27 Interesting Facts About Georgia

Last updated on October 7th, 2019

Georgia is the 8th most populous and the 24th most extensive of the 50 states of the United States. It is a state in the Southeastern United States. The state attained statehood on January 2, 1788, becoming the 4th state to join the union. It shares its border with five states (Alabama, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.)  Georgia (nicknamed: Empire State of the South, Peach State) has 159 counties. The state’s capital is Atlanta. The abbreviation for Georgia is GA. With these facts about Georgia, let us learn about its history, geography, people, economy, culture, and more. 

1. Georgia is the youngest of the 13 states that formed the United States originally.[1]

2. Georgia has more soil types than any other state.[1]

3. Georgia was the headquarters for the civil rights movement and home to Martin Luther King, Jr.[1]

georgia facts
Georgia (in red) on the U.S map with bordering states.

4. Did you know that a federal holiday was established in 1986 for every third Monday in January to be set aside in recognition of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. who was born in Atlanta, Georgia on Jan. 15, 1929?[8]

5. Did you know that the cotton gin was invented in Georgia by Eli Whitney in 1793? The cotton gin is a machine that is used to pull cotton fibers from the cotton seed. The machine helped ease of the burden from the workers by making the task much simpler and efficient.[2]

6. Georgia is the largest of the U.S. states east of the Mississippi River.[3]

7. Georgia is named after George II, who was king of Britain when Europeans first settled there in 1733.[3]

8. Georgia outranks other states in the production of Vidalia onions – known as the sweetest onions in the world. The state is also the topmost producer of peanuts, pecans, and peaches.[3]

9. Interestingly, Coca-Cola, the favorite drink of billions of people across the globe, was also invented in Atlanta, Georgia.[3]

Flag of Georgia

Flag of Georgia (U.S. state)
Flag of Georgia. Image credit – Wikipedia.org

10. Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) is the world’s largest airport in terms of the total number of passengers it handles every year.[4]

11. Did you know that the 1996 Summer Olympics were held in Atlanta, Georgia? The games held in Atlanta are also referred to as the Centennial Olympic Games, as they marked the centenary of the 1896 Summer Olympics in Athens. Moreover, these Games were the fourth Summer Olympics to be hosted by the United States.[5,6]

12. Georgia is rich in marble. The marble from the state was used to build the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., and the capitols of many states.[7]

13. Georgia has had five capitals. 1. Savannah (1777-1785), 2. Augusta (1786-1789), 3. Louisville (1789-1807), 4. Milledgeville (1807-1867), 5. Atlanta (1868-present.)[8]

14. Atlanta, the capital city of the state, played a key role in the overall progress and development of the state.[1]

15. Behind Texas (254), Georgia has the second most counties in the United States with 159.

16. In May 2019, Georgia Republican Gov. Brian Kemp signed HB 481, the most extreme abortion ban in the country. The law illegalizes abortion after about six weeks (so-called heartbeat bill, it outlaws abortion after a fetal heartbeat is detectable.) The law also takes into account the termination of pregnancies by the women. The law will take effect in 2020 and at present, there is strong opposition from the public.[9,14]

17. You could fit Georgia into Alaska 11 times![10]

Georgia on the map

18. Named after Nancy Hart, Hart County is the only county in Georgia named after a woman.[21]

19. Did you know that before becoming the 39th president of the United States, Jimmy Carter was a peanut farmer? He was also awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002. He was born on October 1, 1924, in Plains, Georgia.[11]

20. The peanut state has plenty of peanut statues erected throughout the state. You could find one in Ashburn and another in Plains. The one in Plains is 13 feet tall and was made for a 1976 political visit to Evansville by Jimmy Carter.[12,13] 

Georgia peanut statue from Ashburn
Peanut statue in Ashburn, Georgia. Image credit – Tom Gil

21. When Georgia was founded in 1772, it included much of the present-day Alabama and Mississippi.[1]

22. Fort Benning, considered, one of the best army installations in the world, is located in Columbus, Georgia. It is named after Henry L. Benning, a brigadier general in the Confederate States Army during the Civil War.[16]

23. Hosted in Atlanta, Georgia, the International Production & Processing Expo is the world’s largest annual poultry, meat and feed industry event of its kind.[17]

24. The Georgia Aquarium in downtown Atlanta is one of the world’s largest aquarium. The aquarium holds more than 10 million US gallons of marine and salt water, and it houses more than a hundred thousand animals. Some of the species available in the aquarium include Whale shark, Beluga whale, California sea lions, African penguins, etc.[18]

25. The world’s longest urban whitewater rafting course–WhiteWater Express–is in Columbus, GA.[19]

26. According to stateofobesity.org, Georgia has the 24th highest adult obesity rate in the nation, and the 18th highest obesity rate for youth ages 10 to 17.[20]

27. There are about 4 dozen varieties of peaches from Georgia. Peaches contain vitamins, fiber, and potassium.[15]

Georgia state – quick facts and state symbols

State AbbreviationGA
Table Last UpdatedMay 16, 2019
State CapitalAtlanta
List Of 50 U.S. States And Their Capital
State SizeTotal (Land + Water): 59,425 sq miles; Land Only: 57,906 sq miles
(Estimate July 1, 2018 from United States Census Bureau)
StatehoodJanuary 2, 1788
State rank by population8th
State rank by date of formation4th
State rank by area24th
Number of Counties159
Complete list of 50 states and number of counties in each
Bordering StatesAlabama, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee
Official LanguageEnglish
Highest PointBrasstown Bald
4,784 ft (1,458 m)
Lowest pointAtlantic Ocean
Sea level
Mean elevation600 feet above sea level
Length 298 miles (480 km)
Width230 miles (370 km)
GovernorBrian Kemp (R)
Lieutenant GovernorGeoff Duncan (R)
Electoral Votes16
State MottoWisdom, justice, and moderation
State NicknamePeach State;
Empire State of the South
% Water2.6
Nobel Prize WinnersMartin Luther King Jr. (Peace, 1964)
Jimmy Carter (Peace, 2002)
Famous PeopleRichard Dent (Pro Football Player)
Frank Thomas (Baseball Player)
Teresa Edwards (Basketball Player)
Julia Roberts (Actress)
Kanye West (Singer)
U.S. President Born in Georgia1. James Earl Carter Jr.
State Song Georgia on My Mind
State FlagThe Flag of Georgia

Flag of Georgia (U.S. state).svg

State sealGreat Seal of Georgia

Seal of Georgia.svg

State Coat of ArmsGeorgia Coat of Arms

Coat of arms of the State of Georgia (1876).png

State QuarterGeorgia Quarter

Georgia quarter

FossilShark tooth

Carcharodon megalodon fossil shark tooth (Miocene; Lee Creek Phosphate Mine, Aurora, North Carolina, USA)
State Dog
Adoptable Dog

State AmphibianGreen tree frog

American Green Tree Frog

State InsectHoneybee

Apis mellifera flying.jpg

State FlowerCherokee rose

Cherokee rose.jpg

State WildflowerAzalea


State BirdBrown thrasher

Toxostoma rufum -Garland, Texas, USA-8.jpg

State Game BirdBobwhite quail

Virginiawachtel 2007-06-16 065.jpg

State ReptileGopher tortoise

Gopher Tortoise - Gopherus polyphemus, Lake June-in-Winter Scrub State Park, Lake Placid, Florida - 31527638716.jpg

State GemQuartz

Quartz, Tibet.jpg

State TreeLive Oak

FL Volusia Oak03.jpg

State FruitPeach

Illustration Prunus persica0.jpg

State CropPeanut

Arachis hypogaea - Köhler–s Medizinal-Pflanzen-163.jpg

State FishLargemouth bass


State MineralStaurolite


State Marine MammalRight whale

Eubalaena glacialis with calf.jpg

State VegetableVidalia onion

Vidalia Onions.jpg

State Butterfly Eastern tiger swallowtail

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail Papilio glaucus Wings 2908px.jpg

Longitude80.840 – 85.605° W
Latitude30.356 – 34.985° N
Time ZoneEastern Time Zone
Area Codes229, 404, 470, 478, 678, 706, 762, 770, 912