WHAT’S IN A NAME: Calumet Park
Published 10:30 am Saturday, February 25, 2023
Parks have a way of bringing people together. Calumet Park on Union Street does that and more.
According to the Troup County Archives, the park is named for the historic Calumet Mill Village. From 1889 until 1982, mill workers lived in the area. Now, that same spot is the current site of St. Peter’s Catholic Church.
Over time, the Calumet Park area would fall prey to wear and tear and needed someone to step forward and make it a neighborhood to be proud of.
Leading that revitalization was Dr. Robert Tucker. He had lived in Atlanta for over 50 years before he decided to move back home to LaGrange in 2012.
It was when he was visiting the neighborhoods where he grew up, he didn’t like what he saw and set on a journey to bring it back to its former glory.
As a man who walked the walk and talked the talk, Tucker bought a house in the neighborhood and helped found the Calumet Village Neighborhood Association, now called the Calumet Park Neighborhood Association.
“When we started, it was terrible and had no sidewalks,” Tucker said. “Looking at it now, I think that’s the most beautiful little park that I’ve seen anywhere, and I’ve been all out of the country.”
During his involvement, Tucker served as the Board Vice-Chairman of the CPNA, which is focused on revitalizing the neighborhood.
In its mission of revitalizing the neighborhood, the organization had assistance over the years from the Callaway Foundation, which helped make enhancements to the park, including adding a splash pad.
Now, the organization is on a new mission to create new homes in underserved areas in the community.
“Optimistically speaking, we hope to get 20 houses spread out between Ware St, Render St, Daniel St. and more,” Tucker said. “It’s nice to be able to see progress even though it’s slow and takes a long time.”