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Bainbridge, Georgia
Bainbridge City Hall
Bainbridge City Hall
Motto(s): 
"Georgia's First Inland Port"
Location in Decatur County and the state of Georgia
Location in Decatur County and the state of Georgia
Country United States
State Georgia
County Decatur
Area
 • City 19.83 sq mi (51.36 km2)
 • Land 18.60 sq mi (48.18 km2)
 • Water 1.23 sq mi (3.18 km2)
Elevation
121 ft (37 m)
Population
 (2010)
 • City 12,697
 • Estimate 
(2019)
12,081
 • Density 649.45/sq mi (250.75/km2)
 • Metro
27,842
Time zone UTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
39817, 39819
Area code(s) 229
FIPS code 13-04896
GNIS feature ID 0354431

Bainbridge is a city in Decatur County, Georgia, United States. The city is the county seat of Decatur County. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 12,697.

History

The town was named after U.S. Navy Commodore William Bainbridge, commander of the USS Constitution ("Old Ironsides"), and was incorporated on December 22, 1829.

In 1824, Bainbridge was designated seat of the newly formed Decatur County.

Geography

Bainbridge is located in the center of Decatur County. The city is in southwestern Georgia along U.S. Routes 27 and 84, which form a bypass around the southern part of the city. Bainbridge is 40 miles (64 km) northwest of Tallahassee, Florida; 82 miles (132 km) west of Valdosta; and 54 miles (87 km) east-southeast of Dothan, Alabama.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 20.1 square miles (52.0 km2), of which 18.8 square miles (48.7 km2) is land and 1.3 square miles (3.3 km2), or 6.40%, is water.

Bainbridge is located on the Flint River, which flows southwest to meet the Chattahoochee. Together they form the Apalachicola River which flows to the Gulf of Mexico. At the junction of the two rivers, the Jim Woodruff Dam forms Lake Seminole. A system of locks at the dam allows barge traffic to travel between the inland port at Bainbridge and the Gulf of Mexico.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1860 1,869
1870 1,351 −27.7%
1880 1,436 6.3%
1890 1,668 16.2%
1900 2,641 58.3%
1910 4,217 59.7%
1920 4,792 13.6%
1930 6,141 28.2%
1940 6,352 3.4%
1950 7,562 19.0%
1960 12,714 68.1%
1970 10,887 −14.4%
1980 10,553 −3.1%
1990 10,712 1.5%
2000 11,722 9.4%
2010 12,697 8.3%
2019 (est.) 12,081 −4.9%
U.S. Decennial Census

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 12,697 people living in the city. The racial makeup of the city was 54.4% Black, 39.6% White, 0.1% Native American, 0.7% Asian, 0.1% from some other race and 1.0% from two or more races. 4.1% were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

As of the census of 2000, there were 11,722 people, 4,444 households, and 3,013 families living in the city. The population density was 255.6/km2 (661.8/sq mi, Georgia average is 141.4/sq mi, U.S. average is 79.6/sq mi). There were 5,051 housing units at an average density of 285.2 per square mile (110.1/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 50.34% African American (Georgia 28.7%, U.S. 12.3%), 47.48% White (Georgia 65.1%, U.S. 75.1%), 0.12% Native American (Georgia 0.3%, U.S. 0.9%), 0.64% Asian (Georgia 2.1%, U.S. 3.6%), 0.02% Pacific Islander (Georgia 0.1%, U.S. 0.1%), 0.78% from other races (Georgia 2.4%, U.S. 5.5%), and 0.61% from two or more races (Georgia 1.4%, U.S. 2.4%). 2.00% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race (Georgia 5.3%, U.S. 12.5%).

There were 4,444 households, out of which 33.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 39.7% were married couples living together, 24.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.2% were non-families. 28.5% of all households were made up of individuals, and 12.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.52 and the average family size was 3.09.

Historical home Bainbridge, GA 2007-2
Historic home in Bainbridge

In the city, the population was spread out, with 28.0% under the age of 18, 9.9% from 18 to 24, 26.9% from 25 to 44, 19.2% from 45 to 64, and 16.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females, there were 84.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 78.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $24,869, and the median income for a family was $30,557. Males had a median income of $28,918 versus $21,518 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,589. About 24.0% of families and 26.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 41.1% of those under age 18 and 18.9% of those age 65 or over.

Arts and culture

Annual cultural events

River Town Days is held each year the second weekend of March.

The Swine Time Festival and Decatur County Fall Festival and Fair are annual events.

National Register of Historic Places

The Decatur County Courthouse was constructed in 1902, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Economy

It was announced in December 2019 that Brazil-based gun manufacturer Taurus had been granted a $39 million tax-incentive package to move from the Miami, Florida area to Bainbridge in return for creating 300 jobs. The package includes $20 million for construction, $7.9 million in tax credits, $4.5 million for infrastructure, $4.3 million in property-tax abatements, and $3 million for equipment, in addition to a land lease arrangement of $1/year for 73 acres (20 hectares) of land. The subsidy totals $130,000 per job.

Education

Decatur County School District

The Decatur County School District holds pre-school to grade 12, and consists of two elementary schools, one primary school, one middle school, and a high school. The district has 384 full-time teachers and over 5,782 students.

Schools include:

  • Jones-Wheat Elementary School (grades PreK-2)
  • West Bainbridge Elementary School (grades PreK-2)
  • Hutto Primary School (grades 3-5)
  • Bainbridge Middle School (grades 6-8)
  • Bainbridge High School (grades 9-12)

Other schools

  • Southwest Regional Technical Center (ABAC affiliations)
  • Grace Christian Academy (PreK-12)
  • Spring Creek Charter Academy (PreK-6)

Infrastructure

Transportation

The city is a seaport linked to the Gulf of Mexico via Florida's Apalachicola River. Officially known as Port Bainbridge, these facilities are managed entirely by the Georgia Ports Authority.

The Decatur County Industrial Air Park, located 6 miles (10 km) northwest of the city, provides general aviation service to the community.

Notable people

  • James Butler, NFL player
  • Alfred Corn, poet and essayist; born Bainbridge, raised in Valdosta
  • Marvin Griffin, former Georgia governor
  • Miriam Hopkins, Academy Award-nominated film actress
  • Paul Kwilecki, documentary photographer
  • Jason Lancaster, Singer and guitarist of Mayday Parade, singer of Go Radio, and solo career
  • David Ross, MLB catcher, two-time World Series champion, Dancing with the Stars contestant
  • Kirby Smart, head football coach for the University of Georgia
  • Travis Smith, former drummer of Trivium
  • Young Stribling, professional heavyweight boxer
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