Valdosta 2 9
Valdosta is the second-largest city in the state of Georgia and is the county seat of Lowndes County. Located in Central Georgia, it lies 125 miles southeast of Atlanta. As of the 2010 census, Valdosta had a population of 60,052 residents. It is the 11th largest city in the state. The city was founded in 1838 as an Old West town named Calhoun and was renamed for Senator George W. Caldwell two years later. The city became known as the hub of north Georgia's pine industry from the late 19th century until the mid-20th century. A major highway, North Avenue (Georgia State Route No. 1), bisects central Valdosta and leads northwest to Chattanooga, Tennessee, and southeast to Thomasville and Americus, Georgia. North Avenue intersects several highways that connect with other cities in north Georgia and southeast Alabama; these include U.S. Route 278 (US 278) which heads east to Cedartown and west to Commerce; US 319 runs south to Carrollton; US 129 runs south to Carrollton and east towards Cambridge; US 441 connects with Thomson; and GA 181 connects with Cornelia, another community in north Georgia. Valdosta has three hospitals: Doctors Medical Center Hospital, Doctors Hospital, and Southern low cost General Hospital (formerly Northside Hospital). The main attractions are South Main Street with its historic downtown section lined with antebellum mansions dating back to when Valdosta was capital city of Georgia during Reconstruction
There are many historic sites in the city of Valdosta, Georgia, including the historic First African Baptist Church, Woodrow Wilson Birthplace, and the Lowndes Courthouse Square Park. The Woodrow Wilson Birthplace is a national historic site located in Valdosta. The Lowndes Courthouse Square Park is a national historic site located in Valdosta. The city was founded in 1838 as the capital of the newly formed Lowndes County. The area was settled in the 1830s by pioneers from Virginia and North Carolina. In 1834, the first Lowndes County Courthouse was built in Calhoun, the county seat in 1838. Calhoun was renamed Valdosta in 1839, after George W. Caldwell, a Washington, DC-based senator and former Georgia governor. Read more about Valdosta.
The city lies on the banks of the Black Creek, an east-flowing tributary of the Ocmulgee River. The city limits extend west on the creek to the Ocmulgee River. North and east of the downtown area are residential neighborhoods. South of the downtown area are the factories of the plywood industry. Valdosta is located in the South Coastal Plain region of the state. The South Coastal Plain is a vast area of level land with few natural rocks. The soil is very fertile, but is easily eroded by heavy storms. Elevation is around 3 feet above sea level. In the center of the city is an elevated area called Courthouse Square. The square is surrounded by the old city courthouse, a Montgomery Ward building, and the former city hall. Other notable buildings include the First African Baptist Church, the United Methodist Church of Valdosta, the Lowndes County Courthouse, and the Woodrow Wilson Birthplace.
Valdosta's climate is described as humid subtropical by the Köppen system. Summer months are hot with temperatures averaging around 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Winter months are mild with temperatures around 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Spring and fall months are unpredictable with high humidity and occasional thunderstorms. The annual precipitation is 51 inches, and the annual mean temperature is 73 degrees Fahrenheit. The wettest month is May with an average of 5.93 inches of precipitation and the driest month is January with an average of 4.81 inches of precipitation. The all-time highest temperature was 117 degrees Fahrenheit, while the all-time lowest temperature was 29 degrees Fahrenheit. Valdosta averages an average of 60 days of thunderstorms a year.
As of 2010, the city of Valdosta had a population of 60,052 people. The racial makeup of the city was 41.3% black, 46.8% white, and 1.1% Asian. Hispanics and Latinos of any race made up 13.7% of the population.
Cityscape and tourism
With Georgia State University, the city is home to many visitors from the lower South, the Midwest, and the Northeast. Tourism is also bolstered by several area theme parks, including the Southern Gospel Festival and the Georgia Renaissance Festival. The city is a port of entry into the Florida Panhandle and Florida Gulf Coast. The historic areas of Valdosta, including the First African Baptist Church, the Woodrow Wilson Birthplace, and the Lowndes Courthouse, are all part of the National Register of Historic Places, and are popular with tourists. The First African Baptist Church has been a National Historic Landmark since 1966. The Lowndes Courthouse, built in 1859, is the oldest courthouse in continuous service in the state of Georgia.
The main public high school for the city is Lowndes High School, which has a rich history, including many state championships and awards. In addition, Valdosta has two private high schools, Grace Christian Academy and St. Thomas Aquinas High School. Private elementary schools in the city include John Henry Gill, L. C. Welch, and Woodrow Wilson Elementary schools, among others.
Sports and recreation
The city is home to the Valdosta Braves, a professional baseball team. Valdosta has also hosted the National Finals Rodeo since 1987. The city also has two golf courses and a marina. The city is home to the Valdosta Waterway, a waterway that connects the Black and Ocmulgee rivers. The waterway is open for boat traffic and rents paddle boats for tourists. The city has six public parks. The largest, Lowndes Courthouse Square Park, features a Civil War monument and a Civil War re-enactment held every year.
Health care and research facilities
The main hospital for the Lowndes County area is Doctors Medical Center Hospital. Other area hospitals include Doctors Hospital, North Central Georgia Medical Center, and Gainesville Regional Medical Center. Doctors Medical Center Hospital is also a high-security prison for the state of Georgia. The Georgia Department of Corrections operates the facility as a prison for male prisoners.
Culture and activities
The city has many cultural activities, including the Valdosta Symphony Orchestra, Valdosta Little Theatre, the Valdosta Museum of Art, and the Valdosta Historical Society. The city is also home to the Georgia Renaissance Festival, the Southern Gospel Music Festival, and the Southern Gospel Music Conference. Some events are held at Woodrow Wilson Birthplace Park. The Lowndes County Fair is held every September in Lowndes County. The Lowndes County History Museum is located in downtown Valdosta. The museum has exhibits on Lowndes County history, including the black experience during Reconstruction. The Lowndes County Courthouse Square Park is open to the public and features a Civil War monument. The square is also home to the Valdosta History Museum, which features artifacts and displays about Valdosta and Lowndes County history.
The city is served by U.S. Route 81, which connects with US 81 in Thomasville, Georgia and runs north to Chattanooga and south to Atlanta. The main east-west highway is Georgia State Route 1, which runs from the Florida border to Carrollton and connects with US 129 in the city. Browse around this site.
Notable people from Valdosta, Georgia
- Jimmy Carter - 39th President of the United States, former governor of Georgia, and former director of the United States Department of Agriculture - Clayton Cornelius "DOC" Cole - Originally from Calhoun, Georgia, Cole founded the National Farmers Organization, a proponent of trade protectionism, and helped create the Populist Party in Georgia - Milo "Clyde" Combs - A legendary baseball player who played in the Negro Leagues - James "Red" Grange - One of the first African-American football players and a Heisman Trophy winner - Jimmy Johnson - He played football at the University of Georgia and became one of the most successful coaches in football history - Mark Johnson - He played for the Atlanta Falcons, the Oakland Raiders, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before becoming a NASCAR driver - Michael Johnson - He played basketball at Georgia State University and was drafted by the Golden State Warriors in the second round - Lee Marvin - A native of Fort Valley, Georgia, Marvin is best known for his film roles, such as Private Joker in Sergeant York and Colonel Holl
Point of Interest #1 South Georgia Pecan Company: Production Campus, 2220 E Hill Ave, Valdosta, GA 31601
Point of Interest #2 City of Valdosta Utilities Department, 1016 Myrtle St, Valdosta, GA 31601
Point of Interest #3 Salvation Army Administrative Office Valdosta Georgia, 320 Smithland Pl, Valdosta, GA 31601