Origin stories: how Cobb places
got their names
Cobb County became Georgia’s 81st county in 1832 and
was named after prominent Georgia Congressman Thomas
Willis Cobb. Cobb, who also served as a senator and superior
court judge, died at the age of 46 in 1830.
Less than a decade after Cobb’s founding, the state began
building the Western and Atlantic Railroad, which greatly influenced
the development of the county and many of its cities.
The area we now know as Acworth was once a watering
station for locomotives traveling through from the Western
and Atlantic Railroad. Originally, the station was called
Northcutt Station after station master Alfred Northcutt.
In 1843, railroad engineer Joseph Gregg renamed the
surrounding town Acworth, after his hometown of Acworth,
Family owned and operated
2950 King Street
Smyrna, GA 30080
20 FACTBOOK | 2022
1130 Whitlock Ave.
Marietta, GA 30064
New Hampshire, which was named for English Admiral
Today, Acworth is known as “The Lake City.”
Austell is named for Alfred Austell, founder of the
Atlanta National Bank, which later became Wachovia.
One of the nation’s largest cotton dealers, Austell was also
known for his efforts to build railroads in Southern states.
Early visitors to the area claimed the waters there had
medicinal properties, and the area was known as Salt Springs
for the water’s healing powers and for hunters’ use of the
salt licks to trap animals. Later, the area was renamed Lithia
Springs because of the lithium carbonate in the water.
The word Kennesaw comes from the Cherokee people who
used to farm there. The Cherokee word gah-nee-sah means
“cemetery” or “burial ground.”
As the Western and Atlantic Railroad was being constructed,
small shanty towns began to crop up on the edge of the
railroad. These towns were located on elevated ground near
a spring, with this location being called “Big Shanty Grade.”
Eventually, the “grade” was eliminated, and the area became
known as “Big Shanty.”
There are two competing stories as to how Marietta got its
name, according to Sarah Temple’s “The First Hundred Years.”
One is that there were two local women — named Mary
and Etta — whose beauty “so dazzled the gentlemen of the
town by their charms that the county seat was named for them.