1. The Varsity

    June 20, 1982—Patrons at the Varsity, an Atlanta landmark founded in 1928.  The Varsity was the brainchild of Frank Gordy, a Georgia Tech dropout who thought students needed more cheap places to eat. He opened a short-order place on North Avenue in 1928 and kept adding on over the years until it accommodated 630 cars and 800 people inside. His daughter and grandson, Nancy Simms and Gordon Muir, now run the business. Today there are six Varsities in the metro area and Athens.

    This Friday, our annual Sping Dining Guide will be released and we are divulging some of our picks, chef’s and reader’s favorite. So here’s our question to you: What go-to dish do you order at your favorite restaurant? We want you to share your photos via Instagram or Twitter so we can include it in our photo gallery. Include your name, restaurant and dish and tag photos with #AJCWheretoEat.

     

  2. The starters

    1987—Hord Hardin, Chairman of the Masters and Augusta National, Gene Sarazen, 1935 Masters champ, Byron Nelson, 1937 and 1942 champ, and Sam Snead, winner in 1949, 1952, 1954 walk towards the #1 tee Thursday morning. These past champions kick off this year’s tourney. Photo by Calvin Cruce/AJC staff Go to ajc.com all week for complete coverage of the Masters.

     

  3. The Master’s begins

    1930s—Bobby Jones putting on the 13th green of the famous Augusta National course, where he will compete in the open golf tournament to be held April 2 to 5. The field will include the world’s greatest players. When Jones founded the Masters in 1934, it was a quaint little tournament in a quaint little state. Golf was hardly at the forefront of Georgia’s sporting passions, taking a backseat to minor-league baseball and college football. Jones would hardly recognize the place now. Go to ajc.om for complete Masters coverage all week. Photo by Walter Winn/AJC staff

     

  4. Augusta National 

    1931 – The 365 acre plot, Fruitland Nursery, was sold to the Golf Club in Augusta where the “perfect golf course will be laid out.” This is a photo of Augusta National Golf Club before it was the legendary course it is today. Today, each hole on the course is named after flowers and trees.

    This week marks the beginning of the Masters tournament better known as ‘The Masters’. It is one of the four major championships in professional golf and is always hosted by August National. 

     

  5. Peach State

    Peach trees as far as you can see: Georgia is known as the “Peach State” and perhaps no city honors the peach tree quite like Atlanta and its surrounding metro area. Peaches have been a part of Georgia’s agriculture since 1571, peaking with nearly 8 million bushels produced by 1928. Streets named after the vaunted peach tree (just to name a few): Peachtree Center Avenue (formerly called Ivy Street for pioneer Hardy Ivy), Peachtree Walk (formerly called Centre Street, per an 1895 map) and Atlanta’s famed Peachtree Street south of the railroad Gulch downtown (formerly called Whitehall Street for the Whitehall Tavern, a tavern/inn established in the 1830s)

    In this edition of our Flashback Fotos series, we meet the people behind the Atlanta streets and roads we often love to hate. No, we’re not talking about the folks who designed the tangle of thruways we navigate daily. For instance, we thought you’d like to know that Sidney Marcus isn’t just the moniker of a boulevard, there’s much more to John Wesley Dobbs than a street, and that our Journal and Constitution photographers will be happy to introduce you to these notable Atlantans. Go to myajc.com to see more images.

     

  6. Georgian Terrace

    April 8, 1961 - Well-known Peachtree Street landmark at Ponce De Leon, Georgian Terrace Hotel will be extensively remodeled inside. Photo by Charles D. Jackson from the AJC archives

    The Georgian Terrace was built in 1911, and it hosted the premiere party for Gone with the Wind stars in 1939 after its initial showing at the Lowe’s Grand theatre. The hotel is now being sold for $61 million to Southerly Hotels. 

     

  7. Zoo Atlanta

    1949 - Children’s excursion to the zoo. Lane Brothers Commercial Photographers, Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library

    Our city’s zoo existed long before it was called Zoo Atlanta. Before the name change in 1985, it was known as Grant Park Zoo. It began in March, 1889, when a traveling circus stalled on its way to Marietta. The caged, stranded animals began to draw crowds. A local businessman George Valentine Gress purchased the animals at auction and donated them to the city. The collection grew much larger in 1935, when Coca-Cola’s Asa G. Candler Jr. donated his collection of exotic animals, previously housed on his Briarcliff Road property, to the zoo in 1935. Many of these photos were taken soon after that acquisition. Go to myajc.com to see Flashback Fotos.

     

  8. Freaknik

    1994 – Gridlock in Atlanta caused by Freaknik interfered with weddings, work schedules and even a prom. The free-form festival brought the central city to its knees. At its peak in 1994 and 1995, more than 200,000 mostly black college students would flock to Atlanta, causing massive traffic jams as men would literally get out of their cars to taunt, videotape or grope women. But by the time it ended in 1999, politicians and police had made movement in Atlanta so restrictive that for the students, Freaknik was hardly worth it anymore. "I was disappointed by what it became," said Sharon Toomer, one of the founders of Freaknik. "Its original purpose was to be an annual event to encourage camaraderie between historically black colleges. It was a rare opportunity for black college students to get together." 

    During the 1982-1983 school year, Toomer was a freshman at Spelman College and a member of the D.C. Metro Club. Toomer said that as spring break approached the club planned a small picnic on campus for students who could not afford to go home. About 50 people showed up and enjoyed barbecue chicken, Go Go music and Parliament Funkadelic.

    "It was very innocent," Toomer said. "Even the name. Throughout the year, we had this thing about the Freak. There was a dance called "The Freak," Rick James had a song out called "Super Freak," and Chic had "Le Freak." So we named it Freaknik. That was it. It was a sign of the music at the time."Photo by Johnny Crawford from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution archives and text from a story by Ernie Suggs

     

  9. FBI hostage in Atlanta

    June 29, 1981 – Morris E. Roberts Jr., a mentally ill gunman, seized the Atlanta headquarters of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, holding nine employees hostage for three hours. Two hostages received minor leg injuries. Roberts was shot and killed by the FBI SWAT Team and the Atlanta Police. Involved in the response was FBI Special Agent John Glover and Special Operations Commander Major W. W. Holley. Photo by Jerome McClendon

     

  10. Seed & Feed

    1980 - The Seed & Feed Marching Abominable band performs in Atlanta’s annual St. Patrick’s Day parade, March 15, 1980. Photo by Judy Ondrey

    In this edition of our Flashback Fotos series, we take a gander at an Atlanta institution: the Seed & Feed Marching Abominable, a wacky costumed marching band that’s been dancing and playing its way into the hearts of Atlantans for 40 years. So sit back, relax and step into the Wayback Machine for a trip with Seed & Feed via the lenses of our Journal and Constitution photographers on myajc.com.

     

  11. Covers Dixie like the dew

    December 1949 — The Atlanta Journal Radio Station WSB car hits the Atlanta streets, with a newscaster holding microphone as he interviews pedestrians. The van was painted with slogans — for WSB, “The Voice of the South,” and for the Atlanta Journal, “The Journal Covers Dixie Like the Dew.”

    In this edition of our Flashback Fotos series, we take a look back at our sister stations here in Atlanta, WSB Radio and WSB-TV, during their early operating years. Both have remained popular with listeners and viewers throughout the decades, even as their programming has changed with the times. And WSB Radio has a birthday coming soon. The station began broadcasting March 15, 1922, and in 2014 celebrates 92 years on the air. Now, enjoy this inside view into the workings of both operations through the lenses of our Journal and Constitution photographers. Go to myajc.com to see more images.

     

  12. Memorable Georgia Legislature moments

    March 10, 1971 — The original caption for this photo reads: “Georgia Lt. Gov. Lester Maddox burns a copy of The Atlanta Constitution in the state Senate. Maddox, who presides over the body, was incensed at an article which accused the Senate of being in shambles with a huge backlog of legislation. He said the newspaper did not have the ‘guts, integrity, manhood or decency’ to report the situation accurately. Maddox drew a standing ovation as he concluded a fiery speech [while] burning the newspaper.”

    In this edition of our Flashback Fotos series, we take a look at the solons under the Gold Dome down at the Georgia State Capitol throughout the years. Passing the laws of our state and debating the important issues of the day is a noble task but, as our Journal-Constitution photographers’ lenses show, other goings-on take place during the annual 40-day session, too. Got to myajc.com to see more images.

     

  13. Streetcars in Atlanta

    Aug 14, 1945 - Soldiers and others celebrate V-J Day (“Victory over Japan Day”) on top of a streetcar on Peachtree Street, Atlanta, Georgia, August 14, 1945. Streetcars operated in Atlanta from 1871-1949.  Now, a modern day streetcar is currently under construction and is expected to open this year. Go to myajc.com to see more images of the streetcar through history.

    Atlanta Journal-Constitution Photographic Archive

     

  14. How ‘bout them rings

    1980 - University of Georgia coach Vince Dooley, center, and a group of his Bulldogs display their 1980 national championship football rings. The Bulldogs went 12-0 with a victory over Notre Dame in the Sugar Bowl to give them the championship. Go to myajc.com to see more group photos from years past.

     

  15. A beer ‘Full of Good Cheer’

    1949 - A worker checks the factory beer barrels at the Atlantic Brewing Company in February 1949. According to the book “Atlanta Beer: A Heady History of Brewing in the Hub of the South,” ABC’s “long aging process and more flavorful beers placed a higher burden on the brewery than did other breweries’ technologies for mass production.” AJC FILE

    In February 1949, the newspaper did a feature on the Atlantic Brewing Company. The Atlantic Company bought or built five Southern breweries, establishing its Georgia brewery in 1935. But the brewery got its start back in 1858 as the City Brewery, going through many name changes and various business incarnations due to Prohibition. Steinerbru, shown on billboards in this photo, was one of ABC’s oldest lines. The brewery was located at the corner of Courtland (then Collins) and Harris Streets in downtown Atlanta and was demolished in 1955. The cellars were destroyed in 1973. — Information from “Atlanta Beer: A Heady History of Brewing in the Hub of the South” and the Atlanta History Center. Go to myajc.com to see more images.