Gone With The Wind in Marietta, Georgia

Everyone who follows me knows that my exploration of the United States goes far beyond the classic itineraries and discovering the big cities. I love to follow the leitmotif of traditions, multiculturalism, literature and their incredible evolution historical, made up of epic moments (more or less), and extreme situations. The USA, although relatively young, has a rich history of twists and turns.

The "Peach State" Georgia combines everything that makes the South so attractive with fascinating landscapes from the mountains of the Appalachian Mountains to the dreamy beaches of the Atlantic Ocean. It has very warm hospitality, lots of history. In Georgia, you will find everything in one state.

At 5 am my alarm rings. It means getting ready to go from Valdosta to Marietta. My suitcases are already packed in the hallway. The driver is waiting at the door and helps with loading the heavy luggage. I sleep a bit after flipping through the guidebook.

Gone With The Wind in Marietta

Gone With the Wind in Marietta

This tour starts in the Midtown area of Atlanta, the fascinating capital of Georgia. This area is home to Margaret Mitchell's Tudor-style residence, which has been refurbished several times. It was here that she wrote Gone With the Wind, the novel that gave her international fame.

Today the entire ground floor of the building is dedicated to the writer and the novel. It covers the covers of all the first editions distributed in the most disparate countries in the world, diaries, personal items, small relics related to the film, some autograph pages of the novel and the typewriter used by Margaret. It is also possible to watch an interesting 30-minute film about the birth of the book and film.

The guided tour lasts about an hour and is full of anecdotes and useful information. South of downtown, shortly after the African-American neighborhood of Sweet Auburn are the historic sites dedicated to Martin Luther King. There is the old Oakland Cemetery. It is an enchanted place, and a perfect location for the setting of some film or series, because this sacred site definitely looks outside time and space.

As my mind starts painting a picture of a bygone era, my driver announces that we have arrived at Marietta Square. After few minutes of walking, I reach the Gone With the Wind Museum in Marietta, which contains an impressive number of movie-related objects, photos, costumes, and scripts.

It is a real treat for lovers of the genre. There is the original dress that Scarlett wears when she returns from Charleston after marrying Rhett. Moreover, at the Visitor Center, maps are distributed free of charge, showing the historical residences, the plantations and all the itineraries, strictly original, linked to the historical period and the locations of the film.

History Beckons in Marietta

After visiting the lovely museum, we drive to the northwest side of Marietta to reach Kennesaw Mountain, the site of a Civil War battlefield. Kennesaw is the only rocky escarpment in this region and is a popular hiking area. The neighborhood around Kennesaw is dotted with old wooden houses that make for a nice area for walking. There are several places to visit around the mountain, but we first go to the Visitor Center at the foot of the mountain.

We then visit the Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History. Well, here, northerners had stolen a locomotive during an epic episode that marked the memories.

They intended to use this loco to walk in southern territory and blow up bridges but have been caught before. However, it is necessary to warn the sensitive souls that this shop proposes a lot of racist propaganda, and also has dresses of Ku Klux Klan on sale. For the rest, and everything about the Civil War, the place is interesting.

Just to the left of the Wild Man, right on the corner, is a small restaurant that serves a wide selection of Southern cuisine. As I am hungry after the long journey, I quickly go for lunch and order a traditional Southern dish.

From the center, we take a shuttle, which leads to the top of the mountain. We see the Confederate guns still pointing to the North, along with a breathtaking view of Atlanta and the surrounding area.

Our next destination is the small town of Roswell. It is a very pleasant place to walk through the squares. Roswell was before a small paradise for other tribes, those of Cherokees. The first thing we do when we arrive in Roswell is to go to the Visitors Center, on the Town Square side, at the intersection of Atlanta Street and Sloan Street. It is a very pleasant place to walk in the squares with millennial trees and houses of the nineteenth century.

There are numerous antique shops, art galleries, terraces of friendly restaurants. Roswell also kept this wild side along the Chattahoochee River. The Chattahoochee Nature Center is a great place for walks, jogging or enjoying nature amidst canoe tours.

Eating Out in Marietta

In the evening, I am lucky enough to enjoy the jazz orchestras playing under the gazebo in the town square. We stop at one of the several restaurants that offer menus at a low price. We sit down and order pickled okra, fried green tomatoes, and black-eyed pea cakes as appetizers, as well as fried chicken for our main dish.

After the main course, I am already so full that I have to bow politely but defiantly at the waiter's second round of bread. For dessert, we have the classic pecan pie and the peach cobbler. There can be no better end to the day than a cool mint julep.

Time to Sleep in Marietta

I want to get some rest, but I am traveling without hotel reservations. Unfortunately, the surrounding guesthouses are fully booked. Instead, I book a Marietta hotel online, opting for one in the heart of the city. This turns out to be a great decision.

As I reach my room and lie down, I start thinking of my next destination. Tomorrow, I'll be heading toward Savannah, which is about 300 kilometers from Marietta.
Kalyan Panja