James G. Kenan Research Center at the Atlanta History Center
|Title: ||Piedmont Driving Club Records|
1.75 linear ft.
(4 document cases)
The Piedmont Driving Club in Atlanta, Georgia is a private country club whose mission is to "provide and maintain a proper place for enjoyment, social intercourse, pleasure and recreation for its members and their families." It was established in 1887 at a Chamber of Commerce meeting when James Kingsbery and 100 other men agreed to jointly purchase Benjamin Walker's 190 acre tract of land in present day Midtown for $38,000. The Walker home stood as the orgininal club house, but as club membership grew, additions were made indluding the dining terrace, designed by member, Philip T. Shutze, and a ball room designed by members of the Atlanta firm Hentz, Reid, and Adler. The club has hosted a variety of dignitaries including President Taft; Governor Joseph Terrill; President Cleveland; opera singers: Enrico Caruso and Geraldin Farrar; and Jimmy and Rosalind Carter. The Club's roster has included Coca-Cola president Robert Woodruff, historian Franklin Garrett, and Untied States Attorney General Griffin Bell. Both the Atlanta Debutante Club and the Atlanta Junior League were organized there in 1911 and 1916, respectively. A press party for the premier of
Gone With the Wind was also held at the club. The Nine O'Clocks, a social organization, hosts its annual costume ball there each New Year's Eve.
Scope and Content Note
The bulk of the records are invitations and announcements. The invitations include dinner dances with music by Tommy Dorsey, Glenn Miller, and Tommy Tucker, among others. Invitations for seasonal parties, including the annual Halloween Ball with presentation of the debutantes, and Christmas and Valentine's Day parties are also included. Other invitations feature After the Opera suppers, dancing classes, and a variety of other themed parties. Announcements include information about administrative policies and changes, meeting notifications, and advance notifications of events. The records also contain annual reports (1952-1998), yearbooks (1909-1987), programs, and records from the Centennial Subcommittee regarding the planning of the centennial celebration and Jack J. Spalding's written history of the club (1937-1969). Correspondence from 1959 related to construction on the building and the ballroom. Newspaper clippings cover topics such as the architecture, events at the club. and controversies regarding business deals being conducted on the grounds. Also included ins the appication file for Michael Russell, the first African American member of the club. There is also a scrapbook, dated May 29, 1940 with photographs and news clippings of "Active Founders."
Alphabetical according to titles supplied by staff
Piedmont Driving Club Records, MSS 409, James G. Kenan Research Center at the Atlanta History Center.
Immediate Source of Acquisition note
Gift of Dr. Crawford F. Barnett, Jr., 1979 (1979.249); Natalie Cohen, 1979 (1979.321); and Sheffield Hale, 2009 (2009.153).
Collection reprocessed in 2011.
Conditions Governing Access note
This collection is open for research.
Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use
Unpublished manuscripts are protected by copyright law. (Title 17, U.S. Code) Permission for use must be cleared through the Kenan Research Center at the Atlanta History Center. Licensing agreement may be required.
|1||1||Announcements,, 1950-1998, undated|
|2||Annual reports,, 1952-1998|
|4||Schedules of events,, 1943-1986|
|3||1||Histories and Centennial Planning Subcommittee,, 1987|
|2||Letters, construction,, 1959|
|3||Newspaper clippings,, 1896-1967|
|4||Michael Russell application materials,, 1992-1995|
|4||1||Yearbooks,, 1909, 1936-1950|