Atlanta, Georgia is home to many amazing people and communities with big hearts; we’re also a city with incredible ties to many different cultures – this is evidenced by our seventeen sister cities connections. One of these connections is between Atlanta and Toulouse, and the ATSCC is profoundly proud of all the things that have been accomplished in the last few decades.
In this blog, we’ll take a quick look at the history of the Atlanta-Toulouse connection and what you can do to get involved!
Atlanta’s Seventeen Sister Cities
Did you know that Toulouse isn’t Atlanta’s only sister city? That’s right – Atlanta, Georgia has sixteen other sister city partnerships:
- Ancient Olympia, Greece
- Brussels, Belgium
- Bucharest, Romania
- Cotonou, Benin
- Daegu, Korea
- Fukuoka, Japan
- Lagos, Nigeria
- Montego Bay, Jamaica
- Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK
- Nuremberg, Germany
- Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago
- Ra’anana, Israel
- Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
- Salcedo, Dominican Republic
- Taipei, Taiwan, Republic of China
- Tbilisi, Republic of Georgia
What Does It Mean to Be “Sister Cities?”
“A sister city or a twin town relationship is a form of legal or social agreement between two geographically and politically distinct localities for the purpose of promoting cultural and commercial ties.” – Wikipedia
The sister city relationship is an idea that was born in 1931 with Toledo, Ohio’s relationship with Toledo, Spain. We see mention of “sister cities” before World War II, but not in a legal capacity. The official, legal relationship that we know today started with Toledo, Ohio and Toledo, Spain.
But, what does the Sister Cities relationship actually mean? What does it do for both ends of the relationship? Here are a few of the benefits of sister city arrangements:
- Opportunities for citizens of both countries arise within the partnership.
- Business connections are formed between both countries.
- Cultural exchange and a greater understanding can be gained through the partnership.
- Tourism can bolster local income.
The Atlanta and Toulouse Sister Cities Partnership
When Did Atlanta and Toulouse Become Sister Cities?
Atlanta and Toulouse officially became Sister Cities on December 17th, 1974, making it one of the first four sister city relationships for Atlanta to establish.
Who Was Responsible for Atlanta and Toulouse Becoming Sister Cities?
At the time, the Atlanta mayor was Maynard Jackson, and Toulouse’s mayor was Pierre Baudis. Mayor Jackson had actually lived in the city of Toulouse, France, when he was a small child.
The Atlanta Toulouse Sister Cities Committee (ATSCC) has continued this partnership and is responsible, with some support from Sister Cities International, for maintaining the relationship and organizing events and exchanges.
How Long Have Atlanta and Toulouse Been Sister Cities?
Atlanta and Toulouse will have been sister cities for fifty years in December of 2024. At the time of writing this post (March 2023), their relationship has been intact for 48 years.
How You Can Get Involved in the Atlanta and Toulouse Sister Cities Relationship
Thank you for your interest!
- The team at ATSCC