Brookhaven has launched a historical website and is asking for help from the public with cataloguing important sites in the city.

Community Development Director Patrice Ruffin introduced the idea at the Brookhaven City Council’s Feb. 22 annual retreat where the council sets priorities for the upcoming year.

The website includes a list of historical resources, an interactive map where residents can look through different historic sites, and a portal residents can use to submit historical information. 

The city has taken previous steps to recognize Brookhaven’s history, including designating Lynwood Park — the oldest historically Black neighborhood in DeKalb County — as an official historic site in 2020. In 2015, former Mayor Rebecca Chase Williams used $3,500 of her discretionary funds to commission a local historian to research the city’s history. The information was put into a book called “Images of America: Brookhaven,” which is available for purchase on the new website. 

“From our very own Lynwood Recreation Center that was the site of an historic desegregation, to locations like China Grove Missionary First Baptist Church, which just celebrated its 100th anniversary, this city has a rich history that needs to be catalogued,” Ruffin said in a press release. “We’re asking the public for its help in identifying the sites that make up the historic fabric of Brookhaven.”

In the press release, Ruffin said the Community Development department also wants to partner with a historian to chronicle Brookhaven’s history since its incorporation in 2012.

Sammie Purcell is Associate Editor at Rough Draft Atlanta.