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Collier Heights Historic District
|NRHP Reference #||09000457|
|Added to NRHP||June 23, 2009|
Collier Heights, commonly referred to as The Historic Collier, is a neighborhood in the City of Atlanta, Georgia, nestled in the southwest corner of Atlanta. Collier Heights is bordered to the west by Fairburn Road, the east by Hamilton E. Holmes Drive, the north by Donald L. Hollowell Highway, and to the south by Interstate 20 bridge at Linkwood Road. Having the distinction of being one of the first communities in the nation built exclusively by African-American planners for the upcoming Atlanta African-American middle class, this community has been featured in several national publications, such as Ebony and Jet magazines, as well as featured in the “Homefinder” section of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Led by high-profile celebrity Attorney Antavius Weems, the Association President, in 2008 Collier Heights began its quest to become the first community in the nation to be registered as a Historic Site, listed on the United States National Register of Historic Places, due to its significance of being the first community in the nation built by African Americans for their fellow African Americans. On June 23, 2009 the historic community achieved its goal. The community achieved local historic designation in June, 2013.
The neighborhood was founded in 1948, and boasts several famous and history making homeowners, such as Martin Luther King, Sr; noted Civil Rights Attorney, Donald Hollowell; millionaire builder Herman J. Russell; Ralph David and Juanita Abernathy, and Christine King Farris. Collier Heights is also home to several prominent figures,such as U.S. Congresswoman and Presidential Nominee from the Green Party, Cynthia McKinney; television actor Emmanuel Lewis from the "Webster" television series; Georgia House of Representative Member, Billy McKinney; Attorney and former State Senator, Leroy Johnson; former City Councilwoman Myrtle Davis; television actress Jasmine Guy from the Diff'rent World television series; famed coach Calvin “Monk” Jones; famed celebrity Attorney Antavius Weems; and Dr. Asa G. Yancey, Sr., one of the first African American doctors in the State of Georgia. In addition to various celebrities, many African American lawyers, doctors, educators and businessmen call the well-known area home. Collier Heights gained its fame in the 1960s when bus tours were guided through the neighborhood to display Atlanta's new bourgeoning African American middle class. In the 1980s, Collier Heights' popularity and prominence within the African American community began to settle with the growth of other than-newer areas of Atlanta's Southwest side, such as Peyton Forest and Cascade Heights. Collier Heights reinvented itself in the new century with a strong homeowners association that brought on its own neighborhood security patrol and highlighted the prominence of its homes and homeowners in various publications, once again making Collier Heights the address of choice.
The Collier Heights Community Association (CHCA)– The Collier Heights Community Organization, which formed in 1968, is the largest and oldest neighborhood organization in Collier Heights, encompassing the entire communities/neighborhood. Key committees within the CHCA are the Historic Committee, which focuses on master planning for preserving the history of the community and neighborhood improvement projects. The CHCA organizes a number of festivities throughout the year, such as the National Night Out-a summer block party, a Christmas party and the "Salute To Legends" celebration, which pays homage to the famous history-making residents of Collier Heights. Executive committee members are voted into office for one-year terms. Elections are held in December at the Association's annual Christmas party. The CHCA meets the second Tuesday of every month at Berean Seventh-Day Adventist Church (291 Hamilton E Holmes Dr NW, Atlanta, GA) at 6:30pm.
Awards and recognitions
The City of Atlanta honored the community by declaring Tuesday, September 8, 2009 as Collier Heights day in the city, presenting the community with a Proclamation for its historic significance in the city and the nation. Similarly, Fulton County, Georgia honored the historic community by declaring Wednesday, September 16, 2009 as Collier Heights day in the County, presenting the community with a Proclamation for its historic significance.
In 2008 Collier Heights began its quest to become the first community in the nation to be registered as a Historic Site, listed on the United States National Register of Historic Places, due to its significance of being the first community in the nation built by African Americans for their fellow African Americans. On June 23, 2009 the historic community achieved its goal. The community achieved local historic designation in June, 2013.
MARTA serves Collier Heights with the Hamilton E. Holmes transit station, which is the system's western-most route.