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Fayette County, Georgia facts for kids

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Fayette County
Fayette County Courthouse, in Fayetteville
Fayette County Courthouse, in Fayetteville
Official seal of Fayette County
Seal
Map of Georgia highlighting Fayette County
Location within the U.S. state of Georgia
Map of the United States highlighting Georgia
Georgia's location within the U.S.
Country  United States
State  Georgia
Founded May 15, 1821; 201 years ago (1821)
Named for Marquis de Lafayette
Seat Fayetteville
Largest city Peachtree City
Area
 • Total 199 sq mi (520 km2)
 • Land 194 sq mi (500 km2)
 • Water 5.0 sq mi (13 km2)  2.5%%
Population
 • Estimate 
(2019)
114,421
 • Density 570/sq mi (220/km2)
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (EDT)
Congressional districts 3rd, 13th

Fayette County is a county located in the north central portion of the U.S. state of Georgia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 106,567. Fayette County was established in 1821. The county seat, Fayetteville, was established in 1823. Much of Fayette County is bordered on the east side by the Flint River.

Fayette County was organized in 1821 after the United States signed a treaty at Indian Springs, Georgia with the Creek people for cession of a large portion of their land. The county and its seat, Fayetteville, were both named in honor of the French aristocrat the Marquis de Lafayette, who aided General George Washington in the American Revolutionary War.

Since the late 20th century, Fayette County has been part of the Greater Atlanta Metropolitan Area. It is located south of Atlanta, which is based in Fulton County. Fayette County is minutes from Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. As a suburb of Atlanta, Fayette County has increased rapidly in population and development since the late 20th century, nearly doubling its population since 1990.

Both the county commission and the school board were elected members at-large from the county. The school board was one of only 20 boards, out of 180 in Georgia, that followed this system. Plaintiffs from the NAACP filed suit in 2011, charging that the system diluted their voting power, preventing the minority, who comprise 20% of the population, from electing candidates of their choice. The judge ruled in their favor and in 2013, a system of single-member voting was established, which the county and school board appealed. In 2014 the first African Americans were elected to the county commission and school board. In January 2016, the county and school board voted to settle the suit, as supported by the Chamber of Commerce. They have negotiated a system of four seats to be elected by single-member districts, with one at-large seat.

Fayette County has five incorporated municipalities within its borders; Fayetteville, Brooks, Woolsey, Tyrone and Peachtree City. Formerly, Inman was also a municipality, but gave up its charter years ago. In 2015 Fayetteville, a majority-white city, elected its first African-American mayor, Ed Johnson. In 2011 he had been the first African American elected to its city council and only the second African American elected to any office in the history of Fayette County.

History

Fayette County was created on May 15, 1821, from territory ceded to the United States by the Creek people, who had historically inhabited the area. It was named for the Marquis de Lafayette, French hero of the American Revolutionary War. Located in the Piedmont, the county was originally developed by planters for cotton cultivation, using enslaved labor for this commodity crop. Agriculture continued to be important into the early 20th century.

In the years following World War II, the county developed suburban residential communities, with many workers commuting to Atlanta. Peachtree City was chartered in 1959. It was developed as the only planned community in the county and in the Southeast; it covers 16,000 acres.

The county population has increased rapidly during the late twentieth century with the growth of Atlanta. It has also benefited from a reverse migration of African Americans to the South, as new residents are attracted to jobs and opportunities. Significant growth and development continues. In 2002 Charles "Chuck" Floyd was appointed to the position of Chief Magistrate Judge of the county. In 2004 and 2008, he was elected to the position in his own right, the first African American ever elected to any office in the county.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 199 square miles (520 km2), of which 194 square miles (500 km2) is land and 5.0 square miles (13 km2) (2.5%) is water.

The Flint River passes through the county and provided the earliest route for transportation and shipping of commodity crops. The entirety of Fayette County is located in the Upper Flint River sub-basin of the ACF River Basin (Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint River Basin).

Major highways

  • Georgia 54.svg State Route 54
  • Georgia 74.svg State Route 74
  • Georgia 85.svg State Route 85
  • Georgia 92.svg State Route 92
  • Georgia 138.svg State Route 138
  • Georgia 279.svg State Route 279
  • Georgia 314.svg State Route 314

Adjacent counties

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1830 5,504
1840 6,191 12.5%
1850 8,709 40.7%
1860 7,047 −19.1%
1870 8,221 16.7%
1880 8,605 4.7%
1890 8,728 1.4%
1900 10,114 15.9%
1910 10,966 8.4%
1920 11,396 3.9%
1930 8,665 −24.0%
1940 8,170 −5.7%
1950 7,978 −2.4%
1960 8,199 2.8%
1970 11,364 38.6%
1980 29,043 155.6%
1990 62,415 114.9%
2000 91,263 46.2%
2010 106,567 16.8%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2019

Based on the 2010 census and 2013 estimates, Fayette County has 108,365 people. The racial makeup of the county was 71.7% White; 21.4% Black or African American; 0.4% Native American, 4.3% Asian, 0.1% Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander; and 2.0% two or more races. 6.9% of the population was estimated as Hispanic or Latino of any race.

2010 census

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 106,567 people, 38,167 households, and 30,288 families residing in the county. The population density was 548.3 inhabitants per square mile (211.7/km2). There were 40,793 housing units at an average density of 209.9 per square mile (81.0/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 71.1% white, 20.1% black or African American, 3.9% Asian, 0.3% American Indian, 0.1% Pacific islander, 2.3% from other races, and 2.2% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 6.3% of the population. In terms of European ancestry, 15.0% identified as English, 14.0% as German, 13.0% as Irish, and 8.1% simply as American.

Of the 38,167 households, 39.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 65.7% were married couples living together, 10.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 20.6% were non-families, and 18.1% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.78 and the average family size was 3.15. The median age was 42.4 years.

The median income for a household in the county was $82,216 and the median income for a family was $92,976. Males had a median income of $68,381 versus $46,140 for females. The per capita income for the county was $35,076. About 3.4% of families and 4.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.1% of those under age 18 and 3.8% of those age 65 or over.

2020 census

Fayette County racial composition
Race Num. Perc.
White (non-Hispanic) 68,144 57.17%
Black or African American (non-Hispanic) 29,166 24.47%
Native American 212 0.18%
Asian 6,362 5.34%
Pacific Islander 44 0.04%
Other/mixed 5,786 4.85%
Hispanic or Latino 9,480 7.95%

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 119,194 people, 41,253 households, and 33,101 families residing in the county.

Communities

In 2015, the majority-white city of Fayetteville elected its first African-American mayor, Ed Johnson. Described as a "bridge-builder," Johnson is a retired naval commander and pastor of a black church; he was elected in 2011 as the first black on the city council.

Education

Fayette County is served by the Fayette County School System. The governing authority for the school system is known as the Fayette County Board of Education, a board of five elected persons. They hire a superintendent to manage daily operations of the schools.

Since a federal court ruling in 2013, resulting from the federal voting rights lawsuit described above, the five board members are each elected from single-member districts. In January 2016 after mediation, the school board voted unanimously to settle the lawsuit they had earlier appealed along with the county. The board accepted single-member districts for election of board members.

High schools

  • Fayette County High School
  • McIntosh High School
  • Sandy Creek High School
  • Starr's Mill High School
  • Whitewater High School

Alternative schools

  • Fayette County Alternative Education Program

Notable people

  • Paris Bennett, singer
  • Chris Benoit, WWE wrestler
  • Furman Bisher, longtime late sports columnist, Atlanta Journal-Constitution
  • Robert H. Brooks, former Chairman and CEO, Hooter's of America Inc.
  • Zac Brown, Grammy award-winning singer, Zac Brown Band
  • Robert J Burch,cChildren's author
  • Kandi Burruss, singer, reality TV star
  • Kathy Cox, State School Superintendent
  • Creflo Dollar, televangelist
  • Mike Duke, former CEO of Wal-Mart Stores Inc.
  • Lee Haney, retired professional bodybuilder and Mr. Olympia titleholder
  • Evander Holyfield, retired professional boxer
  • Tim Hudson, former starting pitcher with the Atlanta Braves and San Francisco Giants
  • Calvin Johnson, former NFL receiver for the Detroit Lions, Sandy Creek HS and Georgia Tech alum
  • Emmanuel Lewis, actor, Webster
  • Carole Marsh, children's author and founder of Gallopade International
  • Kelley O'Hara, United States Women's Soccer Player, 2011 FIFA World Cup silver medalist, 2012 Olympic gold medalist, 2015 FIFA World Cup gold medalist
  • Paul Orndorff, pro wrestler
  • Ferrol Sams, physician, humorist, storyteller, and best-selling novelist
  • Reed Sorenson, NASCAR driver
  • Christian Taylor, gold medal winner, 2012 Olympic Games (London) men's triple jump
  • Gy Waldron, creator and executive producer, The Dukes of Hazzard
  • John Waller, contemporary Christian singer
  • Gary Anthony Williams, television and film actor
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