Each year, on the third Monday of February, we celebrate the birth of George Washington with Presidents Day. While George Washington may have been born and raised in Virginia, he started the presidential tradition that would lead to three presidents with ties to homes in Georgia. Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Jimmy Carter all have roots in Georgia. This Presidents Day, we remember their time spent in the south.
Woodrow Wilson was born in Staunton, Virginia, but quickly moved to Augusta where he lived for a decade in the Presbyterian Manse while his father served as minister of the First Presbyterian Church. After several years spent in the Carolinas and Virginia, Woodrow returned to Atlanta to start his law practice. A year later, he decided to enter John Hopkins University to study for a doctorate in history and political science. When President Wilson ran for office, he did so from the state of New Jersey, but it was his strong southern ties that helped him get elected to office.
Visitors to Augusta can take a tour of The Boyhood Home of President Woodrow Wilson. This house museum depicts the early life of the 28th president as he grew up in Georgia during the Civil War and Reconstruction.
Franklin D. Roosevelt (FDR), the only president to have been elected to serve four terms, was born to a prestigious family in New York. He traveled to Warm Springs, Ga. in search of hydrotherapy for his polio stricken body. It was the soothing warm spring water that brought FDR to Warm Springs, but it was his love for the area and commitment to other polio patients that resulted in him purchasing a resort in the rural Georgia town. During his presidency, FDR spent a great deal of time at his “Little White House” and actually died in his Georgia residence on April 12, 1945.
During his time in Georgia, FDR spent time getting to know the farmers and left behind a community that would forever be changed by his passion and generosity. Visitors to Warm Springs can tour his Georgia estate, which remains the same as it was on his last day, and see personal artifacts that had belonged to FDR including his beloved car that had been redesigned to be driven without the use of his feet. Visitors will also view the edited version of FDR’s “Unspoken Speech” and the “Unfinished Portrait,” a portrait that was being painted at the time of his death.
In addition to his presidency, FDR left a legacy for helping those in need. The Roosevelt Warm Springs rehab facility continues to provide quality care to those with disabilities and March of Dimes, which was established initially by FDR to fight polio, works today to improve healthy pregnancies.
Jimmy Carter, the 39th president of the United States, is the only president to have been born and raised in Georgia. Prior to and following his term in office, President Carter was a peanut farmer in Plains, Ga. He was a member of the Naval ROTC program at Georgia Tech and served as a U.S. Naval officer until his father’s death required him to return home to Georgia in 1953. Prior to his presidency, Carter served two terms as a Georgia State Senator and one term as the Governor of Georgia.
Following a difficult term in office, President Carter left Washington D.C. and returned to his peanut farm in Georgia. However, he never stopped being an advocate for world peace. In 2002, President Carter was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his continued efforts to find peaceful solutions for international conflicts. Visitors can learn more about President Carter’s time in office by visiting the Jimmy Carter Library and Museum. The Carter Center, a not-for-profit organization started by the Carters, is also located in Atlanta. In partnership with Emory University, this organization builds upon President Carter’s beliefs by working to advance human rights and alleviate human suffering.
From leading the country through World Wars I and II to being a steward of international peace, these three men used their southern connections to help them lead America.
With all this history, Georgia is a great place to raise a family, and now is a great time to purchase new homes in Atlanta. Read through the site to learn more about available homes and Atlanta communities.