A two-mile, leisurely walk through downtown Atlanta brings into focus the growth of the brand known the world over. In about 20 minutes, one can walk from Coca-Cola’s original home base, where 130 years ago only one man in the world knew the taste of Coca-Cola – to its current headquarters at a time where it would pose a challenge to find anyone who does not know the taste.
In May 1886, Dr. John Pemberton perfected the Coca-Cola syrup in a laboratory in a house on Marietta Street in downtown Atlanta. Equipment for the fledgling operation was shuttled from building to building as the enterprise continued to grow. In 1898, Coca-Cola President Asa Candler opened the doors to the first building erected for the sole purpose of housing The Coca-Cola Company. At the time, Candler called it a building “adapted to our peculiar needs for all future time.” However, that proclamation was quickly debunked as it was quickly outgrown and the company moved to larger quarters five times in the next 12 years.
Coca-Cola moved to its current headquarters location on North Avenue in Atlanta in 1920, originally in a three-story building. Since then, extensive remodeling and expansion has evolved the campus, which has included over time varied features from a cooperage to a flip disk wall.