DeKalb County, Georgia

DeKalb County, Georgia
DeKalb County, Georgia
DeKalb County, Georgia Court House.JPG
Old DeKalb County courthouse in Decatur
Seal of DeKalb County, Georgia
Map of Georgia highlighting DeKalb County
Location in the state of Georgia
Map of the U.S. highlighting Georgia
Georgia's location in the U.S.
Founded 1822
Seat Decatur
Largest city Atlanta (part)
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

270.91 sq mi (702 km²)
268.21 sq mi (695 km²)
2.70 sq mi (7 km²), 1.00%
 - (2010)
 - Density

2,553/sq mi (985.6/km²)
Congressional districts 4th, 5th, 6th

DeKalb County (pronounced /dɨˈkæb/ "dee-KAB") is a county located in the U.S. state of Georgia. The population of the county was 691,893 at the 2010 census.[1] Its county seat is the city of Decatur.[2] It is bordered to the west by Fulton County and contains roughly 10% of the city of Atlanta. (The other 90% lies in Fulton County).

DeKalb County is included in the five-county core of the Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, Georgia, metropolitan statistical area. It is the third-most-populated county in the Atlanta area and the state, just behind Gwinnett County (although DeKalb County was historically ranked second behind Fulton County before the 2010 Census), and is the most diverse county in Georgia. DeKalb is primarily a suburban county, and is the second-most-affluent county with an African-American majority in the United States, behind Prince George's County, Maryland, in suburban Washington D.C.

In 2009, DeKalb earned the Atlanta Regional Commission's "Green Communities" designation for its efforts in conserving energy, water and fuel; investing in renewable energy; reducing waste; and protecting and restoring natural resources.



DeKalb County was created in 1822 from Henry, Gwinnett and Fayette counties. It was named for Baron Johann de Kalb, a German soldier who fought on the side of the Americans in the American Revolutionary War.

In 1853, Fulton County was formed from the western half of DeKalb, divided along a perfectly straight and due north/south line down the middle (along which Moreland Avenue now runs). Until this time, the growing city of Atlanta had been inside DeKalb. Atlanta grew because the city of Decatur did not want to become the railroad terminus in the 1830s, thus a spot at the Thrasherville encampment in western DeKalb was picked to become Terminus and then Marthasville, before becoming Atlanta a few years after its founding. North and southwest Fulton came from two other counties: Milton and southeast Campbell, respectively. DeKalb once extended slightly further north to the Chattahoochee River, but this strip was later given to Milton, and is now the panhandle of Sandy Springs (though residents there identify with Dunwoody).

During the Civil War, much of the Battle of Atlanta was fought in DeKalb.

Until the 1960s, DeKalb was a mainly agricultural county, but as the sprawl of the metropolitan Atlanta region expanded, DeKalb became increasingly urbanized. Finished in 1969, the eastern half of the Interstate 285 beltway, called "the Perimeter", ringed the northeastern and southern edges of the county, placing most of it "inside the Perimeter" along with nearly all of Atlanta. Interstate 675 and Georgia 400 were originally planned to be connected inside the Perimeter, along with the Stone Mountain Freeway (U.S. Highway 78) connecting with the Downtown Connector (a co-signment of I-75/I-85) near Moreland Avenue, destroying many neighborhoods in western DeKalb, but community opposition in the early 1970s spared them this fate of urbanization, although part of the proposed Stone Mountain Tollway later became the Freedom Parkway. Only Interstate 20 and Interstate 85 were successfully built through the county. DeKalb also became one of only two counties to approve MARTA rapid transit in the 1970s; the county now contains the east and northeast heavy rail lines.

Law and government

Presidential elections results in DeKalb County[3]
Year Democratic Republican Others
2008 78.86% 254,594 20.31% 65,581 0.86% 2,671
2004 72.61% 200,787 26.61% 73,570 0.77% 2,152
2000 70.24% 154,509 26.73% 58,807 3.03% 6,664
1996 66.5% 137,903 29.1% 60,255 4.4% 9,071
1992 57.8% 124,559 32.6% 70,282 9.6% 20,594
1988 50.2% 92,521 48.9% 90,179 10.8% 1,550
1984 42.5% 77,329 57.5% 104,697 0.0% 0
1980 49.4% 82,743 44.7% 74,904 5.8% 9,758
1976 56.4% 86,872 43.6% 67,160 0.0% 0
1972 22.6% 30,671 77.4% 104,750 0.0% 0
1968 26.7% 27,796 50.4% 52,485 23.0% 23,956
1964 42.9% 37,154 57.1% 49,448 0.0% 11
1960 50.1% 24,116 49.9% 24,046 0.0% 0

In 1986, DeKalb's delegation in the Georgia General Assembly created a unique chief executive officer (CEO) position, which is the chief elected official.[4] The local legislation that authorized the position made it unique among Georgia's 159 counties, all of which have a standard county commission or a few still with a sole commissioner. As a result of this legislation, all county employees report to the CEO rather than to commissioners for day-to-day operations. Then, the CEO served as the chairman of the seven-member county commission, but did not vote except to break a tie. In 2008, the Georgia General Assembly amended the act to allow the DeKalb County Board of the Commissioners the authority to preside over meetings of the county commission and to set the agenda for meetings of the county commission. The CEO votes on matters of the commission in the case of a tie.[citation needed]

As of 2009, DeKalb's CEO is Democrat Burrell Ellis,[5] who succeeded fellow Democrat Vernon Jones.The commission is elected from five small districts and two super-districts that each make up half of the county and overlap the smaller districts.

Under the redistricting plan in effect for the 2006, 2008, and 2010 elections for the United States House of Representatives, DeKalb is the only county in the state to be split among four congressional districts. Geographically, most of DeKalb is contained within the 4th District, while western portions of the county are in the 5th District, northern portions are in the 6th District, and the southwestern corner is in the 13th District.[citation needed]

Public safety

Unincorporated DeKalb County is policed by the DeKalb County Police Department.

Fire and medical services are provided throughout the county by DeKalb County Fire and Rescue.


According to the 2000 census, the county has a total area of 270.91 square miles (701.7 km2), of which 268.21 square miles (694.7 km2) (or 99.00%) is land and 2.70 square miles (7.0 km2) (or 1.00%) is water.[6]

The county is crossed by the South River and numerous creeks, including Nancy Creek, Snapfinger Creek and two forks of Peachtree Creek. Peachtree Creek and Nancy Creek drain into the Chattahoochee River and eventually to the Gulf of Mexico. South River drains into the Ocmulgee River and ultimately into the Atlantic Ocean.

Stone Mountain lies near the eastern border of the county. Soapstone Ridge, parallel to the southern border, was heavily quarried between 1400 and 100 B.C. and objects made from the soapstone have been found as far away as the Great Lakes.

Adjacent counties


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention headquarters in the Druid Hills CDP as seen from Emory University

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is based in the Druid Hills CDP in an unincorporated area in the county.[7][8]

The Metro State Prison of the Georgia Department of Corrections is located in an unincorporated area in DeKalb County.[9] Female death row inmates (UDS, "under death sentence") reside in the Metro State Prison.[10]


Cox Communications is headquartered at 1400 Lake Hearn Drive in Dunwoody GA DeKalb County.[11] It is the third-largest cable television service provider in the United States.[12] Kroger operates its Atlanta-area offices at 2175 Parklake Drive, NE in DeKalb County.[13]

Diplomatic missions

The Consulate-General of Mexico in Atlanta is located in the North Druid Hills CDP.[14][15] The Consulate-General of Guatemala in Atlanta is located in the North Atlanta CDP.[16][17] The Consulate-General of Peru in Atlanta is located in an unincorporated section of DeKalb County.[18]


Historical populations
Census Pop.
1830 10,042
1840 10,467 4.2%
1850 14,328 36.9%
1860 7,806 −45.5%
1870 10,014 28.3%
1880 14,497 44.8%
1890 17,189 18.6%
1900 21,112 22.8%
1910 27,881 32.1%
1920 44,051 58.0%
1930 70,278 59.5%
1940 86,942 23.7%
1950 136,395 56.9%
1960 256,782 88.3%
1970 415,387 61.8%
1980 483,024 16.3%
1990 545,837 13.0%
2000 665,865 22.0%
2010 691,893 3.9%

As of 2010 the population of DeKalbCounty was 691,893. The racial and ethnic makeup of the population was 54.3% black or African American (53.6% non-Hispanic black), 33.3% white, 0.4% Native American, 1.5% Asian Indian, 3.6% other Asian, 4.5% reporting some other race, 2.4% reporting two or more races and 9.8% Hispanic or Latino of any race.[19]

As of the census[20] of 2000, there were 665,865 people, 249,339 households, and 156,584 families residing in the county. The population density was 2,483 people per square mile (959/km²). There were 261,231 housing units at an average density of 974 per square mile (376/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 54.23% Black or African American, 35.82% White, 0.23% Native American, 4.01% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 3.53% from other races, and 2.12% from two or more races. 7.89% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 249,339 households out of which 31.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 40.10% were married couples living together, 17.60% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.20% were non-families. 26.90% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.20% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.62 and the average family size was 3.20.

In the county the population was spread out with 24.60% under the age of 18, 10.90% from 18 to 24, 36.70% from 25 to 44, 19.70% from 45 to 64, and 8.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 94.10 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.80 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $49,117, and the median income for a family was $54,018. Males had a median income of $36,270 versus $31,653 for females. The per capita income for the county was $23,968. About 7.80% of families and 10.80% of the population were below the poverty line, including 14.10% of those under age 18 and 8.70% of those age 65 or over.

Although Fulton County is more populous, DeKalb has the highest population density of any county in the Atlanta metropolitan area.

Cities and communities


Census-designated places

Other communities


Major highways

Secondary highways


Primary and secondary education

Public schools

The portion of DeKalb County not within the city of Atlanta or the city of Decatur is served by DeKalb County School System. The Atlanta portion is served by Atlanta Public Schools. The Decatur portion is served by Decatur City School District.

Private schools

Private schools in DeKalb County include:

Higher education

Agnes Scott College is a private, all female, undergraduate liberal arts college.

Emory University is a private, coeducational, liberal arts university. It is a member of the Association of American Universities, an association of leading research universities in the US and Canada. The university consists of the following divisions: Emory College of Arts and Science, Graduate School, Candler School of Theology, Goizueta Business School, Emory University School of Law, Rollins School of Public Health, and the Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing.

Mercer University is a private, coeducational, faith-based university with a Baptist heritage. The main campus is in Macon. The Cecil B. Day Graduate and Professional Campus is in DeKalb County; it houses the College of Nursing, the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, and the James and Carolyn McAfee School of Theology along with programs of the Eugene W. Stetson School of Business and Economics, the School of Medicine, and the Tift College of Education.

Oglethorpe University is a private, coeducational, liberal arts school and is named after James Oglethorpe, founder of the Georgia Colony.

Georgia Perimeter College (formerly DeKalb College) has three campuses within the county and offers two-year associate degrees.

Dekalb Tech is the largest vocational institution in Georgia. Dekalb Tech trains students in business, engineering, technologies, health, human services, industrial arts, information systems, and transportation.

DeVry University offers Bachleors and Masters Degrees in Healthcare, Accounting, Business, and Management Technology.

Columbia Theological Seminary, a theological institution of the Presbyterian Church. More than 640 students are enrolled at Columbia in one of five degree programs: Master of Divinity, Master of Arts in Theological Studies, Master of Theology, Doctor of Ministry, and Doctor of Theology.

Public libraries

The DeKalb County Public Library has 22 branches throughout the county, with three additional branches planned by 2010.

See also

Portal icon State of Georgia portal
Portal icon Atlanta portal


  • DeKalb Historical Society. Vanishing DeKalb: A Pictoral History. Decatur, Ga.: DeKalb Historical Society, 1985. ISBN 0-9615459-0-9
  • Mason, Herman. "Skip" Jr. African-American Life in DeKalb County, 1821–1970. Charleston, S.C.: Arcadia Publishing, 1998. ISBN 0-7385-0034-8
  • Owens, Sue Ellen, and Megan Milford. DeKalb County in Vintage Postcards. Charleston, S.C.: Arcadia Publishing, 2001. ISBN 0-7385-1401-2
  • Price, Vivian. The History of DeKalb County, Georgia, 1822–1900. Fernandina Beach, Fla.: Wolfe Publishing Company, 1997. ISBN 1-883793-27-0


  1. ^ U.S. Census Bureau American Factfinder
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections.
  4. ^ [1] DeKalb County Organizational Act
  5. ^ [2] DeKalb County Web site
  6. ^ "Census 2000 U.S. Gazetteer Files: Counties". United States Census. Retrieved 2011-02-13. 
  7. ^ Home Page. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved on November 19, 2008.
  8. ^ "Druid Hills CDP, GA." United States Census Bureau. Retrieved on May 5, 2009.
  9. ^ "Metro State Prison." Georgia Department of Corrections. Retrieved on July 18, 2010.
  10. ^ "Inmates Under Death Sentence January 1, 2010 Changes to UDS Population During 2009." Georgia Department of Corrections. 3/7. Retrieved on July 18, 2010.
  11. ^ "Atlanta Headquarters." Cox Communications. Retrieved on April 22, 2009.
  12. ^ "About Cox". Cox Communications, Inc. Retrieved 2007-08-22. 
  13. ^ "Contact Us." Kroger. Retrieved on April 30, 2009.
  14. ^ "North Druid Hills CDP, GA." United States Census Bureau. Retrieved on May 5, 2009.
  15. ^ Home Page." Consulate-General of Mexico in Atlanta. Accessed October 26, 2008.
  16. ^ "Consulates." Georgia Department of Economic Development. Accessed October 26, 2008.
  17. ^ "North Atlanta CDP, GA." United States Census Bureau. Retrieved on May 5, 2009.
  18. ^ "Atlanta." Consulado General del Peru. Accessed October 26, 2008.
  19. ^ 2010 general population and housing report for DeKalb County from the US Census
  20. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  21. ^ "Contact Us." Mohammed Schools. Retrieved on September 28, 2011. "735 Fayetteville Road, Atlanta, Georgia 30316"

External links

Coordinates: 33°46′N 84°14′W / 33.77°N 84.23°W / 33.77; -84.23

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • DeKalb County (Georgia) — DeKalb County Courthouse in Decatur, gelistet im NRHP Nr. 71001016[1] Verwaltung US …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Lakeside High School (DeKalb County, Georgia) — Infobox Secondary school name = Lakeside High School picture = established = 1965 type = Public secondary grades = 9–12 city = DeKalb County (Atlanta address) state = Georgia country = USA enrollment = 1,612 campus = Suburban mascot = Vikings… …   Wikipedia

  • National Register of Historic Places listings in DeKalb County, Georgia — This is a list of properties and districts in DeKalb County, Georgia that are listed on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP). Map of all coordinates from Google Map of all coordinates from Bing …   Wikipedia

  • St. Pius X Catholic High School (DeKalb County, Georgia) — St. Pius X Catholic High School is an Archdiocesan Roman Catholic high school in unincorporated DeKalb County, Georgia, United States, near the city of Atlanta. The school is located right off I 85 s Exit 93 (Shallowford Road). The school was… …   Wikipedia

  • Pittsburg, DeKalb County, Georgia — Pittsburg is an unincorporated place in DeKalb County, Georgia, United States. It was named after the industrial heritage of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It has a Latitude of 33.88056 and a Longitude of 84.21944, with an elevation of 1060 feet.… …   Wikipedia

  • Briarcliff High School (DeKalb County, Georgia) — Briarcliff High School was a public high school opened by the DeKalb County School System in 1959 at 2415 North Druid Hills Road, Atlanta, Georgia 30329. The school colors are silver and blue, and the school mascot is the Baron. The DeKalb County …   Wikipedia

  • DeKalb County Police Department — Agency overview Formed 1915 Legal personality Governmental: Government agency Jurisdictional structure …   Wikipedia

  • DeKalb County School System — Bambi Type and location Type Suburban Public Grades PK 12 …   Wikipedia

  • DeKalb County, Illinois — Seal …   Wikipedia

  • DeKalb County — could mean: Counties in the United States of America DeKalb County, Alabama DeKalb County, Georgia DeKalb County, Illinois DeKalb County, Indiana DeKalb County, Missouri DeKalb County, Tennessee Other USS DeKalb County (LST 715), a twice… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”