In sharing history of road names, I recently mentioned that Roberts Drive is named for Roswell Railroad engineer Isaac Roberts, better known as Ike. Roberts was born in Gaston County, North Carolina in 1853. He began working for the Atlanta and Charlotte Air Line Railroad in 1872.  The railr…

Get ready to celebrate fall with Apple Cider Days, presented by Dunwoody Preservation Trust.  Apple Cider Days will take place Nov. 9-10, with fun activities and events for the whole family, along with a dash of history.   

Early road names were often established based on where you would end up if you kept traveling down that road. Chamblee Dunwoody Road is a good example. On that road, you are headed toward Chamblee or toward Dunwoody. 

In May of this year, I wrote about Elizabeth Davis, long-time principal of Dunwoody School and co-author of “The Story of Dunwoody,” along with Ethel Spruill. Elizabeth and Manget Davis lived at 5300 Chamblee Dunwoody Road, just across the street from Dunwoody School where the Spruill Center…

Early schoolteachers in Georgia often received their training at what was known as normal school. Normal schools were established in Georgia toward the end of the 19th century to prepare teachers to teach elementary aged students. It was usually a two-year program and the term “normal” refer…

Ken Anderson, who has shared so much Dunwoody history with me through the years, told me the Martin family lived where Dunwoody High School is today. His recollection was from the 1940s and 1950s. I wanted to find out more about this family and their farm. 

An opportunity to see how pioneers managed their home and kitchen garden is coming up at Donaldson-Bannister Farm on Saturday, September 21. The next History Alive event, “Pioneer Life 101,” will take place from 9:30 a.m. until 11 a.m. Katie Hendrickson will share her knowledge of a homestea…

Stephen Streett and Doug Allen started Misty Creek Community Church in April of this year.  The church first met in a Sandy Springs home, but has held its last nine services in the old stone Providence Church building, at the corner of Glenridge Drive and Mount Vernon Highway.  

Last week’s Past Tense shared the history of Lawson General Hospital, the World War II hospital in Chamblee. Clint Daniel and Carlton Renfroe, who grew up nearby, shared with me what they remember about Lawson.  

The classic movie “The Best Years of Our Lives” tells the story of three World War II soldiers returning to their hometown after the war ends. One of the soldiers was played by Harold Russell, a World War II veteran who lost both hands in a training accident and ended up at Lawson General Ho…

Silk peau de soie, lace, bias cut china silk chevrons, ruffles, leaf detail, hand-beaded glass seed beads, teardrop-shaped medallions, hand-embroidered satin stitched flowers. These are just a few of the embellishments seen on examples of women’s clothing and accessories at the Silk & St…

When Lois Pattillo purchased Donaldson-Bannister Farm, the property was 26 acres and included the house that still stands at the corner of Chamblee Dunwoody Road and Vermack Road. The land extended along Vermack Road past what is now Vermack Ridge and Vermack Swim and Tennis. One of the chan…

If you enjoy seeing the historic 1906 Cheek/Spruill Farmhouse at the corner of Mount Vernon Road and Chamblee Dunwoody Road, consider the efforts that went into saving it from demolition. 

On July 20th, Dunwoody Preservation Trust featured Vietnam veteran Jim Torbert as part of its History Alive series.  

July 20th will mark the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing with astronauts Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Buzz Aldrin. As Armstrong took his first step on the moon and said the words, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind,” those who watched remember whe…

As the anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing approaches, please share your memories of where you were and what you remember about that day. Do you recall watching the event on television? Which news anchor do you remember reporting on the event? Was anything else special happening in you…

I’m always curious about the origin of street names, including Lisa Lane in Dunwoody. I had heard a story that the road was named for two sisters in the Kirby family — Lisa and Lane. Now I have confirmation of that story from Lane herself, except her name is spelled Laine. Laine Kirby Wood a…

June 15th was a beautiful day for a family reunion at Donaldson-Bannister Farm. Around 90 descendants of William J. Donaldson came to the Dunwoody farm for the reunion, traveling from Georgia, Texas, Alabama and South Carolina. Some were meeting cousins for the very first time. 

James O. Wilson, who went by Ollie, was born in Chamblee in 1896. He registered for the draft on June 5, 1917 at the A-10 precinct in Atlanta. Three months later, he married Elizabeth Delong of Dunwoody and in July of 1918 he was inducted into the military. Wilson began his training at Chamb…

Brad Phillips has lived in the Roberts Drive area, north of Spalding Drive, since he moved here with his family in 1971. He remembers the old home and the well that once sat where Dunwoody Springs Elementary School is located. It was known as Obediah’s Plantation, because the original owners…

Cascading roses on the arbor at Donaldson-Bannister Farm, a $150,000 endowment for education programs and future gardens at the farm. These are the legacies that Dr. Adrian Gendell Bonser left for the community of Dunwoody. 

The historic summer home that was the inspiration for the name of Happy Hollow Road and which was once known as Happy Hollow is available for purchase. The Cassidy/Lamb Home, circa 1930, at 2579 W. Fontainebleau Court, a cul-de-sac off Happy Hollow Road, has been the home of Brenda and Ken L…

Several major events occurred in the U.S. in the year 1969. That was the year of the Apollo 11 moon landing and walk. It was also the year of Woodstock and the first Boeing 747 flight. Richard Nixon was president, and the Vietnam War continued.  

About three months ago, I wrote about the D-Day Squadron and their plans to return to Normandy for the 75th anniversary of D-Day. A group of pilots will fly to Normandy in restored Douglas Aircraft C-47s. Veteran Daniel McBride, a paratrooper with the 101st Airborne who will be returning to …

While looking through some old issues of the Dunwoody Crier, I discovered an interview with Elizabeth Davis. She was principal of Dunwoody Elementary School from 1937 until 1962. The school was located where the Dunwoody Library and Spruill Center for the Arts are today, so Mrs. Davis had a …

There was once a school at the intersection of Jett Ferry Road and Spalding Drive. It sat up on a hill and was known as Chestnut Ridge School. This Chestnut school is spelled with a “t,”unlike Chesnut Elementary on North Peachtree Road. That was all the history I had about the school until r…

Beautiful hardwoods, plants and animals, trails and hikes, Wildcat Creek, children’s programs are just a few of the things you might enjoy about Dunwoody Nature Center. But do you know the history behind how it began? Last month’s Past Tense looked at the property up until the year 1974. Thi…

In about four months, June 6th will mark the 75th anniversary of D-Day. The D-Day Squadron has been preparing for months to commemorate the day by returning to Normandy with a fleet of more than 20 restored Douglas Aircraft Company C-47s. D-Day Squadron was created by the non-profit Tunison …

In November, I had the honor of meeting 92-year-old World War II veteran George Grant. Richard Adams, born along what is now Dunwoody Club Drive in 1933, introduced me to his friend George Grant of Hollywood, Ga. Grant shared his experiences in Italy during the final months of the war.

The first moving pictures were shown in Atlanta at the Cotton States and International Exposition of Georgia, held in 1895 at Piedmont Park. A movie theater was constructed along the midway. The opportunity to look at moving pictures wasn’t very popular at the Exposition and therefore the tw…

John Cowart has developed residential and commercial properties across Atlanta, including Dunwoody neighborhoods Redfield and Brooke Farm. He also owned and developed land along Ashford Dunwoody Road north of Valley View Road. Forty years ago, he purchased 80 acres along Spalding Drive and d…

The Donaldson-Bannister Farm played a central role in the formation of the city of Dunwoody. The circa 1870 home had several owners through the years, but this part of the history begins with Linda and David Chesnut, who bought the property in 1974 from developer Jim Cowart, saving it from d…

Mr. and Mrs. William H. Harrell of Terry, Miss., had nine children. The four oldest sons were Redus born in 1917, Jack born in 1919, Charles born in 1923, and James born in 1925. In the late 1930s, in the middle of the Great Depression and as the possibility of the United States entering Wor…

Spanish Influenza spread around the world in the fall of 1918, including Chamblee’s World War I encampment, Camp Gordon. World War I training camps established around the U. S., which held thousands of men in close quarters were hit particularly hard. On September 29, 1918 The Atlanta Consti…

Dunwoody Preservation Trust makes it its mission to preserve the history and heritage of Dunwoody and to share this history with the community. Apple Cider Days events of October provide opportunities to learn history, as well as opportunities to share and preserve your own history.

Fred Donaldson remembers that after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, he and other young men gathered at Nash’s Store in Dunwoody to talk about what had happened. In June of 1942 at the age of 16, he enlisted and began a journey that would take him across the United States and across the world.

Fred Donaldson was born at home in September of 1925, in the same home where his six siblings were born, where his father and his siblings were born, and in the house that his grandfather William J. Donaldson built for he and wife Martha (Millie) Adams Donaldson. It is the house that is now …

In 1884, the Roswell Railroad was making a round trip from Chamblee through Dunwoody to Roswell twice a day and a subdivision was planned near the Dunwoody Depot along the railroad tracks. The rows of houses on either side of Chamblee Dunwoody Road never happened, but the railroad was the fo…

Men between the ages of 21 and 31 across the United States registered at their local draft board on June 5, 1917 and those who turned 21 after the first draft registered on June 5, 1918. Mabry Lunceford, a farmer from Camp Hill, Ala., turned 21 Dec. 8, 1917.

This week’s Past Tense focuses on two Camp Gordon soldiers, whose descendants have shared their photographs and history with me, Julius Lombardi of New York City and Edward Mauney of Blairsville, Georgia. The next Past Tense will tell the stories of George Shevenock, who came to Camp Gordon …

May 5 was a beautiful, warm Saturday and perfect for the opening day of Dunwoody Farmer’s Market at Brook Run. Visiting the market reminded me that this area was once a farm community and some of those farmers sold their produce along the side of the road, while others found ways to deliver …