Purpose / Vision / History

Our Vision

In Business For Business

As one of more than 5,000 chambers of commerce, The Greater Macon Chamber of Commerce is an organization through which the voluntary manpower of our community works effectively to make the Macon region a better place to live, work and play.

The Greater Macon Chamber of Commerce is organized for the purpose of advancing the positive growth and development of the Macon Region. It encourages the growth of existing industries and businesses, while giving all proper assistance to any new firms or individuals looking to locate in the Macon region. The Chamber strives to support all activities believed to be beneficial to the community, and in general seeks to enhance the standard of living for Macon area citizens, looking to accomplish the greatest good for the greatest number.

Greater Macon Chamber of Commerce Accreditation’s:

Join Now

Interested in Joining? We can’t wait to talk to you! Please call us at 478-621-2007 to hear about all the ways your investment in the Greater Macon Chamber of Commerce can benefit your business, or email us at ojohnson@maconchamber.com and we will contact you with all the details.

Strategic Plan Highlights

The Greater Macon Chamber of Commerce Strategic Plan is a comprehensive look at key initiatives to help the Macon region achieve a more sustainable economy and quality of life:

  • Chamber Viability & Excellence
  • Member Engagement
  • Military Affairs
  • Education & Workforce Development
  • Regional & Government Partnerships
  • Existing Business & Industry
  • Economic Development
  • See the Strategic Plan

Vision / Mission Statement

Vision Statement:
To create the best location for business.

Mission Statement:
The Greater Macon Chamber of Commerce will provide the resources and support to advance business success in the region.

Core Values:
• Ethical
• Inclusive
• Respectful
• Fiscally Responsible

Our History

While Macon has been an incorporated city only since 1823, its history stretches back thousands of years. Macon lies on the site of the Ocmulgee Old Fields, home to the Creek Indians and their predecessors for as long as 12,000 years before the white man arrived. Funeral mounds and temple mounds still stand in Macon, left by the earliest known Paleo-Indian cultures, through the Woodland, the Early Mississippian, and the Late Mississippian cultures. Today you can walk in the footsteps of the ancients at the Ocmulgee National Monument, run by the National Park Service, and get a fascinating look into the lives of the original caretakers of our area.

Not far from the Ocmulgee Mounds, you can see a replica of the trading post President Thomas Jefferson established in 1806 as a peacekeeper and trading site after the Creeks ceded their lands east of the Ocmulgee River. The trading post was named for the Indian agent and statesman Benjamin Hawkins.

Beginnings of a City
The Georgia legislature created Bibb County In 1822 and named it for William Wyatt Bibb, a U.S. Senator. Macon, named in honor of Nathaniel Macon, a North Carolina patriot and statesman, was designated the county seat.

As Macon grew, city leaders recognized the need for planning. Ancient Babylon inspired Macon’s appointed surveyor, James Webb, in 1823 to lay out a city with multitudes of parks and spacious avenues. City planners designated 250 acres for Central City Park and required citizens to plant shade trees in their front yards. Macon is beautiful and shady still today.

Cotton became the mainstay of Macon’s early economy, and the city thrived due to its location on the Ocmulgee River. Cotton boats, stage coaches, and later, in 1843, a railroad all brought prosperity to Macon. During the Civil War, in his haste to reach the sea, Sherman bypassed Macon, although in the same war, a cannonball shot by Federal troops flew across the Ocmulgee River, careened off a porch column and landed at the foot of a flight of stairs in a newly built Greek Revival mansion. The cannonball still sits at the landing, and the house, the Cannonball House, is now a museum open to the public.

The 20th Century
Throughout the Reconstruction era and into the 20th Century, Macon grew into a town built on an agricultural base. After World War I, Macon experienced a burst in development fueled by the boll weevil, a drought, and the land’s consequential crop failure.

From 1924 to 1926, the Huff Daland Dusters – to become Delta Air Lines in 1941 – operated in Macon, blanketing area cotton crops with pesticides to combat the boll weevil. Meanwhile, the federal government encouraged the city to build a local airport. In September 1926, as the airport was being completed, the first airmail flight was scheduled to land but was unable to touch ground because of a dispute between county and city officials. A crowd gathered to watch as the pilot flew his plane as low as he possibly could, dropping a bag full of mail into the postmaster’s arms.

Macon began to serve as a transportation hub for the entire state in the early 20th Century, but especially so after the construction in the 1960s of Interstates 75 and 16, which connect in Macon. Today these arteries carry an average annual daily traffic count of between 100,000 and 200,000 vehicles.

In 1994, the brunt of Tropical Storm Alberto hit Middle Georgia. The Ocmulgee River crested at 35.4 feet, setting a record for the river’s water level. Macon’s water treatment plant on the banks of the river was flooded and more than 160,000 citizens went without treated water for up to 19 days. The Macon Water Authority received more than $95 million in federal and state disaster aid and the new, award-winning Amerson Water Treatment Plant opened in 2000, replacing the flood-damaged Riverside plant.

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