Facts About Brunswick, Georgia
Brunswick is a city in the U.S. state of Georgia and the seat of Glynn County. The municipality is located in southeastern Georgia on a harbor on the eastern shore of Oglethorpe Bay, approximately 30 miles north of Florida. It was founded in 1771 by the Province of Georgia and incorporated on February 22, 1856. Plans for the city's streets and squares were laid out in the grid style following James Oglethorpe's Savannah Plan. In 1789, George Washington proclaimed Brunswick one of the five original ports of entry for the United States.
In 2006, the city proper had an estimated population of 16,074, and it had an estimated metropolitan population of 101,792 in July 2007. The city's metropolitan area is the twelfth largest in the state of Georgia and includes the counties of Glynn, Brantley, and McIntosh.
The Port of Brunswick is one of the nation's most productive ports on the Atlantic coast. The city's economy encompasses manufacturing, agricultural processing, and bulk cargoes. Tourism constitutes the largest industry in Brunswick and Glynn County. Brunswick is the center of Georgia's shrimp and crab industry; the city is nicknamed the "Shrimp Capital of the World" due to the many wild shrimp harvested in its local waters.
The headquarters facility of the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC), one of the largest agencies of the United States Department of Homeland Security, is a vital part of Brunswick's economy. The facility, located 5 miles north of the central business district of the city, trains thousands of students monthly. Adjacent to FLETC is the Brunswick Golden Isles Airport, which provides commercial air service to the region.
The area's first European settler, Mark Carr, arrived in 1738. Carr, a Scotsman, was a captain in General James Oglethorpe’s Marine Boat Company. Upon landing, he established his 1,000-acre tobacco plantation along the Turtle River. The Royal Province of Georgia purchased Carr’s fields in 1771 and laid out the town of Brunswick in the grid style following Oglethorpe’s Savannah Plan. The town was then named after the duchy of Brunswick-Lüneburg in Germany (the ancestral home of King George II of Great Britain).
The town of Brunswick began to scarcely grow when the American Revolution intervened, and a largely Loyalist population fled to Spanish Florida or the Caribbean basin. Development continued, however, and its strategic location along the Atlantic coast prompted George Washington to proclaim Brunswick one of the five original ports of entry for the colonies in 1789. In 1797, the Georgia General Assembly transferred the county seat of Glynn County from Frederica (on St. Simons Island) to Brunswick.
Glynn Academy, the first public building in Brunswick and the second-oldest high school in Georgia, was constructed in 1819. Throughout the former part of the nineteenth century, Brunswick gained a courthouse, a jail, and about thirty houses and stores. The town was officially incorporated as a city on February 22, 1856. By 1860, the city had a population of 468, a bank, a weekly newspaper, and a sawmill which employed nine workers.
Brunswick was abandoned during the Civil War when citizens were ordered to evacuate. The city, like many others in the South, suffered from post-war depression. After one of the nation’s largest lumber mills began operation on nearby St. Simons Island, economic prosperity returned. Rail lines were constructed from Brunswick to inland Georgia, and, unlike many other southern cities during the Reconstruction period, Brunswick experienced an economic boom.