404-624-9453 – Zoo Atlanta?s history dates to 1889, when businessman George V. Gress purchased a bankrupt traveling circus and donated the animals to the city of Atlanta. City leaders opted to house the collection in Grant Park, a popular Victorian picnic and promenade spot. Original residents of the Zoo included a black bear, a jaguar, a hyena, an elk, a Mexican hog, a raccoon, lions, monkeys, camels, pumas and snakes. The Zoo?s collection expanded in the 1930s with the personal donation of a private menagerie owned by Asa G. Candler, Jr.
The 1950s and 1960s were decades of renovation and construction at the Zoo, but by the early 1970s, many of its exhibits and facilities were outdated and showing signs of disrepair. In 1970, a small group of concerned citizens founded the Atlanta Zoological Society in hopes of raising funds and awareness for the institution.
When the Atlanta Zoo reached its period of sharpest decline in the mid-1980s, civic leadership appointed an emergency task force to address critical needs. The Zoo was privatized in 1985 with the creation of a nonprofit organization, Atlanta Fulton-County Zoo Inc., and was renamed Zoo Atlanta that same year. A 20-year period of aggressive restoration and revitalization followed, marked by several significant exhibit openings (e.g. The Ford African Rain Forest) in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Ten years after the Zoo?s 100th anniversary, Atlantans celebrated the long-awaited debut of giant pandas Lun Lun and Yang Yang.Click here to go to there Web Site