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Atlanta is a relatively young city. It began in 1837, when an almost random dot on the map was named "Terminus" during plans for railroad construction. After the railroads arrived, the renamed Atlanta proved to be a crucial transportation center in the Civil War. Home to the huge Confederacy munitions industry, it was burned by Sherman's Union army in 1864, an act immortalized in Gone With the Wind. Recovery after the war was quick: Atlanta was the archetype of the industrial "New South," championed by "boosters" – newspaper owners, bankers, politicians, and city leaders. Giants who based themselves here included Coca-Cola, source of a string of philanthropic gifts to the city. Black immigration increased its already considerable African-American population and led to the establishment of the thriving community, centered on Auburn Avenue, which was to produce Martin Luther King Jr.

Today's Atlanta is at first glance a typical large American city, but no visitor could fail to notice its progressive feel. The city elected the nation's first black mayor, the late Maynard Jackson, and African-American politicians continue to reach success here. Its hosting of the 1996 Olympics is just the highest profile success in a sustained catalogue of entrepreneurial achievements. Tourists come to Atlanta for its vibrant arts, dining, and nightlife scenes, but must-see tourist attractions include the various sites associated with Dr King to cultural institutions like the High Museum of Art and Atlanta History Center.

The flip side of the fact that there was no great reason to put a city here is that neither are there any obvious geographical factors to prevent Atlanta from growing indefinitely. The population of the entire metropolitan area now exceeds five million. Cut off by roaring freeways, Atlanta's neighbourhoods tend to have distinct identities; lavish Buckhead is only a short drive away from grungier, punky Little Five Points, but the two neighbourhoods have little in common.

Things to do in Atlanta:

The Fox Theatre
Georgia Aquarium
Golf in Atlanta
Grant Park
High Museum of Art & Local Galleries
Historic Neighbors
Historic West End
Inside CNN Studio Tour
Jimmy Carter Presidential Library & Museum
Legendary Luxury Shopping in Buckhead
LEGOLAND® Discovery Center
Margaret Mitchell House & Museum
Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site & Sweet Auburn District
Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament
Michael C. Carlos Museum
North Georgia Day Trips
Outlet Malls and Day Trip Shopping
Piedmont Park
See Atlanta From Above
Six Flags Over Georgia
Stone Mountain Park
Underground Atlanta
The William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum
World of Coca-Cola
Zoo Atlanta 
Alliance Theatre
Atlanta Botanical Garden
Atlanta Braves and Turner Field
Atlanta's Eclectic Neighborhoods
Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome
Atlanta Hawks and Atlanta Dream at Philips Arena
Atlanta Higher Education Centers Score an A+ in Culture!
Atlanta History Center
Atlanta Motor Sports
Atlanta Nightlife
Atlanta Opera and the Atlanta Ballet
Atlanta Symphony Orchestra
Atlantic Station
Bicycling, Electric Car and Walking Tours
Buckhead Arts & Galleries
Centennial Olympic Park
Center for Puppetry Arts
Chattahoochee River Fun
The Children's Museum of Atlanta
College Sports
Concerts in the City
Decatur Square
East Point
Fernbank Museum of Natural History
Festivals Galore 
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