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Bridge in Savannah. Talmadge. Savannah River.
Image by denisbin
Savannah looking towards the port and bridge.
James Oglethorpe was the founder of the Province of Georgia and the town of Savannah in 1733. Oglethorpe’s plan for the colony included no slavery, small but equal sized farms for everyone and well planned towns based on Roman ideals with town squares for open spaces and a grid pattern of streets. Savannah still shows vestiges of Oglethorpe’s plan with city wards based on a set number of houses (about 40) for each town square. Town families were also to be allocated five acres beyond the town boundaries for a small farm. Above all his plan was for the “middling” strata of society and it was designed to foster egalitarianism. Some historians claim the Colonel William Light was influenced by Oglethorpe’s plans and ideas when he planned the city of Adelaide. But Light was also influenced industrialism and the need for open parklands. Edward Gibbon Wakefield was also possibly influenced by Oglethorpe for his pan was also designed to equalise the price of farm lands, stop land speculation and use funds from the sale of land to subsidize the passage to SA of workers and servants. Similarly Oglethorpe’s plan used funds from the colony Trustees to subsidise passages to Georgia for intending migrants. Thus both the Oglethorpe and the Wakefield plans sought to replicate the best features of British society in a far off land. Both plans were expected to be a refuge for Protestants and Dissenters, with the Oglethorpe plan forbidding emigration of Roman Catholics to Georgia .Both colonies encouraged persecuted German Lutheran emigrants. Both were designed to encourage small scale farming, create a viable sustainable economy and produce an ordered society. Both plans were centred on a large well planned capital city (Adelaide and Savannah) which was to be the focus of all economic activity in the early years. In the end both plans were modified and then largely ignored as attempts of using colonisation systems for social engineering were not greatly successful. As early as 1738 colonists petitioned the colony Trustees and Oglethorpe for permission to own slaves. The Trustees did not give in on this until 1750 but two years later Georgia became a Crown colony under direct control of King George II anyway. Slavery then expanded and prospered as the favoured form of cheap labour rather than English labourers on assisted passages from England. Oglethorpe left Georgia for good in 1734 and other Trustees continued to control Georgia until it became a Crown colony.
Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace House Oglethorpe Avenue.
Juliette Gordon was born in 1860 and married William Low in 1886 a wealthy cotton factor or merchant who inherited his father’s house, Andrew Low House in that year. We visit Juliette Low’s Birthplace House in Oglethorpe St, (Wayne-Gordon House) which was built in 1823 for James Wayne a US Congressman and Savannah mayor before purchase by the Gordon family. After her marriage Juliette’s husband William Low upgraded the Lafayette Square mansion. But when William Low died in 1905 he left his estate to his mistress including the Lafayette Square house (built 1848). Juliette contested the will and got the Andrew Low House back whilst still living in England. In 1911 in England Juliette had founded the Girl Guides Movement. In 1912 she returned to Savannah and established the movement in the United States. Juliette lived in Andrew Low house from 1912 until her death in 1927. The Girl Scouts of America purchased the Wayne-Gordon House in 1953 to turn Juliette’s birthplace into a museum, and her Andrew Low house carriage house for the First Girl Guide headquarters.
Some recommendations for your free afternoon in Savannah.
1. So much is possible because General Sherman spared burning Savannah when he reached it on 10th December 1864. General Hardee of the Confederacy had 10,000 troops entrenched in the city. After a short battle Sherman opened up his links to the Union navy near Savannah and obtained guns and ammunition for an attack. Sherman surrounded the city and then advised General Hardee to surrender or be attacked or face slow starvation as all supplies in would be cut. Hardee fled with his troops up the Savannah River and the mayor of Savannah went out to Sherman and surrendered the city without a shot fired. Sherman entered the city and established his headquarters there. On 20th December he telegraphed President Lincoln "I beg to present you as a Christmas gift the City of Savannah, with one hundred and fifty guns and plenty of ammunition, also about twenty-five thousand bales of cotton." You can visit Sherman’s headquarters in Green-Meldrum House (1853) in Madison Square next to St. John’s Episcopal.
2. Harper-Fowlkes House, on Orleans Square built in 1842 for the Gardiner family. It has had numerous owners. The last owner Alida Fowlkes restored and redecorated the house and left it to the Society of the Cincinnati upon her death in 1985. They still run it and the tours are less formal than those by the Savannah Preservation Society. You can touch things! The Society was formed in 1783 to preserve the ideals of the American Revolution (it has nothing to do with the city of Cincinnati). To join the Society one of your male ancestors has to have been an Officer of the Continental Army for at least three years or have been an officer killed in battle during the War of Independence.
3. Davenport House on Columbia Square (1820). This red brick Federal style house was built for a builder as a show case of his skills. It was saved from demolition by the Savannah Foundation in 1955 which was formed for this purpose. Since then they have saved dozens of historic houses. It is good to hear the story of the Savannah Foundation. Davenport died of yellow fever and his wife took over. During the Civil War she had three sons fighting for the Union and three for the Confederacy.
So Suite SPA
Image by SofitelSoBangkok
So Suite Spa featuring master bedroom, spacious living room and en-suite spa treatment facility for private indulgence.