Roswell is a city in northern Fulton County, Georgia, United States. It is an affluent northern suburb of the state capital of Atlanta. Roswell is Georgia's eighth largest city with a population of 88,346 per the 2010 United States Census.
HistoryRoswell King passed through the area of what is now Roswell and observed the great potential for building a cotton mill along Vickery Creek. Since the land nearby was also good for plantations, his idea was to put cotton processing near cotton production.
Toward the middle of the 1830s, King returned to build a mill that would soon become the largest in North Georgia – Roswell Mill. He brought with him 36 African slaves from his own coastal plantation, plus another 42 skilled carpenter slaves bought in Savannah to build the mills. The slaves built the mills, infrastructure, houses, mill worker apartments, and supporting buildings for the new town. The Africans brought their unique Geechee culture, language, and religious traditions from the coast to north Georgia.
Barrington Hall (the home of Barrington King), Smith Plantation (the home of Archibald Smith) and Bulloch Hall (The childhood home of President Theodore Roosevelt's mother – Mittie Bulloch) have been preserved and restored. They are now open to the public. According to the 1850 Slave Schedules, these three "founding families", together with the next three largest planters, held 192 slaves, 51% of the total 378 slaves held in Roswell District. Archibald Smith had a 300-acre (1.2 km2) cotton plantation. According to the 1850 Census, Barrington King held 70 slaves. Half of these slaves were under the age of 10. These slaves worked in Barrington's household. Barrington King "leased" or "rented" some of his adult male slaves to the Roswell Manufacturing Company but they did not work around the mill machinery.
Cobb County when first settled, and the county seat of Marietta was a four-hour (one-way) horseback ride to the west. Since Roswell residents desired a local government, they submitted a city charter for incorporation to the Georgia General Assembly. The charter was approved on February 16, 1854.
By the time of the Civil War, the cotton mills employed more than 400 people, mostly women. Given settlement patterns in the Piedmont, they were likely of Scots-Irish descent. As the mill increased in production, so did the number of people living in the area.
American Civil War, the city was captured by Union forces under the leadership of General Kenner Garrard. Under orders of General Sherman, Garrard shipped the mill workers north to prevent them from returning to work if the mills were rebuilt. This was a common tactic of Sherman to economically disrupt the South. The mill was burned, but the houses were left standing. The ruins of the mill and the 30-foot (9.1 m) dam that was built for power still remain. Most of the town's property was confiscated by Union forces. The leading families had left the town to go to safer places well before the Federal invasion, and arranged for their slaves to be taken away from advancing Federal troops, as was often the practice. Some slaves may have escaped to Union lines.
After the war, Barrington King rebuilt the mills and resumed production. While many freedmen stayed in the area to work as paid labor on plantations or in town, others migrated to Fulton County and Atlanta for new opportunities. The South suffered an agricultural depression resulting from the effects of the war and labor changes.
According to the census, the population of Cobb County decreased slightly from 14,242 in 1860, to 13,814 in 1870. The proportion of African-Americans decreased more, from 27% to 23%. During those years, nearby Fulton County more than doubled in population, from 14,427 to 33,336. The effects of dramatic African-American migration can be seen by the increase in Fulton County from 20.5% slave in 1860 to 45.7% colored (Black) in 1870.
At the end of 1931, the United States was in the midst of the Great Depression. The difficult economic conditions drove Milton County, Roswell's neighboring county to the north (note: much of what is now Roswell was part of Milton county already), to merge in its entirety with Fulton County, Roswell's neighboring county to the south. To facilitate the merger, Roswell was ceded by Cobb County to Fulton. Sections of neighboring Cherokee and Gwinnett counties were also ceded to Fulton at this time to define the expanded and contiguous northern section of Fulton County.
Roswell is now one of the largest cities in the state; its population has increased most steadily in the last 15 years.
Jere Wood, a Republican, has served as mayor of Roswell since 1997.
CNN named Roswell #76 for its list of the Top 100 Places to Live in the US in 2010.
Named One of the Top Three Cities in the Nation to Raise Your Family. Roswell was listed third in the book, Best Places to Raise Your Family, released by Frommer's.
On October 30, 2006, the City of Roswell was named the 18th Safest City in the United States by City Crime Rankings, an annual reference book of crime statistics and rankings published by Morgan Quitno Press. Roswell was selected from 371 cities in the Overall Safest 25 category.
EconomyThe Consulate-General of Honduras in Atlanta is located at Suite 3 in 600 Houze Way in Roswell.
Points of interest
- Archibald Smith Plantation Home
- Andrew Wordes home site
- Bulloch Hall
- Barrington Hall
- Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area
- Chattahoochee Nature Center
- Faces Of War Memorial
- Primrose Cottage
- Teaching Museum North
- Atlanta Rowing Club
- Holly Hill
- Historic Roswell District
Parks and recreationRoswell Recreation and Parks department has 18 parks with 800 acres (3.2 km2) of active and passive parkland and facilities. The goals of the department are to promote a sense of community spirit and athleticism in the youth of Roswell partnering with many local middle and high schools to achieve its goals by lending practice fields and athletic coaches throughout the year.
A branch of the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area, a component of the National Park System, is located in Roswell at Vickery Creek.
Notable festivals and parades
- Roswell Memorial Day Ceremony — the largest Memorial Day Ceremony in Georgia
- Roswell Roots: A Festival of Black History & Culture (February)
- Roswell Criterium Bicycle Race and Historic Roswell Kiwanis Kids Bike Safety Rodeo (May)
- Roswell Magnolia Storytelling Festival (June)
- Riverside Sounds Concert Series (May — October)
- Roswell Youth Day Parade and Festival (October)
- Keep Roswell Beautiful Duck Race (October)
- Roswell Annual Fireworks Extravaganza July 4
Notable persons and groups from RoswellMartha Bulloch Roosevelt, the mother of Theodore Roosevelt (the 26th US President) and grandmother of Eleanor Roosevelt, came from Roswell. Bulloch Hall was her home. Emily Dolvin, the aunt of Jimmy Carter (the 39th U.S. President), lived in Roswell the majority of her life and was the inaugural chairwoman of the Roswell Historical Society. Architect Neel Reid lived in Mimosa Hall and died there in 1926.
Comedian Jeff Foxworthy was a frequent diner at one of Roswell's popular bars, The Southern Skillet, when he lived there off and on in the '90's. Former two-time National League MVP Atlanta Braves Baseball Player Dale Murphy, lived in Roswell in the 1980's. In 2006, Tom Price was re-elected to a second term in the United States House of Representatives to serve as the congressmen from the 6th congressional district of Georgia, the district that encompasses most of Roswell. Natural chef Ford Fry also lives in Roswell.
Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel resides in Roswell as well as former Pittsburgh Steeler and current NBC Sports announcer Jerome Bettis.
Primary and secondary schools
Public schoolsRoswell's local public schools are part of the Fulton County School System.
- Amana Academy (K-8)
- Esther Jackson Elementary School
- Hembree Springs Elementary School
- Mimosa Elementary School
- Mountain Park Elementary School
- Northwood Elementary School
- Roswell North Elementary School
- Sweet Apple Elementary School
- Hillside Elementary School
- River Eves Elementary School
- Crabapple Middle School
- Elkins Pointe Middle School
- Holcomb Bridge Middle School
- Creative Montessori School
- Blessed Trinity Catholic High School
- Chrysalis Experiential Academy
- Cottage School
- Cross of Life Montessori School
- Eaton Academy
- Fellowship Christian Academy
- High Meadows School
- Queen of Angels Catholic School
- Village Montessori
- The Howard School (North Campus)
- St. Francis High School
- Jacob's Ladder Neurodevelopmental School & Therapy Center
Public librariesAtlanta-Fulton Public Library System operates the Roswell Branch.
- City website
- Historic Roswell Convention & Visitors Bureau
- Keep Roswell Beautiful
- Kiwanis Club of Historic Roswell
- History of Roswell, Georgia
- Chattahoochee Nature Center
- Roadside Georgia's list of things to do in Roswell
- State of Georgia website info on Roswell
- Georgiainfo.com maps of Fulton County and surrounding area over the years
- The Roswell Current
- Alpharetta Roswell Revue & News