Georgia is the birthplace of many a famed name. It has seen many eminent personalities rise to fame. Read on for some of the very famous people from Georgia.
Georgia, a state east of the Mississippi river, the largest one in terms of land area and the 24th largest state in the United States, has produced a large number of talented people who became world-famous for their exceptional careers, notable contributions to their fields, or for their noteworthy work.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Born on January 15, 1929 in Atlanta, Georgia, Martin Luther King, Jr. became one of the most important figures in the American Civil Rights Movement. He headed the Montgomery Bus Boycott and contributed to the formation of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. His very famous speech, ‘I Have A Dream’ was testimony to his oratory skills. He won the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1964, making him the youngest person receiving it. Throughout life, he stood against racial discrimination and sought to bring about the establishment of human rights in society. His assassination on April 4, 1968, meant the loss of a great human being.
Born on October 1, 1924 in Plains, Georgia, Carter was a gifted student who loved reading and had a flair for basketball. He was a student of the Georgia Tech and the Georgia Southwestern University after which he joined the United States Naval Academy to earn a bachelor’s degree in science. He was the 76th Governor of Georgia and served two terms in the Georgia Senate from the fourteenth district of Georgia. He served as the President of the United States from 1977 to 1981. During his tenure, he contributed to the establishment of the Department of Energy and the Department of Education. He developed a national energy policy that focused on the price decontrol, conservation and technological reforms. He was instrumental in the Peace Treaty between Egypt and Israel. He is the second-oldest living former President of the United States. He is the proud winner of the Nobel Prize for Peace of 2002. Jimmy Carter is one of the most prominent figures on the political scenario of the world.
Born in Cedartown, Georgia in 1905, Sterling Holloway grew up to become a character actor appearing in numerous films and television shows. He was a student of the Georgia Military Academy in College Park after which he attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York. In 1926, Holloway entered Hollywood to pursue a career in movies. He soon started working as a voice actor and was famed for his voice in the first animated film of the Walt Disney Studio, Dumbo. Holloway lent his voice to many characters in several Walt Disney films. He died on November 22, 1992 but continues to live through the characters he gave his unique voice to.
Margaret Mitchell, the author of the very famous novel, Gone with the Wind, was born in Georgia on November 8, 1900. She graduated from the Washington Seminary and then attended Smith College. Her mother’s death in 1918 compelled her to return to Atlanta after her final exams. Between 1922 and 1926, she wrote several articles, interviews, book reviews and profiles of some Civil War generals. Interestingly, she kept the writings of her novel, Gone with the Wind, in secrecy from her friends. She wrote the last chapter first and often switched between chapters. Her novel is one of the most popular books of all time. She was honored with the Pulitzer Prize for this book. Her death in 1949 meant the loss of a great American authoress.
Born on November 5, 1958, in Marietta, Georgia, Robert Patrick spent his childhood in Bay Village in Ohio. The role that was a milestone in his acting career was the one he played in Terminator 2: Judgment Day. He played T-1000 starring opposite Arnold Schwarzenegger in that film. He made a mark on the small screen, acting in various television shows. He is a proud winner of the Saturn Award. Some of his other well-known performances include his roles in Walk in the Line, The Unit, Die Hard 2, Spy Kids, and many more.
Born on December 18, 1886, in Georgia, he was an American Major League Baseball outfielder. Initially, he played for local teams, then for Augusta Tourists of the South Atlantic League, then for Anniston Steelers, and again for the Tourists, from where he was sold to the American League’s Detroit Tigers. In 1906, as a center fielder for the Tigers, Cobb set a record of the highest batting average. In 1907, he became a shareholder and celebrity spokesman for the Coca-Cola Company. 1911 was a brilliant year for Cobb, career-wise. Quite unpopular with the teammates but a favorite of the coaches, Cobb was a player of skill and strategy. Many times during his career, he met with controversy. His temperament and violent behavior earned him more rivals than friends. He died in July 1961. He is regarded as one of the greatest baseball players ever and the best player of the dead-ball era.
Richard Wayne Penniman
More commonly known by his stage name, Little Richard, he is an American singer and songwriter. Born on December 5, 1932, in Georgia, he went on to become one of the most respected figures in popular music. He has played a major role in creating and popularizing music genres like rock and roll, funk, and soul. Since an early age, he had an inclination towards music. He began his career in music with the recordings of two gospels. Many recordings of his were a success. His first album Here’s Little Richard garnered popularity. He soon became a known name in the music industry. His works made him a millionaire and also earned him a large following. He is the winner of the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award of 1990. Many of his recordings made it to the Grammy Hall of Fame and featured on lists of the greatest and most popular songs of the time. He was inducted to the Georgia Music Hall of Fame in 1984.
Known for her performances in Erin Brockovich (for which she won an Academy Award), My Best Friend’s Wedding, Eat, Pray, Love, Mirror Mirror, and Steel Magnolias, Pretty Woman, and August: Osage County for which she received Academy Award nominations, Julia Roberts is one of the most famous actresses of the time. Born on October 28, 1967, she was raised a Catholic. Both her parents belonged to the acting field. After finishing school, she moved to New York to pursue an acting career. Starting with the 1988-movie Satisfaction, she went on to make it big in the film industry and is recognized as one of the best and most popular actresses today. She is the winner of two Golden Globes and an Academy Award for Best Actress.
Born on March 20, 1958 in Georgia, Holly Hunter is an American actress best known for her Academy Award-winning role in The Piano. After pursuing a degree course in drama from Carnegie Mellon University of Pittsburgh, and after a brief career with the City Theatre, she moved to New York. With the 1981-film The Burning, her career in movies and television began. Her film The Piano succeeded both critically and commercially. It earned her the BAFTA, the Golden Globe, and the Academy Award. She has won Emmy Awards for her performances in Roe vs. Wade and The Positively True Adventures of the Alleged Texas Cheerleader-Murdering Mom in the category of Outstanding Lead Actress – Miniseries or a Movie.
Born on August 11, 1953 in Georgia, his real name is Terry Gene Bollea. He is a six-time WWF (now WWE) champion and a six-time WCW World Heavyweight Champion. As a child, he played baseball. During teenage, he developed a liking for wrestling. He was inspired by the American professional wrestler Dusty Rhodes. Hogan was a good musician. He dropped out of college to pursue music and started a band with two local musicians. His efforts towards becoming a wrestler were still on. His professional wrestling career began in 1977. His popularity peaked during the 1980s and the ’90s. He has been inducted to the WWE Hall of Fame.
Though not ‘from’ Georgia, his name needs a mention here, as he was the founder of Georgia. He was a British General, Member of Parliament, and a social reformer. He was born on December 22, 1696. Oglethorpe’s idea was to have a province for the English debtors to settle. Georgia was designed to be a state that would defend the British colonies in the South. Strict laws such as ban on alcohol, ban on slavery, a system of smallholdings as opposed to large plantation ownerships, were imposed in Georgia. It was the last of the 13 colonies, the corporate charter of which, was given to General Oglethorpe on April 21, 1732. Oglethorpe served as the first governor of Georgia and served the term from 1732 to 1743. He died on June 30, 1785.
While the list above has presented information about some of the most famed personalities of Georgia, many are still unnamed. The names here, were only a glimpse of the talent that this state hosts.