Local history we love

A look back at the history of Chamblee

As we’re looking to Love Local in this issue, we can’t fully love where we are if we don’t look at where we’ve been. So we wanted to take a look at the history of Chamblee to get a glimpse of where we came from.

The city of Chamblee has a write-up of Chamblee’s unique history on the city’s website. According to the website, Chamblee was one of 10 cities in DeKalb County and was incorporated August 17, 1908. The website also explains that the city started out as dairies, railroads, and the military, with the dairies and the railroads dominating the landscape at the time. It was 1917 when the landscape changed and Chamblee went from mostly dairy land to the home of Camp Gordon and 40,000 military personnel. This caused significant growth. “Almost overnight, forty new stores, three theaters, two hotels and a bowling alley were built to cater to this new population,” it states on the city’s website.

After World War I and World War II, the city went through industrial growth with large corporations building and settling in the area, mainly industrial and manufacturing sites. In the 1980s that all changed. Chamblee residents moved to other areas of metro Atlanta and refugees and immigrants made their way to Chamblee. And during the 1990s more changes took place leading to the protection of the city’s history, while moving forward with modern redevelopment opportunities.

The city continues to move forward on a progressive course and making it a prime area for its central location between I-285 and I-85, and it’s one of DeKalb County’s fastest growing cities. Today the city is more than seven square miles with more than 30,000 residents and a diverse population.

Check out the photos for a look back at the history of Chamblee. You can read more on the city’s website at


Today Chamblee has more than 30,000 residents with a diverse population.

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