"Gone with the Wind" Walk, Atlanta

"Gone with the Wind" Walk (Self Guided), Atlanta

Follow in the footsteps of the Pulitzer-Prize winning author of one of America's all-time classic novels, Gone With the Wind. See sites related to the life of Margaret Mitchell including the apartment where she wrote the novel and her final resting place. ***PH***
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"Gone with the Wind" Walk Map

Guide Name: "Gone with the Wind" Walk
Guide Location: USA » Atlanta (See other walking tours in Atlanta)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 4
Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.0 Km or 3.1 Miles
Author: doris
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Margaret Mitchell House and Museum
  • Georgian Terrace Hotel
  • Margaret Mitchell Collection at Atlanta Central Library
  • Historic Oakland Cemetery
1
Margaret Mitchell House and Museum

1) Margaret Mitchell House and Museum

One could honestly stay in the Margaret Mitchell House for hours given the amount of experience, information, and context provided. From seeing what Atlanta was like back in the 1920s to insights into Margaret Mitchell's entire life; the hype around the casting and making of the "Gone With the Wind" movie – you will find it all here!

The "house" part itself is really just the first-floor apartment where Margaret and her husband lived (they did not actually occupy the whole space), which was recreated with 1930s decor. Although the artifacts were not owned by Margaret, the look and feel bring observers into the aesthetic of where she penned her famous novel. Midtown Atlanta might not have been the best area back then, hence she referred to the apartment as "The Dump", but you'll likely find it to be pleasant.

If you have time, be sure to head into the separate building across the backyard (covered in the price of admission) to watch part of the documentary on how the GWTW film was made, including the original casting footage with various Hollywood stars at the time. Another interesting section, packed with pictures, news reels, and newspaper articles, documents what it was like during the movie's 1939 premiere in Atlanta.

All in all, if you at all enjoy the "Gone With the Wind" book or film, then you should check this nice little gem out!

Tip:
Admission to the Atlanta History Center also includes tickets to the Margaret Mitchell House which you can use at any point during in the next 9 days. The visit to the house itself is greatly enhanced by a tour with a docent, which does not cost extra but is not always offered, so call ahead to make sure you can get on it. There are several exhibits inside house as well as a two-hour film on the making of "Gone with the Wind" in an attached building, so give yourself enough time.

Opening Hours:
Mon-Sat: 11am–4pm; Sun: 1–4pm
2
Georgian Terrace Hotel

2) Georgian Terrace Hotel

The Georgian Terrace Hotel in Midtown Atlanta, part of the Fox Theatre Historic District, was designed by architect William Lee Stoddart in a Beaux-Arts style that was intended to evoke the architecture of Paris. The Georgian Terrace is a member of Historic Hotels of America, the official program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

On December 15, 1939, the Georgian Terrace Hotel's Grand Ballroom was the site of the Gone with the Wind Gala, whose attendees included Clark Gable, Carole Lombard, Vivien Leigh, Laurence Olivier, Olivia de Havilland, Claudette Colbert, Victor Fleming, Louis B. Mayer, David O. Selznick, Margaret Mitchell, and several other notable guests.

The premiere of Gone with the Wind was in Atlanta in 1939. All of the stars and the Director of the movie (with the exception of Vivien Leigh and her lover at the time, Lawrence Olivier) stayed at the Georgian Terrace. The pre-premiere party was held at the hotel.

Contrary to popular belief, the premier showing of Gone With the Wind was not held at the Fox Theatre, but rather at Loew's Grand Theatre in downtown Atlanta. After the movie was screened there, its stars were ushered to the Georgian Terrace via a motorcade through a parade route on Peachtree Street.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
3
Margaret Mitchell Collection at Atlanta Central Library

3) Margaret Mitchell Collection at Atlanta Central Library

The Central Library in Downtown Atlanta serves as the headquarters of the library system. Completed in 1980, it was the last building to be designed by Bauhaus-movement architect Marcel Breuer. The building, designed in the brutalist architectural style, is considered a "masterpiece" by architectural experts.

***PH***

The Margaret Mitchell Collection is housed in the Special Collections Department. The collection was donated to the library, in keeping with Margaret Mitchell’s wishes, as part of a bequest outlined in the will of her second husband, John Marsh.

This collection includes numerous items received from the Mitchell family via the terms of the will of Mr. John Marsh. This is a static collection and nothing may be removed or added to this collection (per the terms of the will). This collection includes the typewriter used to write Gone With the Wind, Margaret’s Pulitzer Prize, her American Book Award, photos, her personal collection of books, various important editions of Gone With the Wind and other pieces of ephemera and books.

On August 11, 1949, Margaret was struck by an automobile while she and John were on their way to see a movie. She died five days later, on August 16. Margaret Mitchell is buried in Atlanta's Oakland Cemetery. The week after her death, the staff of the Atlanta Public Library established a small memorial collection in honor of the author. John Marsh's bequest made a true memorial possible. As her brother Stephens wrote: "The estate feels it is very important to keep these materials together for the public to see.” These days people from around the world visit the Special Collections Department of the Central Library to see her typewriter, library card, awards, book collections and memorabilia.
***PH***
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
4
Historic Oakland Cemetery

4) Historic Oakland Cemetery

Oakland Cemetery is an excellent example of a Victorian-style cemetery and reflects the "garden cemetery" movement started and exemplified by Mount Auburn Cemetery in Massachusetts. The original 6 acres (24,000 m2) of Oakland remains one of the oldest historical plots of land in Atlanta, most of the rest of the city having been burned in 1864. Because of its age and location, the cemetery directly reflects the history and changing culture of the City of Atlanta and the significant events it has seen. Names of Atlanta streets, buildings, parks, subdivisions, and more can be found within the cemetery gates. An estimated 70,000 people are interred at Oakland, and while the last plots were sold in 1884, there are still regular burials today.

Among the many important personalities buried here are golfing legend Bobby Jones, Georgia governors and Margaret Mitchell Marsh, author of Gone with the Wind. In Margaret Mitchell's novel, Gone With The Wind, Oakland Cemetery is mentioned as the final resting place of Scarlett O'Hara's first husband, Charles Hamilton, and as the burial place of many Confederate soldiers who died during the Civil War.

The cemetery has an enchanting view of Downtown Atlanta and you can find a number of restaurants down the street.

Why You Should Visit:
One of the most interesting places to see in Atlanta, full of history and beauty and secrets and stories across its many sections.
Tours are inexpensive and led by intelligent guides who engage people in conversation, and give facts about the many people buried here.
The space itself is massive with many walking trails and lots of stately trees which cast a lot of shade throughout the property.

Tip:
Stop by the Visitor Center when you first arrive to get a few bottles of water and to find out about the guided and/or audio tour if you're so inclined.
The 'Capturing the Spirit of Oakland' Halloween tours occur over two weekends near the end of October and are sold out quickly each year.

Mon-Sat: 9am-5pm; Sat: 9am-8pm

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