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The History of Dunwoody, GA

The unincorporated area called Dunwoody was pioneered in the early 1830's and is named for Major Charles Dunwoody (1828-1905). Originally a farming community, the
area now includes about 15,000 homeowners.

A significant part of the DeKalb portion was owned by the Spruill family. Their homeplace on Ashford-Dunwoody Road, now the Spruill Historic Home and Gallery, was donated to DeKalb County and Dunwoody by Mrs. Ethel Spruill and Miss Onnie Mae Spruill.

The first church, which also served as a private school, was Ebenezer Primitive Baptist Church. Established in 1829, it is still an active church located at the intersection of Roberts and Spalding Drive's.

The first public school was started in 1889 near the intersection of Chamblee-Dunwoody and Mt. Vernon Road's. From 1911 to 1989 it was Dunwoody Elementary School. After closing it was renovated to house the Dunwoody Library and Cultural Arts Center.

The first "mass transit system" was a rail line built in 1881 that ran from Chamblee to the Chattahoochee River, passing through Dunwoody along what is now Chamblee-Dunwoody Road. The "Old Buck" train ran for 40 years and resulted in a campaign whistle stop visit in 1905 by president Theodore Roosevelt.

Many of the founding families of Dunwoody are buried in historic cemeteries such as those at Ebenezer Primitive Baptist Church and the old site of New Hope Presbyterian
Church (near Roberts Drive-Chamblee-Dunwoody junction), as well as the Donaldson, Eidson and Spruill family cemeteries.

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