Valdosta is a city in and the county seat of Lowndes County, located on the southern border of Georgia, United States. As of 2013, Valdosta has a population of 56,481. Valdosta is the city of the Valdosta Metropolitan Statistical Area. It includes part of Brooks County to the west, Valdosta is the home of Valdosta State University, a regional university in the University System of Georgia with over 10,900 students. The local public Valdosta High School has the most winning football program of any school in the United States. Valdosta is called the Azalea City, as the plant grows in profusion there, the city hosts an annual Azalea Festival in March. Valdosta was incorporated on December 7,1860, when it was designated by the legislature as the new county seat. The railroad was built to Valdosta that year, rather than Troupville, many citizens of Troupville had already relocated to Valdosta when the Atlantic and Gulf Railroad was built four miles away. On July 4,1860, the known as Satilla No.3 pulled the first train into Valdosta on the Atlantic. Valdosta is located in the plain of Georgia and has a virtually flat landscape. It was once the center of cotton growing in the United States. The county had a population well before the war with a substantial black population. The sixty miles of railway between Valdosta and Waycross were once the longest straight stretch of railroad in the world, today highways stretch through the county for miles with hardly a curve, rise, or fall. After being bypassed by the railroad and losing the county seat and it had been named after Governor George Troup, for whom Troup County, Georgia, was also named. Valdosta was named after Troups plantation, Valdosta, Troup had named it after the Valle dAosta in Italy. The name Aosta, refers to Emperor Augustus, a long-standing rumor held that the citys name meant vale of beauty. The American Civil War erupted just months after the establishment of Valdosta, during the war, Valdosta was far away from battles and became a refuge for those fleeing areas of Georgia where the war was being activelly fought. Since before the war, the American Colonization Society had supported the relocation of free blacks to Liberia, the first group from Lowndes County left in 1871, and were led by Jefferson Bracewell, the second group was led in 1872 by Aaron Miller
Valdosta City Hall
The Satilla No. 3 was the first train to arrive in Valdosta on July 4, 1860.