Calling All Virginia-Highland History Buffs!

virginia-highland in the early 20th century

The Virginia-Highland Civic Association Preservation & History Committee formed nearly two years ago and has made great progress.  We’re inviting all lovers of history to play an important role: join our committee for starters, and  become the History Champion of your subdivision.

Virginia-Highland is actually made up of many subdivisions and was primarily developed from the early 1900’s through the late 40’s. The number of named subdivisions varies depending on which history you look at. The  disparity is often a product of incomplete developments being absorbed (or expanding) into larger subdivisions.

The map shown below gives a rough idea of the key historic subdivisions and the approximate dates of their development. We’d love for our Subdivision History Champions to help us uncover as much history as we can, subdivision by subdivision.  We’ve learned a lot, but there is much more to know.

We can advise you on the process, scanning specs and best places to look for historic information. The type of history you collect could depend on your own personal curiosity and where it leads you. Oral histories, images, and documents are productive starting points, as are identifying and protecting landmarks, and investigating subdivsion historic designation. The Preservation & History Committee can advise you in all these processes.

The primary subdivisons noted on the map shown below are:

1.      Todd / Liddell Estate – 1904, 1932

2.      Oak Grove / North Highalnd – 1907

3.      Highland View – 1911

4.      Atkins Park – 1912

5.      Realty Mortgage Development – 1913

6.      Adair Park – 1916

7.      Virginia Avenue Subdivision (Collection) – 1916

8.      Virginia Hills – 1921

9.      North Boulevard Park – 1916

10.   Rosewood Park – 1922

11.   F.A. Ames Property / Virginia Highlands – 1922

12.   Kelly – 1924

13.   Cheshire Estate – 1928

14.   Brookridge Park Subdivision – 1935

Click on the map image above to view a larger version.

To learn more about our committee and see a little of the history we’ve been working on, visit the committee’s page at vahi.orghttps://vahi.org/planning/preservation/

Reach out to us directly at preservation@vahi.org. We’d love to get you involved!

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30 Additional Historic Plat Maps Added

Houses once stood on the land that is now John Howell Park, and the Inman School's trailers and playing fields. This plat mapped out the land lots for those houses.

About a year ago, we posted 22 historic plat maps of various subdivisions that are now part of Virginia-Highland — these are the maps on which surveyors originally plotted how the land was subdivided into the lots that, for the most part, still exist today. To explore the maps, you can start by viewing the map of Virginia-Highland (“Map of Maps”), then select your specific area, then click through all available maps for that sector.

Now, the VHCA Preservation and History committee has provided an additional 30 historic plat maps which we have posted. The most enjoyable thing (for history and map geeks, anyway) is to explore from the overall VaHi map. However, if you want to know specifically which maps were added, here is a list:

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1928 maps now online (and many more)

Historic maps lovers rejoice! A 1928 detailed topographic survey of Atlanta is now available online and includes Virginia-Highland roughly from Inman School on south. Our new Historic Maps page provides you the links. For future reference, the Historic Maps page is linked from our site’s menu under “Planning/Variances” and then “Preservation/History”, as well as from the A-Z index.

The new page also links you to our amazing collection of original plat maps from the era that VaHi’s subdivisions were built; the 1949 aerial survey; and the 1911 and 1920 Sanborn fire maps.

For those with an interest in Atlanta’s history before VaHi existed, an entire 1878 city atlas was also recently made available online. We can also direct you to the full resolution version of the beautiful 1871 “bird’s eye view” illustration of Atlanta.

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Local businesses publish Highland Corridor map

Local businesses in Virginia-Highland have worked together with others in Morningside, Poncey-Highland, Inman Park, and the Old Fourth Ward to produce a foldable, glossy, paper map of the “Highland Corridor”, which is now being distributed at local businesses.

Download the brochure as a PDF
Google map of businesses listed on the map – perfect for using on your smartphone or tablet.

“To The Trade Only” is the facilitator of producing these maps on behalf of the local businesses which make up the district. Barbara English of that company provided us with the story behind the maps:

Following on the heels of the very successful Virginia-Highland marketing pieces that were produced for the businesses as late as 2006, there was a void when the business association failed to maintain itself through organization of its members. The business leaders who were a part of it realized how much time and effort it took to market the area and run their own businesses too. To The Trade Only offered to collect a small amount of money from each of the business owners, organize the group into a workable marketing plan and get the maps printed and distributed to over 76 hotels, B&B’s, the Georgia Department of Economic Development, CNN Center, Peachtree Center, The Atlanta History Center and other points of public distribution in addition to the businesses on the maps.

A Facebook page has been launched, and regular newsletters to the business community are being sent to keep them informed of news that would be relevant to them. The maps are made available to any kind of event for gift bags or just to hand out. This includes weddings, realtors with open houses, etc.

As a marketing piece for the neighborhood association, part of the value of it is to make potential buyers and owners aware that the area is not only a desirable place to live, it is rich with resources which make the area attractive to residents as well as tourists.

It is To The Trade Only’s hope to continue to work with the local residents and businesses in marketing the area to everyone’s benefit. They organized a trade out with Atlanta Intown Magazine and will be seeking out anyone else who has a vested interest in making the Highland Corridor successful on many different levels.

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