Established as "Mule Camp Springs" near the crossing of two Indian trails followed by settlers in the 1800s, the City of Gainesville has maintained and built upon its historical legacy as a regional transportation and trade center for almost two centuries.
Less than three years after the creation of Hall County, the village of Mule Camp Springs was chosen to serve as the site of government for the new county and was chartered by the Georgia Legislature on November 30, 1821.
At the suggestion of Justice John Vance Cotter, it was given the name "Gainesville" in honor of General Edmund P. Gaines, a hero of the War of 1812 and a noted military surveyor and roadbuilder. Gainesville has been a part of the nation's governmental framework longer than 26 of the 50 states.
Gainesville operates under a Council-Manager form of government. Every two years the Council elects two members to serve as Mayor and Mayor Pro-Tem respectively. They are the Chairman and Vice Chairman of the legislative body, which is composed of a Mayor and four council members, and is responsible for enacting ordinances, resolutions, and regulations governing the City, as well as appointing the members of various statutory and advisory boards, and the City Manager, City Clerk, and City Attorney.
Under the guidance of the City Manager and the Council, the City provides a full range of services. These services include police and fire protection; the maintenance of streets and infrastructure; parks; recreational activities and cultural events; planning, zoning, and building inspection services; water and water pollution control services; and an airport.
In a relatively short period of time, Gainesville has grown from virgin forest to become the trade, economic, industrial, medical, cultural and recreational center of Northeast Georgia. In Gainesville we believe there are no limits for our future.