Getting to Know McDonough, Georgia


Want to learn a little more about the great town of McDonough, Georgia? Located about 30 miles south of Atlanta, it is the county seat of Henry County and is home to several tourist attractions and historic landmarks.

With a population just shy of 30,000, McDonough has the small-town feel that so many enjoy! Yet it is still close enough to the city to get all the benefits of access to major attractions, such as the Atlanta Motor Speedway and Truist Park, the baseball stadium. 

Founded in 1823 around a town square design, the city was actually a relay station on the New York City to New Orleans stagecoach line. The early years of the city were based on an agrarian economy, with blackmill shops, cotton gins, and masons in abundance. 

The Henry County Courthouse was originally in the center of the town. The city was named for Commodore Thomas MacDonough, the hero of the Battle of Lake Champlain in the War of 1812. 

The Brown House is one of the town’s historic landmarks, a two-story house that now serves as the headquarters for the Genealogical Society of Henry and Clayton Counties Inc. It is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Other notable places on the register include the Brown Hotel, the Henry County Courthouse, Lawrenceville Street Historic District, and the McDonough Historic District.

McDonough town square is now the setting for many festivals and events, including the annual Geranium Festival, held on the third Saturday of May in McDonough Square. Sponsored by the McDonough Lions Club, it began in 1977 and was first called the Henry County Chamber Arts and Crafts Festival.  

Here’s a couple of fun facts about McDonough:

  • Several films have been made in the city, including A Madea Christmas and the 1977 film Smokey and the Bandit. 
  • NBA Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal has a residence in McDonough.  

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