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Gatherings of slaves and free blacks, for example, required a special sanction by the mayor, both groups had to observe strict curfews, and free persons of color could not live within the city limits without written permission of the city council.Antebellum Atlanta was a city led by merchants and railroad men, not planters, and as sectional differences mounted, businessmen and voters in the city tended to oppose secession, often on economic grounds.The three dominant forces affecting Atlanta's history and development have been transportation, race relations, and the "Atlanta spirit." At each stage in the city's development, these three elements have come into play.Transportation innovations and their connections to Atlanta helped establish the city as a state and regional center of commerce and finance.The town that emerged around this zero milepost was called Terminus, which literally means "end of the line." Had this remained the town's only rail connection, Atlanta might well have stayed a small, end-of-the-line frontier town.By 1846, however, two other railroad lines had converged with the Western and Atlantic in the center of town, connecting it to far-flung areas of the Southeast and spurring the city's growth.The remaining Unionists in Atlanta, whose numbers have been estimated at about 100 families, faced increased pressures to conform or leave town.
Both of these actions sparked increased settlement and development in the upper Piedmont section of the state and led to Atlanta's founding.
The biggest ordnance producer in the city, however, was the Confederate government arsenal, which produced percussion caps for muskets and pistols, small arms ammunition, saddles, bridles, cartridge boxes, canteens, and other military items and employed more than 5,000 men and women.
A second large war-related industry and producer was the Quartermaster Depot, which operated a shoe factory, a tannery, and a clothing depot that employed more than 3,000 seamstresses.
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