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The Great Atlanta Fire

by Chris Schroder

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In a few years, Atlanta will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Great Atlanta Fire of 1917. The city was engulfed in flames a mere 53 years after the city was destroyed during the Battle of Atlanta.

The fire, which stretched from Edgewood Avenue to Ponce de Leon Avenue, was extinguished after burning for 10 hours May 21 and after destroying 300 acres, leaving 10,000 residents homeless.

The fire permanently changed Atlanta’s landscape and building codes. Boulevard, North Avenue and Ponce de Leon were quickly developed after the fire, while downtown single-family homes were replaced by apartment buildings to house the displaced.

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