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Rome, Georgia

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Rome, Georgia

Rome, Georgia
City of Rome
View of Rome from the historic Myrtle Hill Cemetery

Location in Georgia
Country United States
State Georgia
County Floyd
 • Type Council-Manager
 • Mayor Jamie Doss
 • City Manager Sammy Rich
 • Total 29.8 sq mi (77.3 km2)
 • Land 29.4 sq mi (76.1 km2)
 • Water 0.5 sq mi (1.2 km2)
Elevation 614 ft (187 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 36,303
 • Density 1,190.5/sq mi (459.7/km2)
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
Area code(s) 706/762
FIPS code 13-66668[1]
GNIS feature ID 0356504[2]

Located in the Northwest Georgia and the 19th largest city in the state.

Rome was built at the confluence of the Etowah and the Oostanaula rivers, forming the Coosa River. Because of its strategic advantages, this area was long occupied by the Creek and later the Cherokee people. National leaders such as Major Ridge and John Ross resided here before Indian Removal.

The city has developed on seven hills with the rivers running between them, a feature that inspired the early European-American settlers to name it for Rome, the longtime capital of Italy. It developed in the antebellum period as a market and trading city due to its advantageous location on the rivers, by which it sent the rich regional cotton commodity crop downriver to markets on the Gulf Coast and export overseas.

It is the second largest city, after Georgia Highlands College.

In the late 1920s a United States company built a rayon plant in a joint project with an Italian company. This project and the American city of Rome were honored by Italy in 1929, when its dictator Benito Mussolini sent a replica of the statue of Romulus and Remus nursing from a mother wolf, a symbol of the founding myth of the original Rome.


  • Geography 1
  • History 2
    • Native American era 2.1
    • City founding period 2.2
    • Civil war period 2.3
    • Reconstruction era and 19th century 2.4
    • Twentieth century 2.5
      • Great Depression 2.5.1
  • Government 3
  • Arts and culture 4
    • Sites on the National Register of Historic Places 4.1
  • Demographics 5
  • Climate 6
  • Economy 7
  • Sports 8
  • Education 9
    • Rome City School District 9.1
    • Private schools 9.2
    • Floyd County School District 9.3
    • Higher education 9.4
  • Infrastructure 10
    • Highways 10.1
  • Media 11
    • Film production 11.1
    • Television production 11.2
    • Newspapers 11.3
    • Online media 11.4
    • Radio stations 11.5
  • Notable people 12
  • Gallery 13
  • References and notes 14
  • External links 15
  • Further reading 16


Rome is located at the confluence of the Floyd County, Georgia.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 29.8 square miles (77 km2) of which 29.4 square miles (76 km2) is land and 0.5 square miles (1.3 km2) is water. The total area is 1.54% water.

The seven hills that inspired the name of Rome are known as Blossom, Jackson, Lumpkin, Mount Aventine, Myrtle, Old Shorter, and Neely hills. (The latter is also known as Tower or Clock Tower Hill). Some of the hills have been partially graded since Rome was founded.


Native American era

People of the Mississippian culture are known to have inhabited the area from about 1000 CE. These people are believed to have died off from disease brought by exposure to the Spaniards in the late 16th century. The Cherokee migrated into the Southeast and established themselves in the early 17th century.

Specifics before the Spanish expeditions in the 16th century are largely unknown, but archeologists have found evidence of thousands of years of indigenous cultures along these rivers.

Native American territories in the Southeastern area of North America in 1715. State outlines are from later times.

There is some debate over whether Hernando de Soto was the first Spanish conquistador to encounter Native Americans in the area now known as Rome, but it is usually agreed that he passed through the region with his expedition in 1540.[4] In 1560, Tristán de Luna sent a detachment of 140 soldiers and two Dominican friars north along de Soto's route. They established relations with the Coosa chiefdom, as they recorded assisting the Coosa in a raid against the rebellious province of Napochín, in what is now known as Tennessee.[5] Exposed to new Eurasian infectious diseases, these mound builder peoples suffered high mortality rates, as they lacked immunity; within 20 years the community was abandoned.

The Creek emerged in the area, one of the major Muscogee-speaking tribes.[6] They occupied a broad territory before being pushed out by Cherokee migrating from Tennessee.

The Abihka tribe of Creek in the area of Rome later became part of the Upper Creek. They merged with other Creek tribes to become the Ulibahalis, who later migrated westward into Alabama in the general region of Gadsden.[7][8] By the mid-18th century, Iroquoian-speaking Cherokee had moved into the area and occupied it. They had moved down from areas of Tennessee, under pressure from settlement by European Americans migrating from eastern territories across the Appalachians.

Proclamation Line of 1763.

A Cherokee village named Chatuga was settled in this area during the late eighteenth century, in the period of the Chieftains Museum and is used to represent the history of the Cherokee in this area, especially Major Ridge.

In the 18th century, a high demand in Europe for American Proclamation Line of 1763.

1802 map of Georgia-Cherokee land claimed as part of the Compact of 1802 between Georgia and the United States.

In 1793, in response to a Cherokee raid into Tennessee, John Sevier, the Governor of Tennessee, led a retaliatory raid against the Cherokee in the vicinity of Myrtle Hill, in what was known as the Battle of Hightower.

In 1802, the United States and Georgia executed the Compact of 1802, in which Georgia sold its claimed Western lands (a claim dating to the colonial era) to the United States. In return, the federal government agreed to ignore Cherokee land titles and remove all Cherokee from Georgia. The commitment to evict the Cherokee was not immediately enforced, and Chiefs John Ross and Major Ridge led efforts to stop their removal, including several Federal lawsuits.

During the 1813 Creek Civil War, most Cherokee took the side of the Upper Creek Indians, who were more assimilated and willing to deal with European Americans, against the Red Stick or Lower Creek Indians, who lived more distant from the whites and maintained strong cultural traditions. Before the Cherokee moved to Head of Coosa, Chief Ridge commanded a company of warriors as a unit of the Tennessee militia, with Chief Ross as adjutant. This Cherokee unit was under the overall command of United States Major Andrew Jackson, and supported the Upper Creek. They were the part of the Creek who had adopted more European-American customs and were more aligned with American settlers. The Red Stick Creek lived in a more geographically removed area and held more closely to traditional Creek life. The Creek War played out within the US-British conflict of the War of 1812.

1822 map of Cherokee lands in Georgia

In 1829, European Americans discovered gold near gold rush in the United States. Congressional passage of the Indian Removal Act of 1830, which fulfilled the Compact of 1802, was related to that gold discovery and the desire of whites to settle the land, as well as President Andrew Jackson's commitment to removal.

Even before removal began, in 1831 Georgia's General Assembly passed legislation that claimed all Cherokee land in Northwest Georgia. This entire territory was called

  • Roger Aycock, All Roads to Rome, Georgia: W. H. Wolfe Associates, 1981.
  • Jerry R. Desmond, Georgia's Rome: A Brief History, Charleston: The History Press, 2008.
  • George Magruder Battey Jr., A History of Rome and Floyd County, Georgia 1540-1922, Georgia: Cherokee Publishing Company, 2000.
  • Sesquicentennial Committee of the City of Rome, Rome and Floyd County: An Illustrated History, The Delmar Co
  • Morrell Johnson Darko, The Rivers Meet: A History of African-Americans in Rome, Georgia, Darko, 2003.
  • Orlena M. Warner, When in Rome..., Georgia: Steven Warner, 1972. A collection of poems.

Further reading

  • Chieftain Museum web site
  • City of Rome web site
  • Greater Rome Convention & Visitors Bureau web site
  • New Georgia Encyclopedia entry
  • Rome Area Council for the Arts web site
  • Rome Area History Museum web site
  • Rome Chamber of Commerce web site
  • Rome International Film Festival web site
  • Heritage Room web site
  • Rome-Floyd County Library web site
  • USA Today: Idyllic and historic main streets across the USA

External links

  1. ^ a b c "American FactFinder".  
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names".  
  3. ^ Pullen, George (July 1, 2009). "Rome". New Georgia Encyclopedia. Georgia Humanities Council and the University of Georgia Press. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  4. ^ "North Georgia and Alabama". De Soto's Trail thru the Southeast. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  5. ^ Taylor, Samuel. "Tristan de Luna". Our Georgia History. Golden Ink. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Spanish Exploration". New Georgia Encyclopedia. Georgia Humanities Council and the University of Georgia Press. October 17, 2003. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  7. ^ Waselkov, Gregory A. and Marvin T. Smith "Upper Creek Archaeology" in McEwan, Bonnie G., ed. Indians of the Greater Southeast: Historical Archaeology and Ethnohistory (Gainesville: University of Florida Press, 2000) p. 244-245
  8. ^ Ethridge, Robbie Franklyn, Creek Country: The Creek Indians and Their World (Chapel Hill, North Carolina: UNC Press) p. 27
  9. ^ "Rome City Commission Archives" (PDF). March 3, 2008. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 29, 2008. 
  10. ^ "Cherokee County Historical Maps". Georgia Info. Digital Library of Georgia. 2001. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  11. ^ "Original Cherokee County Divided". Georgia Info. Digital Library of Georgia. May 28, 2001. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  12. ^ "Floyd County". Calhoun Times. September 1, 2004. p. 75. Retrieved 24 April 2015. 
  13. ^ Hart, Brett (July 1999). "Founders of Rome - Guide to Rome Georgia |". Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  14. ^ a b McElwee, Bobby. "Rome, Georgia". Roadside Georgia. Golden Ink. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  15. ^ Willett, Robert L. (2011). "The Lightning Mule Brigade -- Attack on Rome, Georgia". About North Georgia. Golden Ink. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  16. ^ Article on the history of Rome's forts. Archived November 20, 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  17. ^ "Fort Norton, Rome, Georgia". Roadside Georgia. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  18. ^ Charles A. Dana and J. H. Wilson, The Life of Ulysses S. Grant, Gurdon Bill & Company, 1868, p. 275
  19. ^ Eicher & Eicher, Civil War High Commands, p. 542.
  20. ^ "Noble Brothers Foundry". Sons of Confederate Veterans Camp 469. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  21. ^ "Welcome". Fort Attaway Preservation Society. Fort Attaway Preservation Society, Inc. 2009. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  22. ^ Acts Passed by the General Assembly of Georgia, Volume II. Atlanta, Georgia: Geo. W. Harrison, State Printer (Franklin Publishing House) 1892: Creating Levee Commission for Rome, Etc. No. 625 (pp. 585-590).
  23. ^ "Between the Rivers Historic District". Guide to Rome Georgia. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  24. ^ "Romulus and Remus Statue". Georgia Info. Digital Library of Georgia. 2010. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  25. ^ Great Depression. New Georgia Encyclopedia. 8 November 2007. Retrieved September 14, 2010. 
  26. ^ Boll Weevil. The New Georgia Encyclopedia. Retrieved October 20, 2010. 
  27. ^ Battey, George Magruder, 1887-1965 - A History of Rome and Floyd County, State of Georgia .. (Volume 1) Page 412
  28. ^ Battey, Page 409
  29. ^ Battey, pp. 412 and 415
  30. ^ "City of Rome Organization", Rome/Floyd County website
  31. ^ National Register of Historic Places National Park Service
  32. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  33. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  34. ^ Climate Summary for Rome, Georgia
  35. ^ "". Weatherbase. 2013.  Retrieved on September 28, 2013.
  36. ^ "Rome, Georgia", New Georgia Encyclopedia
  37. ^ Brugg Cable & Telecom
  38. ^ Suzuki Manufacturing
  39. ^ Neaton Manufacturing
  40. ^ Peach State Labs
  41. ^ Pirelli Tire Manufacturing
  42. ^ a b c "Rome tourism officials say visitors brought $9 million to area in 2010", Rome News-Tribune
  43. ^ "NAIA extends Rome contract for national championship for 5 more years", Rome News-Tribune
  44. ^ PIFL welcomes Georgia Fire, Professional Indoor Football League website
  45. ^ "Schools in Rome city". Georgia Department of Education. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  46. ^ "Free District Report for Rome City". 2005. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  47. ^ "Schools in Floyd County". Georgia Department of Education. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  48. ^ "Free District Report for Floyd County". 2005. Retrieved March 8, 2011. 
  49. ^ "King Cotton".  
  50. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai "Filming in Georgia’s Rome". Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  51. ^ "The Substitute: Failure Is Not an Option".  
  52. ^ "Drak Remains - The Prison". Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  53. ^ "Movie wants to film in Rome if school board grants use of the old Coosa Middle School".  
  54. ^ "Dance of the Dead movie filmed in Rome to be released on DVD".  
  55. ^ "Golgotha (2009) - Filming Locations".  
  56. ^ "Lonely Love (2009) - Filming Locations".  
  57. ^ "Theater of the Mind (2009) - Filming Locations".  
  58. ^ "Lynch Mob (2009) - Filming Locations".  
  59. ^ "Di passaggio (2009) - Filming Locations".  
  60. ^ "Revenge of the Sandman (2012) - Filming Locations".  
  61. ^ "All Hallows Evil: Lord of the Harvest (2012) - Filming Locations".  
  62. ^ "Identity Thief (2013) - Filming Locations".  
  63. ^ "Need for Speed (2014) - Filming Locations".  
  64. ^ "Blind Tiger: The Legend of Bell Tree Smith (2014)".  
  65. ^ Stewart, Jeremy (March 7, 2015). "Cast, crew of 'Ivide' shoot scenes at movie theater: Film moves to Rome for a day".  
  66. ^ "The Bread Squeezer (2006) - Filming Locations".  
  67. ^ "Capitalism Rocks! (2006) - Filming Locations".  
  68. ^ "Apparition Point (2007)".  
  69. ^ "Death Waits (2009)".  
  70. ^ "The Other Half (2009) - Filming Locations".  
  71. ^ "Der Gries (2010)".  
  72. ^ "Storage (2011)".  
  73. ^ "Next of Kin (2012)".  
  74. ^ "The Design (2014)".  
  75. ^ "The Baron and the Kid (1984)".  
  76. ^ "Episode Detail: Louisville Bookstore, Georgia Pants Factory, Key West Hotel, Idaho High School - Rezoned".  
  77. ^ "Full Episode: Samuel L. Jackson, Condoleezza Rice and Ruth Simmons".  
  78. ^ "Former Pants Factory".  
  79. ^ ""The Following": Season 1, Episode 1 "Pilot"".  
  80. ^ "Beyond Scared Straight Episode Guide: Season 3".  
  81. ^ "Beyond Scared Straight Episode Guide: Season 4".  
  82. ^ "Beyond Scared Straight: Season 5, Episode 2".  
  83. ^ "Nurse Makes Fresh Start on a Tiny Budget in Small Town Georgia (includes correct episode number)".  
  84. ^ "House Hunters Episode Guide (includes airdate)".  
  85. ^ "Nurse Makes Fresh Start on a Tiny Budget in Small Town Georgia (includes full episode description)".  
  86. ^ Walker, Doug (February 28, 2015). "TV movie "Kingmakers" to be filmed in Rome next month".  
  87. ^ "My Mother/Agent (2010– )".  
  88. ^ Appel, Jacob M. Phoning Home USC Press, 2014

References and notes


Notable people

Call Letters Frequency Nickname Format
WGPB 97.7 FM NPR Public Radio
WLAQ 1410 AM n/a Talk
WQTU 102.3 FM Q102 Hot AC
WRGA 1470 AM n/a News/Talk
WSRM 93.5 FM LifeFM Contemporary Christian
WROM 710 AM n/a Gospel Music
WTSH 107.1 FM South 107 Country
WATG 95.7 FM 95.7 The Ridge Classic Hits
WRBF 104.9 FM 104.9 The Rebel Classic Rock (Southern)

Radio stations

  • Coosa Valley News
  • Hometown Headlines
  • Real Fast News
  • Rome 11 Alive
  • Rome Newswire
  • Rome Sports Net

Online media


  • My Mother/Agent (2010)[87]
Year Title Episode(s) Notes
1984 The Baron and the Kid N/A Starring [75][50]
1991 Perfect Harmony A television film, it features several scenes shot at Berry College.[50]
1993 Class of '61 A television film.[50]
2000 Ford commercial [50]
2005 Rezoned 1.05 "Louisville Bookstore, Georgia Pants Factory, Key West Hotel, Idaho High School" Episode features the former Rome Manufacturing Company & Coosa Pants Factory in downtown Rome, now a family home.[76]
2009 16 and Pregnant 1.05: "Whitney"
2012 Finding Your Roots 1.07: "Samuel L. Jackson, Condoleezza Rice, and Ruth Simmons" Stock footage of Rome’s historic downtown is used in the opening scenes of the episode.[77]
abt 2012-13 You Live in What? unclear Episode features the same factory, and now home, featured in the 2005 episode of Rezoned.[78]
2013 The Following 1.01: "Pilot" [50][79]
Beyond Scared Straight 3.13: "Floyd County Jail, GA" [80]
4.02: "Floyd County, GA: Deputy Lyle Returns" [81]
5.02: "Floyd County, GA: Snitches Get Stitches" [82]
House Hunters 78.08: "Nurse Makes Fresh Start on a Tiny Budget in Small Town Georgia" [50][83][84][85]
The Haves and the Have Nots N/A Filming for the production has taken place in Rome throughout the series.[50]
2014 If Loving You Is Wrong
2015 Kingmakers A television film and possible James Strong. Filming started in March at Berry College and around Rome's historic downtown.[86]

Television production

Other uses in film
  • The Bread Squeezer (2006)[50][66]
  • Capitalism Rocks! (2006)[50][67]
  • Apparition Point (2007)[50][68]
  • Death Waits (2009)[50][69]
  • The Other Half (2009)[50][70]
  • Der Gries (2010)[50][71]
  • Storage (2011), filmed at Berry College[72]
  • Next of Kin (2012)[73]
  • The Design (2014)[74]
Short films
Year Title Notes
1910 King Cotton Silent documentary.[49][50]
1979 The Double McGuffin Filming took place at Berry College and Darlington School.[50]
1986 The Mosquito Coast The film features scenes from Rome and Massachusetts. Visible from Rome are the historic Floyd County Courthouse and Oostanaula River.[50]
1991 Dutch The comedy features several scenes shot at Berry College and elsewhere in Rome.[50]
2000 Remember the Titans The film was shot partly on the Berry College campus.[50]
2001 The Substitute 4: Failure Is Not an Option The [51][50]
2002 Sweet Home Alabama The romantic comedy was filmed partially on the Berry College campus, prominently featuring the former Martha Berry residence, the Oak Hill Berry Museum. Scenes were also shot at the Coosa Country Club.[50]
2004-05 Sugar Creek Gang (series) All five films based on the children's book series of the same name were filmed in Rome.[50]
2005 The Derby Stallion [50]
2006 Dark Remains The horror movie was filmed almost entirely at the Floyd County Prison.[50]
Big Red: The Ghost of Floyd County Prison This documentary was filmed alongside the production of Dark Remains. It chronicles a ghost story from the Floyd County Prison.[50][52]
2007 Freelance [50]
2008 Dance of the Dead An Myrtle Hill Cemetery, Shorter College, and the Claremount House.[50][53][54]
Dangerous Calling [50]
Golgotha Scenes for the film were shot at Berry College.[50][55]
2009 Lonely Love [50][56]
Theater of the Mind A documentary about the history of the Golden Age of Radio, it shot scenes in Rome.[57]
Lynch Mob [50][58]
Di passaggio Documentary film which shot scenes on the Berry College Campus.[59]
2012 Revenge of the Sandman Low-budget horror film that was shot partly in Rome.[60]
All Hallows Evil: Lord of the Harvest Low-budget horror film that was shot partly in Rome.[50][61]
2013 Identity Thief Select "street scenes" were filmed in Rome.[62]
Butch Walker: Out of Focus Documentary film about the life of Butch Walker.[50]
2014 Need for Speed Scenes for the film were shot at Myrtle Hill Cemetery and in rural Floyd County near [63][50]
The System [50]
Blind Tiger: The Legend of Bell Tree Smith [50][64]
2015 Ivide Scenes for the film were shot at Rome Cinemas on March 6, 2015.[65]
Feature films

Film production


  • U.S. Route 27 runs north to south through the city
  • U.S. Route 411
  • Georgia State Route 20
  • Georgia State Route 53
  • Georgia State Route 101.

Major highway include:



College Public/
Type Notes
Berry College Private Liberal Arts Founded in 1902 by Martha Berry
Georgia Northwestern Technical College Public Technical Formerly "Coosa Valley Technical College," founded in 1962
Georgia Highlands College Public GA Community College Formerly Floyd Junior College
Shorter University Private Liberal Arts Formerly Shorter College which was founded in 1873

Rome is home to four colleges:

Higher education

The Floyd County School District, for families outside the city limits, holds grades pre-school to grade twelve, consisting of eleven elementary schools, four middle schools, and four high schools.[47] The district has 645 full-time teachers and over 10,272 students.[48]

Floyd County School District

  • Darlington School is a coeducational, college-preparatory day and boarding school established in 1905. It offers classes ranging from pre-kindergarten to grade 12, divided into a lower, middle and upper school.
  • Unity Christian School is a private, coeducational, college preparatory school established in 1998. It offers classes ranging from pre-kindergarten to grade 12, divided into a lower and upper school.
  • Berry College Elementary and Middle School offers an intimate atmosphere and the resources and expertise of a liberal-arts college faculty.
  • Providence Preparatory Academy offers kindergarten through the grade 11, as of 2015, and plans to complete adding grades to the 12th year.
  • St. Mary’s Catholic School, established in 1945, offers pre-kindergarten through 8th grade, with two classes per grade level.

Rome has several private schools:

Private schools

The Rome City School District holds grades pre-school to grade twelve, operating eight elementary schools, the Rome Middle School, and the Rome High School.[45] The district has 323 full-time teachers and more than 5,395 students.[46]

Rome City School District


The indoor football team who play in Rome as a member of the Professional Indoor Football League.[44]

Rome has hosted stages of the 2007.

Rome has hosted the NAIA Football National Championship since 2008. It will continue to host this event until 2015.[43]

Since 2003, Rome has been the home of the Rome Braves, a Class A affiliate of the Atlanta Braves. The Rome Braves compete in the South Atlantic League. According to numbers released in 2010, sports tourism is a major industry in Rome and Floyd County.[42] In 2010, sport events netted over $10 million to the local economy, as reported by the Greater Rome Convention & Visitors Bureau.[42] Of these, tennis tournaments accounted for over $6 million to the Rome economy in 2010.[42]


. State Mutual Insurance Company Other major companies in Rome include [41] Tire.Pirelli and the North American headquarters of [40] [37] National companies that are part of Rome's technology industry include Brugg Cable and Telecom,

Rome is also well known in the region for its medical facilities, particularly Georgia Health Sciences University.

Rome has long had the strength of economic diversity, with an economy founded in manufacturing, education, healthcare, technology, tourism, and other industries.[36] In 1954, General Electric established a factory to build medium transformers. In the 1960s, Rome contributed to the American effort in the Vietnam War when the Rome Plow Company produced Rome plows, large armored vehicles used by the U.S. military to clear jungles. In the latter part of the 20th century, many carpet mills prospered in the areas surrounding Rome.


Climate data for Rome, Georgia
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 53
Average low °C (°F) 31
Average precipitation mm (inches) 4.9
Source: Weatherbase[35]

The climate in this area is characterized by relatively high temperatures and evenly distributed precipitation throughout the year. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Rome has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.[34]


The median household income was $30,930, and the median family income was $37,775. Males had a median income of $30,179 versus $22,421 for females. The per capita income for the city was $17,327. About 15.3% of families and 20.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 29.1% of those under the age of 18 and 16.3% of those 65 and older.

The age distribution was 24.2% under the age of 18, 12.1% from 18 to 24, 27.7% from 25 to 44, 20.1% from 45 to 64, and 15.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 90.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.2 males.

There were 13,320 households of which 29.1% had children under the age of 18 living in them, 41.2% were married couples living together, 17.0% had a female householder with no husband present, wend 36.7% are non-families. 30.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.1% have someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 3.07.

At the 2000 census,[1] there were 34,980 people, 13,320 households and 8,431 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,190.5 per square mile (459.7/km²). There were 14,508 housing units at an average density of 493.7 per square mile (190.7/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 63.12% White, 27.66% African American, 1.42% Asian, 0.39% Native American, 0.16% Pacific Islander, 5.61% from other races, and 1.64% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 10.35% of the population.


Site[31] Year
Address Year
Dr. Robert Battey House 1850 725 East 2nd Ave. 1982
Berry Schools North of Rome on U.S. Hwy 27 1978
Between the Rivers Historic District Roughly bounded by the Etowah and Oostanaula rivers, 7th Ave., and West 4th St. 1983
Ext. 1989
Chieftains 1792 501 Riverside Parkway. 1971
Double-Cola Bottling Company 419 East Second Ave. 2006
East Rome Historic District Roughly bounded by Walnut Ave., McCall Blvd., East 8th and 10th Sts. 1985
Etowah Indian Mounds North bank of Etowah River 1966
Floyd County Courthouse 5th Ave. and Tribune St. 1980
Jackson Hill Historic District Jackson Hill, between GA Hwy 53 and the Oostanaula River 1997
Joseph Ford House Address Restricted 1980
Lower Avenue A Historic District Avenue A between North 5th St. and Turner-McCall Blvd. 1983
Main High School 41 Washington Dr. 2002
Mayo's Bar Lock and Dam On the Coosa River, 8 miles SW of Rome 1989
Mt. Aventine Historic District Address restricted 1983
Myrtle Hill Cemetery 1857 Bounded by S. Broad, and Myrtle Sts., Pennington, and Branham Aves. 1983
Oakdene Place Roughly bounded by the Etowah River, Queen, and East 6th Sts. 1983
Rome Clock Tower 1871 Corner of East 2nd Street and East 5th Avenue 1980
South Broad Street Historic District South Broad St. and Etowah Terrace 1983
Sullivan—Hillyer House 309 East 2nd Ave. 2002
Thankful Baptist Church 935 Spiderwebb Dr. 1985
U.S. Post Office and Courthouse West 4th Ave. and East 1st St. 1975
Upper Avenue A Historic District Roughly bounded by Oostanaula River, Turner-McCall Blvd., Avenue B and W. 11th St. 1983

Rome has many historic homes and businesses, some of which are listed on the National Register of Historic Places:

Sites on the National Register of Historic Places

1930s WPA mural depicting several landmarks around Rome, at the US Post Office.

Arts and culture

In the 2000 census, White made up 63.12% of the population, African Americans made up 27.66% of the city's population; other minorities comprise the remainder. A total of 10.36% of residents identified as Hispanics of any race. The nine-member commission elects a mayor and vice-mayor from among its members for specific terms. In addition, the commission hires a city manager for daily operations. Commission members are elected at-large from three wards of the city; each ward has three seats on the commission. All voters vote for candidates for each position; and candidates may be elected by plurality voting. Members are elected for four-year staggered terms, with Commissioners from Wards 1 and 3 elected at the same time, and Commissioners from Ward 2 two years later.[30]

The Court upheld the constitutionality of the act, including the prohibition of unintentional discrimination in order to mitigate the potential that a jurisdiction may engage in intentional discrimination. Because of these findings, the Court affirmed the lower court ruling

In City of Rome v. United States,446 U.S. 156 (1980), the US Supreme Court ruled on the city's argument that the Attorney General had acted incorrectly in failing to approve the city's changes to its election system and its annexations. (The city did not seek preclearance of its charter changes to its election system in 1966, nor did it get approval of its 60 annexations from November 1, 1964 to February 10, 1975, which were both required under the law.)

This entire proposal was subject to review under the VRA; the city challenged the Attorney General's authority to reject the annexation and electoral systems for each c, as plaintiffs believed the reduction in seats and requirement for majority ranking to win would dilute the voting power of the African-American minority. In 1970 the city had a population of 30,759, with an ethnic composition of 76.6 white and 23.4 black. African Americans had been essentially disenfranchised for decades under the state constitution and practices since the turn of the 20th century.

At the same time, the Board of Education was increased to six members elected from three wards, with two numbered positions to be elected at-large from the city for each ward, A majority vote was required to win, with runoff procedures to apply to the top two candidates if no majority was achieved. A residency requirement was added for the Board members.

In 1966, after the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was passed, the city amended its charter with approval by the state legislature, reducing the number of wards from nine to three, with commission members to be elected by at-large voting to numbered positions, three for each ward, with three wards in total. Candidates were required to win by majority vote, with run-off elections between the top two candidates for each seat if no majority emerged after the first round of voting. From 1964 to 1975, the legislature approved the city's 60 acts for annexations, which mostly appropriated areas with white-majority populations.

The city of Rome has a commission-manager form of government, which it first adopted in 1918. The city's charter as approved by the legislature authorized a nine-member City Commission and a five-member Board of Education, to be elected concurrently, on an at-large basis by a plurality of the vote. The city was divided into nine wards, with one city commissioner from each ward to be chosen in the city-wide election. There was no residency requirement for Board of Education candidates.


In a private 'works project' to provide employment to men out of work, S.H. Smith, Sr. decided to replace the Armstrong hotel. After demolishing it, he employed many people to help build the towering Greystone Hotel at the corner of Broad St. and East Second St.. The Rome News-Tribune reported on November 30, 1933 an increase in local building permits for a total of $95,800; of this amount, $85,000 was invested by S.H. Smith, Sr., in the construction of the Greystone Hotel. He added the Greystone Apartments in 1936.[29]

While the Rome area was not as devastated as many big cities during the Depression, many families struggled through hard financial times. Jobs were scarce, and prices of food and basic commodities went up. The federal "postal employees took a fifteen per cent cut in pay, and volunteered a further ten per cent reduction in work time in order to save the jobs of substitute employees who otherwise would have been thrown out of work."[27] Among fundraising activities for the poor, wealthier residents bought tickets to a show put on by local performers; the fares were paid to grocers, who made boxes of food to sell at a discount price to needy families.[28]

The boll weevil destroyed many fields of cotton and put a damper on Rome's economy. [26] The Great Depression was preceded by the "Cotton Bust" across the South. This reached Rome in the mid-1920s, and caused many farmers to move away, sell their land or convert to other agricultural crops, such as corn. Farm workers were displaced, and many African Americans left the area in the

In Rome, the effect of the Great Depression was significantly less severe than in other, larger cities across the United States. Since Rome was an agricultural town, food could be grown in surrounding areas. Rome's textile mill continued operating, providing steady jobs as a buffer against the hardships of the Great Depression.[25]

Great Depression

In 1940, anti-Italian sentiment due to World War II became so strong that the Rome city commission moved the statue into storage to prevent vandalism. They replaced it with an American flag. In 1952, the city restored the statue to its former location in front of City Hall.[24]

"This statue of the Capitoline Wolf, as a forecast of prosperity and glory, has been sent from Ancient Rome to New Rome during the consulship of Benito Mussolini in the year 1929."

In 1928, the American Chatillon Company began construction of a Tate, Georgia, with a brass plaque inscribed:

In the early 20th century, the Georgia Assembly approved a charter for the city to establish a commission-manager form of government, a reform idea to add a management professional to the team.

Sign at the Rome, GA bus station from 1943

Twentieth century

Due to its riverside location, Rome has occasionally suffered serious flooding. The flood of 1886 inundated the city to such depth that a steamboat traveled down Broad Street.[14] In 1891, upon recommendation of the levees to protect the town against future floods.[22] In the late 1890s, additional flood control measures were instituted, including raising the height of Broad Street by about 15 feet. As a result, the original entrances and ground-level floors of many of Rome's historic buildings became covered over and had to serve as basements.[23]

In 1871, Rome constructed a water tank on Neely Hill, which overlooks the downtown district. This later was adapted as a clock tower visible from many points in the city. It has served as the town's iconic landmark ever since, and is featured in the city's crest and local business logos. As a result, Neely Hill is also referred to as Tower or Clock Tower Hill. In this period the city established its first public schools, authorized by the state legislature in 1868 for the first time for all children, with some designated funding. Schools were segregated and tended to have short sessions limited by funding. Freedmen had the power to vote under new amendments to the US Constitution, affecting local politics. The abolition of slavery required new labor arrangements.

Along the Clock Tower (right) on Neely Hill.

Reconstruction era and 19th century

[21].Atlanta Campaign, Union forces destroyed Rome's forts, iron works, the rail line to Kingston, and any other material that could be useful to the South's war effort as they withdrew from Rome to participate in the Sherman's Special Field Orders, No. 120 Davis' forces occupied Rome for several months, making repairs to use the damaged forts and briefly quartering General Sherman. Foreshadowing [20] In May 1864, Union General

Vandever and his officers in Rome. (1864, on East 4th Ave)
The historic Thornwood mansion was occupied by Union troops during the Civil War. The house is now part of the Darlington School Campus.

Rome's iron works were an important manufacturing center during the U.S. Civil War, supplying many cannons and other armaments to the Confederate effort. In April 1863 the city was defended by Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest against Union Colonel Abel Streight's "lightning mule" raid from the area east of modern-day Cedar Bluff, Alabama.[15] General Forrest tricked Colonel Streight into surrendering just a few miles shy of Rome. Realizing their vulnerability, Rome's city council had allocated $3,000 to build three fortifications. Although these became operational by October 1863, efforts to strengthen the forts continued as the war progressed. These forts were named after Romans who had been killed in action: Fort Attaway was on the western bank of the Oostanaula River, Fort Norton was on the eastern bank of the Oostanaula, and Fort Stovall was on the southern bank of the Etowah River. The Confederates later built at least one other fort on the northern side of the Coosa River.[16][17]

Rome in 1864, during the occupation by Union forces.

Civil war period

By 1860 the population had reached xxxxx in the city, and xxxx in the county. [14] The Rome economy continued to grow. In 1849, an 18-mile rail spur to the

By 1838, the Cherokee had run out of legal options in resisting removal. They were the last of the major Southeast tribes to be forcibly moved to the homes and businesses were taken over by whites, with much of the property distributed through a land lottery.

Much of upland Georgia was developed as what became known as the Black Belt, named for the fertile soil. Planters brought or purchased many enslaved African Americans as workers for the labor-intensive crop. The leading Cherokee participated in the cultivation of cotton as a commodity crop, which soon replaced deer-skin trading as a source of wealth in the region. The first steamboat navigated the Coosa River to Rome in 1836, reducing the time-to-market for the cotton trade and speeding travel between Rome and New Orleans on the Gulf Coast, the major port for export of cotton.

With the entire area still occupied primarily by Cherokee, the city developed to serve the agrarian needs of the new cotton-based economy. Invention of the cotton gin in the late eighteenth century made processing of short-staple cotton profitable. This was the type of cotton that best thrived in the upland areas, in contrast to that grown on the Sea Islands and in the Low Country.

Rome was founded in 1834 as European Americans increasingly settled in Georgia. Founders were Col. Daniel R. Mitchell, Col. Zacharia Hargrove, Maj. Philip Hemphill, Col. William Smith, and Livingston to Rome.[13]

City founding period


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