Tag: georgia

Christ Church Frederica – St Simons Island, Georgia

Christ Church Frederica, on St Simons Island in Georgia, was established in 1808 and is the 2nd oldest church in Georgia. The original church building was constructed in 1820 but was burned by Union troops during the Civil War. In 1884, Anson Greene Phelps Dodge, lead the rebuilding of the church as an act of love and remembrance of his wife, Ellen, who had died recently. The church still stands today as a memorial to her. Ellen is buried beneath the alter. The author, Eugenia Price, brought the Dodge family and so many other interesting and inspirational families to life on the pages of her St Simons Trilogy. She’s buried here as well. Highly recommend her books if you love St Simons and the Savannah area and you appreciate novels that are inspired by real people.

Starr’s Mill – Fayetteville, Georgia

Starr's Mill

Starr’s Mill is such a scenic Fayetteville, Georgia (about 40 minutes south of Atlanta). If you’re ever in the area and want the perfect place to enjoy a picnic and stretch your legs, it’s a must visit. Here’s the history of the site, courtesy of Georgia Info:

The property that became Starr’s Mill was owned by Hananiah Gilcoat who built the first mill here before his death in 1825. This site, on Whitewater Creek, was less than a mile from the boundary between Creek Indian lands and the State of Georgia. Hilliard Starr, who owned the mill from 1866 until 1879, gave the site its current name. After the first two log structures burned, William T. Glower built the current building in 1907. This mill operated until 1959, using a water-powered turbine, instead of a wheel, to grind corn and operate a sawmill. The Starr’s Mill site also included a cotton gin and a dynamo that produced electricity for nearby Senoia.

Butler Island Plantation Ruins – Darien, Georgia

Butler Island Plantation

The Butler Island Plantation are located just south of Darien, on what is now US Highway 17. The site is owned by The Nature Conservancy, and the land is open for picnicking, fishing and birding.

This was once one of the largest plantations in the South. The story of the plantation and former owners is an interesting one that began in the 1790s with Major Pierce Butler, an officer of the American Revolution who helped to draft the U.S. Constitution. Butler planted rice on his land on the Altamaha Delta. The marshlands and surrounding area provided perfect conditions for growing rice which led to a wealthy Southern enterprise.

When Major Butler died in 1822, the Butler Island Plantation passed to his grandson, Captain Pierce Butler. He was married to the noted English actress and writer Fanny Kemble who became a major advocate for the slaves on the plantation. She deplored the living conditions of the slaves on the farm and complained to her husband about the horrible treatment of the slaves by his manager, Roswell King, Jr. Kemble became an advocate for the abolition of slavery which created ongoing tensions with her plantation-owner husband. He threatened to take her daughters away from her if she published her views about slavery. Following their divorce, and after her daughters were grown, Kemble published her Journal of a Residence on a Georgian Plantation.

At the time her book was published, Great Britain was considering the possibility of intervening in the Civil War, on behalf of the South. Kemble’s book is credited with persuading the British to oppose slavery and ending any possibility of the British joining the Confederacy’s fight during the Civil War.

(Source: Explore Southern History)

Bonaventure Angel – Savannah, Georgia

Bonaventure Cemetery Angel

Bonaventure Cemetery is a place of beauty. I know what you’re thinking…”a beautiful cemetery? that sounds creepy!” But the moment you drive through the gates of this cemetery and begin to explore you’ll see what I saw when I visited for the first time. Beauty all around. The best way to describe Bonaventure is as an outdoor museum of art with exhibits such as this angel that greets you at the gates.

I love how Keith Eggener described historic cemeteries in an interview with The Atlantic: “… you leave behind the mercantile world outside the gates and enter into the space where you can meditate, where you can come into contact with spirituality and concentrate…You suddenly have large pieces of ground, filled with beautiful sculptures and horticultural art.”

So true! That’s what makes Bonaventure Cemetery one of the most beloved and most photographed sites in Savannah, Georgia. If you’re up for exploring Bonaventure, make sure you connect with The Bonaventure Historical Society for more info and to schedule a tour. It’s an expansive cemetery so it’s best to have a guide for your first visit.