procession began on the corner of Marietta and Forsyth streets in front of the Kimball Opera House, which was being used as the State Capitol at the time. Flags flew half-mast and crepe hung over the doors of the commercial buildings. The large crowd proceeded to City Hall Square, where the current Georgia State Capitol stands on Washington Street. The final stop was Atlanta City Cemetery, renamed Oakland in 1872, where the cornerstone of the 65-foot obelisk known as the Confederate Monument was laid.

Oct. 21, 1881: The Atlanta Telephone Exchange (a predecessor of Southern Bell) issued a single page directory of 123 subscribers from its office in the downtown Kimball House. Only 12 were residential subscribers, while the others were businesses and offices of public officials.

Oct. 21, 1963: Atlanta elected its first Jewish mayor, Sam H. Massell, Jr. The 41-year old incumbent vice mayor, a liberal Democrat, defeated Rodney Cook, a 45-year old moderate Republican, 61,558 to 49,455. Massell is now nicknamed the Mayor of Buckhead and is president of the Buckhead Coalition.

Oct. 25, 1977: England’s Prince Charles of Wales and Earl of Chester attended a VIP party at the Atlanta Historical Society’s Swan House.

Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.