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Located in Cobb County, Georgia, United States, to the northwest of Atlanta, Kennesaw is a bedroom community that is part of the Atlanta metropolitan area.

Kennesaw, which was once on the outskirts of the Atlanta metropolitan region, has blossomed into a prosperous municipality in just a few short decades. In addition to being home to Kennesaw State University, a highly regarded public research institution, the area’s abundance of retail establishments, dining options, and housing options have contributed to the city’s rapid development as a desirable Atlanta, Georgia suburb.

Kennesaw was the site of several of the most pivotal Civil War battles. Visit Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield to relive this moment in history. A short film and artifacts are featured in the onsite museum. As an added bonus for history aficionados, there are also civil war reenactments held at certain periods of the year. If you want to get some exercise, you could hike up the mountain.

Big Shanty was the name of the town from the time it was founded in the 1830s until it was renamed Kennesaw in 1887. There were about 29,785 people living in Kennesaw as of the 2010 census, but by 2019 that number had increased to 34,080, an increase of 14%. Kennesaw is a pivotal city in the development of railroads. As early as April 1862, Kennesaw served as the jumping off point for the Great Locomotive Chase that took place during the Civil War.

During the late 1830s, when the Western and Atlantic Railroad was being constructed, shanty towns sprung up to house the workers. There was a large spring close by. The name “large grade to the shanties,” “Big Shanty Grade,” and “Big Shanty” were all applied to an ascent from the Etowah River.

In 1934, L.C. Chalker bought a 1.25-acre plot of land from J.W. Ellis, which was located next to the Kennesaw Cemetery and was intended for use as a burial ground. In 1948, Chalker bought an additional acre of land next to the original plot for use as a cemetery.

Before the mid-1950s, the Chalker family oversaw this section of the cemetery before selling it to the city of Kennesaw. The child Lucius B. Summers was buried in 1863, making his interment the earliest documented. Other gravestones range in age from the 1860s to the 1890s. This cemetery is dedicated to the resting of Union soldiers who died during the Civil War. There is still regular activity at the Kennesaw Cemetery.

Every year, there are a number of celebrations. Over 200 arts and crafts stalls and 20 food booths run by local companies and entrepreneurs are on show at the downtown Big Shanty Festival every April. Around sixty thousand people from all across North Georgia come to the festival every year. There is a procession through the city at the start of the festival.

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