Duluth, Georgia

Duluth, Georgia
—  City  —
City of Duluth
The annual Duluth Fall Festival
Location in Gwinnett County and the state of Georgia
Coordinates: 34°0′11″N 84°8′44″W / 34.00306°N 84.14556°W / 34.00306; -84.14556Coordinates: 34°0′11″N 84°8′44″W / 34.00306°N 84.14556°W / 34.00306; -84.14556
Country United States
State Georgia
County Gwinnett
 - Total 10.0 sq mi (25.9 km2)
 - Land 9.9 sq mi (25.6 km2)
 - Water 0.1 sq mi (0.3 km2)
Elevation 1,096 ft (334 m)
Population (2009)
 - Total 26,688
 - Density 2,668.8/sq mi (957.7/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 - Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP codes 30026, 30029, 30095-30099
Area code(s) 470/678/770/404
FIPS code 13-24600[1]
GNIS feature ID 0331596[2]
Website duluthga.net

Duluth is a city in Gwinnett County, Georgia and an increasingly more affluent and developed suburb of Atlanta. Unincorporated portions of Forsyth County also have Duluth as a mailing address, though this area is outside city limits. Much of the adjacent city of Johns Creek (incorporated in 2006) uses one of the Duluth ZIP codes.

The population of Duluth was 26,668 at the 2010 census, making it the second most populous city in Gwinnett County, behind Lawrenceville.

Duluth is a suburb of Atlanta, close to Interstate 85. It is home to Gwinnett Place Mall, Gwinnett Civic and Cultural Center, Arena at Gwinnett Center, Hudgens Center for the Arts and Red Clay Theater. It is also home to Gwinnett Medical Center - Duluth, an 81-bed hospital constructed in 2006, as well as GMC's Glancy Campus, a 30-bed facility located near downtown. Nearby attractions include Stone Mountain and Lake Lanier. The agricultural manufacturer AGCO is based in Duluth.

According to Forbes magazine, Duluth ranks 26th in the nation in America's Best Places to Move.[3] It was also named the Best Affordable Suburb in Georgia by BusinessWeek magazine.[4]



The City of Duluth is governed by a mayor and five city council members, who together appoint the city administrator and city clerk. Elections are held every two years, in the odd numbered years, and the mayor and council members are elected for staggered four year terms.

The mayor of Duluth is Nancy Harris, the former principal of B.B. Harris Elementary School, and the city administrator is Phil McLemore.


Duluth's roots as a community stretch back to the early 19th century, when it was primarily forest land occupied by Cherokee Indians. An Indian trail, called Old Peachtree Road by the settlers, was extended through the area during the War of 1812 to connect Fort Peachtree in present day Atlanta with Fort Daniel near present day Lawrenceville. With the creation of Gwinnett County, Georgia in 1818, white settlement of the area accelerated.

The City of Duluth was named after Daniel Greysolon, Sieur du Lhut (1636–1710), a French captain and explorer. He negotiated and signed peace between the Saulters and the Sioux nation. It was named after him for his memory. Duluth was originally part of the Cherokee Indian territory.[5]

Duluth's forefather, cotton merchant Evan Howell, constructed a road connecting his cotton gin at the Chattahoochee River with Old Peachtree Road, creating Howell's Cross Roads. The settlement later became known as Howell's Crossing. Evan Howell was the grandfather of Atlanta Mayor Evan P. Howell and great grandfather of Atlanta Constitution publisher Clark Howell. His descendants continue to live in the area, but only Howell Ferry Rd. in Duluth bears the name.

Railroad era

The town was renamed Duluth in 1871 after Congress approved funding for a north-south railroad connecting it with the better known Duluth, Minnesota, which is in turn named for Daniel Greysolon, Sieur du Lhut. Evan Howell was on hand for the renaming ceremony. Duluth's founding fathers apparently chose the name after a satirical speech, "The Untold Delights of Duluth," given by Congressman J. Proctor Knott of Kentucky during the debate over the railroad bill.

The railroad was an enormous boost to the Duluth economy. A school house was built in 1871 on the site of what is now The Monarch School (formerly Duluth Middle School). The first Methodist church was organized in 1871, and the first Baptist congregation formed in 1886. Both churches continue today at new locations along State Route 120. The Bank of Duluth was charted in 1904, followed by the Farmers and Merchants Bank in 1911. Neither survived the Depression, but the Bank of Duluth was re-chartered in 1945 at its original location.

In 1922, Duluth elected Georgia's first female mayor, Alice Harrell Strickland. She donated 1-acre (4,000 m2) of land for a "community forest" and began efforts to conserve land for public recreation.

Post-war and modern era

Duluth grew rapidly in the 1970s and 1980s along with the rest of Gwinnett County. Georgia Governor George Busbee became a resident of Duluth in 1983 after leaving office, moving to the Sweet Bottom Plantation subdivision developed by Scott Hudgens. A major revitalization of the Duluth downtown area was undertaken in the early 21st century. Development along Sugarloaf Parkway has continued with construction of the Gwinnett Arena near the Gwinnett Convention Center.

In much of the 20th century, when Gwinnett County was still rural, Duluth was known in the area as being one of the few small towns with its own hospital, Joan Glancy Memorial Hospital. Consequently, many older residents of the area who call other towns home were actually born in Duluth. Joan Glancy was replaced with Gwinnett Medical Center - Duluth in 2006. The site of the old Joan Glancy hospital is now GMC's Glancy Campus, home to the Glancy Rehabilitation Center, the Duluth location of GMC's Diabetes & Nutrition Education Center and the Duluth location of GMC's Center for Sleep Disorders.

2005 incidents

The city made national headlines twice in 2005. In March, Fulton County Courthouse shooting suspect Brian Nichols was captured in a Duluth apartment after holding a woman hostage. In April, local resident Jennifer Wilbanks was reported missing a few days before her planned wedding to John Mason. She was found a few days later in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where she admitted to having lied about being kidnapped.


Duluth is located in the northeastern section of the Atlanta metropolitan area. Approximately 20 mi (32 km) from Downtown Atlanta, the city lies in the west-central section of Gwinnett County, bounded to the north by the Chattahoochee River (which also acts as the county line), northeast by Suwanee, south by unincorporated land, and west by Berkeley Lake.[6]


Similar to almost all of the Southeastern United States, Duluth experiences a humid subtropical climate (Köppen climate classification Cfa).

Climate data for Duluth
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 10.0
Average low °C (°F) −1.7
Precipitation mm (inches) 135.6
Source: [7]


Historical populations
Census Pop.
1960 1,483
1970 1,810 22.0%
1980 2,956 63.3%
1990 9,029 205.4%
2000 22,122 145.0%
2010 26,600 20.2%

As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 22,122 people, 8,735 households, and 5,642 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,512.3 people per square mile (969.5/km²). There were 9,061 housing units at an average density of 1,029.0 per square mile (397.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 68.65% White, 11.86% African American, 0.33% Native American, 12.89% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 3.83% from other races, and 2.41% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 9.05% of the population.

There were 8,735 households out of which 35.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.8% were married couples living together, 10.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.4% were non-families. 27.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 2.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.53 and the average family size was 3.10.

In age 18 and over, for every 100 females there were 94.5 males.


Personal income

The median income for a household in the city was $60,088, and the median income for a family was $69,437. Males had a median income of $46,683 versus $34,334 for females. The per capita income for the city was $29,185. About 3.0% of families and 4.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.8% of those under age 18 and 3.2% of those age 65 or over.


Duluth has an annual Fall Festival, held in a town center.


Duluth is a heavily car-dependent suburb with little to no public transportation available, with the exception of Gwinnett County Transit which has a station near Gwinnett Place Mall. A number of collector roads distribute traffic around both incorporated and unincorporated areas of the city, some of the most important being Buford Highway (US 23.svgGeorgia 13.svg), Duluth Highway (Georgia 120.svg), Sugarloaf Parkway, and Pleasant Hill Road. Apart from Buford Highway, these roads bring traffic to Interstate 85, connecting the Duluth to central Atlanta about 25 mi (40 km) away.

Sports and recreation

The Gwinnett Gladiators of the ECHL, a professional minor league ice hockey team, plays in the Arena at Gwinnett Center, which opened in 2003 in an unincorporated area of Gwinnett County (the arena has a Duluth zip code). At the Sugarloaf Country Club golf course, the AT&T Classic tournament was played until 2008. Unincorporated Gwinnett County is home to the Berkeley Hills Country Club, Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce, Partnership Gwinnett and the 1818 Club, a private dining club.


Primary and secondary schools

Gwinnett County Public Schools operates public schools serving residents of the city.

Elementary Schools

  • B.B. Harris Elementary (Duluth)
  • Berkeley Lake Elementary (Duluth)
  • Burnette Elementary (Peachtree Ridge) (Suwanee address) (opening 8/10)
  • Ferguson Elementary (Berkmar/Meadowcreek) (opening 8/10)
  • Chattahoochee Elementary (Duluth)
  • Charles Brant Chesney Elementary (Duluth)
  • M.H. Mason Elementary (Peachtree Ridge)
  • Parsons Elementary (Peachtree Ridge) (Suwanee address)

Middle Schools

  • Duluth Middle (Duluth)
  • Richard Hull Middle (Peachtree Ridge)
  • Louise Radloff Middle (Meadowcreek)

High Schools

Private Schools

  • Duluth Junior Academy (Duluth)
  • Duluth Montessori School (Duluth)
  • Notre Dame Catholic Academy (Duluth)

Public libraries

Gwinnett County Public Library operates the Duluth Branch in Duluth.[8]

Businesses in Duluth

NCR Corporation office building in Duluth.



External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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