25 Fun Facts About Georgia | Small State, Big Surprises

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25 Fun Facts About Georgia | Small State, Big Surprises

  1. Georgia is home to the smallest church in the US.
  2. The official state reptile is the gopher tortoise.
  3. Georgia’s state beverage is milk.
  4. It’s illegal to spit from a car or bus in Georgia.
  5. Georgia has an official state fossil – the shark tooth.
  6. Georgia has two cities named Social Circle.
  7. The town of Cumming, Georgia, forbids the sale of alcohol before noon on Sundays.
  8. Atlanta was originally named Terminus.
  1. There’s a town in Georgia called Experiment.
  2. Georgia is home to a museum dedicated to funeral history.
  3. Georgia hosts a championship grits-eating contest.
  4. The first telephone directory in the US only included 50 names, all in Atlanta.
  5. Georgia used to include parts of Alabama and Mississippi.
  6. Georgia has an underwater corn maze.
  7. Whistle-stops are illegal in Georgia.
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1. The Vidalia onion is Georgia’s official state vegetable.

These sweet onions are only grown in a specific region of South Georgia, thanks to unique soil conditions. Vidalia onions are known for their mild flavor and become a seasonal delicacy.

Whether eaten raw, grilled, or caramelized, they add a special sweetness to many dishes and are a point of pride for the state. It’s one of the tastiest Georgia fun facts!

2. The state of Georgia is the top producer of peanuts.

Georgia is nicknamed the ‘Peach State‘, but it’s actually the country’s leader in peanut production. Farmers in Georgia grow over half of the peanuts consumed in the United States.

Whether boiled, roasted, or transformed into peanut butter, peanuts remain a beloved snack and a significant part of the state’s agricultural heritage. They truly are one of the best facts about Georgia!

3. Georgia is home to the oldest state-chartered university in the United States.

The University of Georgia (UGA), located in Athens, was founded in 1785. It holds the distinction of being the first public university established in America.

UGA has a rich history and a vibrant campus, offering a wide range of programs to students from across the country. It’s a source of pride for the state of Georgia.

4. Georgia hosts the Masters Tournament, one of golf’s most prestigious events.

⛳ Georgia: Home of the Masters!

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Held annually at the Augusta National Golf Club, the Masters is a world-renowned sporting spectacle. Top golfers compete for the coveted green jacket.

The tournament’s beautiful setting and high level of play make it a must-watch for golf enthusiasts and showcase Georgia on a global stage. It’s a source of sporting excitement each spring.

5. Georgia is the largest state east of the Mississippi River.

While known for its Southern charm, Georgia boasts a significant land area. It’s geographically larger than many states out west, offering a wide range of landscapes.

From the Blue Ridge Mountains in the north to the coastal barrier islands, Georgia showcases remarkable natural diversity. It’s a great reminder not to underestimate its size.

6. The world’s largest drive-in restaurant is located in Georgia.

The Varsity, an iconic Atlanta landmark, holds the record for being the biggest drive-in on the planet. It’s famous for its chili dogs, onion rings, and a unique ordering system.

You’ll hear friendly carhops asking, “What’ll ya have?” and experience a taste of classic Americana. It’s a delicious slice of Georgia history.

7. St. Simons Island is home to a tree that’s over 400 years old.

Known as the Lover’s Oak, this majestic Southern live oak tree is a beloved sight on St. Simons Island. Local legend says couples who walk beneath its sprawling branches are destined for a long-lasting love.

The tree’s age and beauty make it a symbol of resilience and a reminder of Georgia’s deep roots. It’s a beautiful testament to the state’s natural wonders.

8. Georgia is the birthplace of miniature golf.

sport, miniature golf, golf
⛳ Georgia: Birthplace of Mini Golf Magic!

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While it might seem like a simple pastime, the game of miniature golf originated right here in Georgia. In 1929, Garnet Carter built the first mini-golf course in Lookout Mountain.

His creation became a popular attraction, leading to the spread of miniature golf throughout the country. It’s a quirky piece of trivia that adds to Georgia’s unique history.

9. The Okefenokee Swamp is the largest blackwater swamp in North America.

Tucked into the southeastern corner of Georgia lies the vast Okefenokee Swamp. This unique ecosystem covers over 400,000 acres and is teeming with diverse wildlife.

Visitors can explore the swamp by boat, encountering alligators, various bird species, and the lush beauty of its cypress forests. It’s an unforgettable natural wonder.

10. The Georgia Aquarium is one of the largest aquariums in the world.

Located in Atlanta, the Georgia Aquarium houses an incredible collection of marine life. Visitors can encounter whale sharks, beluga whales, manta rays, and countless other species.

11. Georgia was the 13th and last of the original colonies.

In 1733, Georgia was founded as the youngest of the original British colonies in North America. It was established as a haven for debtors and those seeking a new start.

Georgia’s colonial history played a significant role in the events leading to the American Revolution and the formation of the United States. Its unique founding story adds to its historical significance.

12. Georgia was the birthplace of Coca-Cola.

coca cola can on white table
🥤 Georgia: Birth of Coke!

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One of the world’s most iconic brands has its roots in Georgia. In 1886, pharmacist John Pemberton invented the original Coca-Cola formula in Atlanta.

Today, you can visit the World of Coca-Cola in Atlanta to explore the brand’s history and even sample different Coke flavors from around the world. It’s a testament to Georgia’s innovative spirit.

13. The gold rush in Dahlonega, Georgia, predated the California gold rush.

Before the frenzy out West, Georgia experienced its own gold rush in the 1820s. The discovery of gold in Dahlonega attracted thousands of prospectors to the region.

You can still visit the historic Dahlonega Gold Museum, housed in the old courthouse, and learn about this fascinating chapter of Georgia’s past. It’s a reminder of the state’s role in American history.

14. Martin Luther King Jr. was born in Atlanta, Georgia.

One of America’s most influential civil rights leaders, Martin Luther King Jr., called Atlanta his hometown. His birthplace and the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, where he served as a minister, are now national landmarks.

Atlanta played a pivotal role in the Civil Rights Movement, and Dr. King’s legacy continues to inspire progress towards equality. It’s a testament to the state’s role in shaping social justice.

15. The first Girl Scout cookies were sold in Savannah, Georgia.

In 1917, Girl Scouts in Savannah took the initiative to sell homemade cookies as a fundraiser. Their efforts sparked a tradition that has become a beloved part of American culture.

Today, Girl Scouts across the country sell a variety of cookies, supporting troop activities and empowering young entrepreneurs. This sweet fact highlights Georgia’s role in the iconic Girl Scout movement.

16. Georgia was the first state to allow 18-year-olds to vote.

a person is casting a vote into a box
🗳️ Georgia: Voter Vanguard!

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In 1943, Georgia made history by lowering the voting age from 21 to 18. This progressive decision predated the national adoption of the 26th Amendment in 1971.

Georgia’s move acknowledged the contributions of young adults and affirmed their right to participate in the democratic process. It’s a point of pride and a historical milestone in voting rights.

17. Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is the busiest airport in the world.

Hartsfield-Jackson handles a staggering amount of passenger traffic each year. Its strategic location and its role as a major hub for Delta Air Lines contribute to its impressive status.

For travelers passing through Georgia, this massive airport serves as a gateway to the rest of the world. If you enjoy fun facts about Georgia, it might surprise you to learn that the state is home to the busiest airport on the planet!

18. Georgia was named after King George II of England.

The state’s namesake honors the British monarch who granted the charter for the colony’s establishment in 1732. Its colonial history is reflected in its name.

Georgia was one of the original thirteen colonies that played a pivotal role in the American Revolution. It’s a reminder of the state’s historical origins.

19. The Honeybee is the official state insect of Georgia.

Recognizing the vital role honeybees play in pollination, Georgia honors them as a state symbol. Honeybees contribute significantly to the state’s agricultural success.

Their hard work supports various crops and ensures the health of diverse ecosystems. It’s a reminder of the importance of small but mighty creatures.

20. Georgia is a leading producer of pecans.

pecan nuts, nuts, ripe
🌰 Georgia: Nut Nirvana!

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Besides peanuts, Georgia is also known for its pecan production. Pecans are a popular ingredient in many desserts, including the classic pecan pie.

Georgia’s climate and soil conditions make it ideal for growing pecan trees. It’s a significant part of the state’s agricultural output.

This classic tune, made famous by Ray Charles, captures the essence of Georgia’s beauty and charm. It was written in 1930 by Hoagy Carmichael and Stuart Gorrell.

The song’s nostalgic lyrics evoke images of sweet Georgia pines, Southern hospitality, and a longing for a beloved place. It’s a timeless musical tribute to the state.

22. Cumberland Island is home to a herd of wild horses.

A unique sight awaits visitors to Cumberland Island National Seashore, a population of feral horses roaming freely. These horses have a fascinating history, likely descendants of horses brought by Spanish explorers centuries ago.

They add a touch of wildness and a sense of wonder to the island’s pristine beaches and maritime forests. Their presence is a unique feature of Georgia’s diverse natural beauty.

23. The town of Helen, Georgia, is modeled after a Bavarian village.

Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Helen offers a surprising and charming experience. This quaint town is designed with Alpine architecture, giving it a distinctly European feel.

Visitors can enjoy German-style restaurants, shops, and festive events like Oktoberfest. It’s a whimsical and fun getaway within Georgia.

24. Georgia is known as the Peach State.

peaches, fruits, food - Fun Facts About Georgia
🍑 Georgia: Peachy Paradise!

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Peaches have become synonymous with Georgia, even though the state’s top crop is actually peanuts. Georgia peaches are renowned for their sweetness and juiciness, particularly during the summer season.

You’ll find peach festivals, peach-infused recipes, and roadside stands selling fresh peaches throughout Georgia. It’s a delicious part of the state’s identity!

25. Atlanta holds the world record for the largest sweet tea.

In 2016, Atlanta set the record with a 2,524-gallon serving of sweet iced tea. It was even served in a giant mason jar for a truly Southern touch.

This quirky record highlights Georgia’s love for this refreshing beverage and its penchant for doing things in a big way. It’s one of the most entertaining Georgia facts!

FAQs

Georgia is located in the southeastern region of the United States, bordered by Florida to the south, Alabama to the west, Tennessee and North Carolina to the north, and South Carolina to the east.

The capital of Georgia is Atlanta, which is also the largest city in the state and a major cultural and economic hub of the southeastern United States.

Georgia football holds a special place in the hearts of many residents, as it represents the state’s passion for sports. The University of Georgia Bulldogs football team, based in Athens, is particularly beloved and has a rich history of success.

The Georgia colony was established in 1732 by James Oglethorpe as a haven for debtors and a buffer between the British colonies and Spanish Florida. It played a crucial role in the early development of the southeastern United States.

The flag of Georgia features three horizontal stripes of red, white, and red, with a blue canton containing the state’s coat of arms. The coat of arms includes symbols representing the state’s history, including a depiction of the state’s motto, “Wisdom, Justice, and Moderation.”

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