In the beginnings, the unincorporated area called Dunwoody was pioneered in the early 1830's and is
named for Major Charles Dunwoody. There is a significant part of the DeKalb County portion that was
owned by the Spruill family. Mrs. Ethel Spruill and Miss Onnie Mae Spruill donated their home place
on Ashford-Dunwoody Road, now the Spruill Historic Home, and Gallery, to DeKalb County and Dunwoody.
The first church, which also served as a private school, was Ebenezer Primitive Baptist Church.
Established in 1829, it is still an active church located at the intersection of Roberts Dr. and
The first public school was started in 1889 near the intersection of Chamblee-Dunwoody Rd. and Mt.
Vernon Rd. From 1911 to 1989, Dunwoody Elementary School operated on this site. In the early 1990ís
the former school building was converted to house both the Dunwoody branch of the DeKalb County
Public Library and the North DeKalb Cultural Arts Center. The community enjoys reading, the arts,
and live theatre in this facility.
The first mass transit system was a rail line built in 1881 that ran from Chamblee to the
Chattahoochee River, passing through Dunwoody along what is now Chamblee-Dunwoody Road. The
"Old Buck" train ran for 40 years and resulted in a campaign whistle stop visit in 1905 by
President Theodore Roosevelt.
Many of the founding families of Dunwoody are buried in historic cemeteries such as those at
Ebenezer Primitive Baptist Church and the old site of New Hope Presbyterian Church (near Roberts
Drive-Chamblee-Dunwoody junction), as well as the Donaldson, Eidson and Spruill family cemeteries.
Much of what Dunwoody is today is credited to the Dunwoody Homeowners Association. This unique
organization is widely regarded as one of the most powerful associations of its kind in the
United States. It traces its origins back to 1969-70, when large-scale residential development in
North Atlanta was just beginning. The upscale community now consists of approximately 40,000
homeowners, most of who look to the DHA to ensure their quality of life and protect their real
estate investment. Residence now resides in a community with some of the most elegant homes,
highest ranked schools, shopping boutiques, great entertainment, and fine dining.