Columbus is located in the southwestern portion of the 762 area code and along Georgia’s western border. The city has a population of 189,885 people. Columbus is the site of the Battle of Columbus. Largely considered to be the last battle of the Civil War, the Battle of Columbus happened after John Wilkes Booth assassinated President Lincoln, but before the Confederacy’s dissolution on May 5. While fighting in the Battle of Columbus, John Stith Pemberton was wounded and subsequently became addicted to morphine, which is what prompted him to create Coca-Cola.
A number of well-known national companies have their headquarters located in Columbus, including Aflac, Carmike Cinemas, TSYS, and Synovus. Despite the presence of a number of large corporations, Columbus’s largest employer is Fort Benning, a United States Army base known as the “Home of the Infantry” located just outside of the city lines. Columbus is also home to two colleges, Columbus State University and Columbus Technical College. Columbus has an unfortunately high crime rate that is nearly double the national average. The majority of the crimes in Columbus are property-related crimes with a property-related crime rate that is more than twice the national average.
Lawyers and other professionals who consider themselves to be military history buffs enjoy going to the National Civil War Naval Museum and the National Infantry Museum and Soldier Center. History fans also enjoy walking along the National Black Heritage Trail and stopping at the thirty unique historic sites along the trail. Football fans from all over the 762 area code travel to the A.J. McClung Memorial Stadium to watch the annual Fort Valley State – Albany State and Tuskeegee – Morehouse rivalry games, as well as the Pioneer Bowl.
Columbus is full of historic buildings and has eight historic districts listed on the National Register of Historic Places. One of the more famous historic buildings is the Springer Opera House, which is the official State Theater of Georgia and has attracted such luminaries as Oscar Wilde, John Phillip Sousa and Ethel Barrymore. Columbus is also the birthplace of a number of well-known people, including politician Newt Gingrich, comedian Wayne Brady, namesake of the Peabody Award George Foster Peabody, Blues musician “Ma” Rainey, and aviator Eugene Bullard, who was the first African American pilot.