Monday, September 30, 2013

Savannah, Georgia

The Savannah River consists of two arms with islands between.  Savannah lies on the lower arm and is easily accessible from the St. Rt. 17 bridge.

Around the corner and down the street is the visitors center and a small museum.

Savannah was a planned city with 24 parks placed every two blocks.  At the end nearest the river was an experimental garden designed to find out what would grow in the area and what could be used as a cash crop for export.

 Savannah is the birthplace and home of Juliet Gordon Low, founder of the Girl Scouts of America.  There is a nice display dedicated to  her in this museum.  The Gordons and the Lows were two of several very wealthy families in Savannah.  Juliet was on an European tour with her husband when she became bored with her life as an idle socialite and decided to spend the rest of her life on worthwhile pursuits.  Soon after she met Lord Baden-Powell, the founder of the Boy Scouts and Girl Guides in Britain.  I couldn't get a pic of her home because it was swathed in scaffolding while the outside is being redone.  Next to it is Chippewa Square where the movie Forrest Gump was filmed.  Next to the Andrew Low house is the first Girl Scout Headquarters.

Horseless carriage

Savannah is very tourist friendly.  There is on street parking, parking garages, small off street metered parking lots, and several trolley tours to choose from right in the parking lot of the visitors center.  We opted for one of these.  Our guide told us that the city buildings are all tiled with this white tile.  He said the locals call them the bathroom buildings.  We agreed they look like a lot of restrooms we've seen.

Interesting building front.  We learned that there is a lot of ironwork decorating the city.  Some of it is original hand-forged, most of it is cast.

There are a boatload of historic homes with stories.  This one was the first one with running water.

This one was the first one with electricity.

Along the riverfront is a row of shops and restaurants.  This one is for granddaughter Maddy. 

The waving girl.  Duane and I have seen this sculpture before--we think on St. Augustine, FL

City hall,  the pic doesn't really show it, but the dome is 23 carat gold.

This rail around the fountain above is described in the above sign.

The cotton exchange is now the Masonic Lodge

This street runs along the offices of the cotton graders.  They walked out of their offices and stood on these walkways judging the wagon loads of cotton at they were driven down the street.  The world-wide price of cotton was decided in two places:  Liverpool, England and Savannah, Georgia.

Strolling and relaxing room along the river.  The shops are behind me as I took the pic.

Interesting info explaining the importance of Savannah.

Love this sign holder

We left the river and walked into town to the (Catholic) Cathedral of St. John the Baptist.  This was the best pic I could get.  The front and the farther steeple were covered in scaffolding.

A guy on the street told us to come here for two things:  this mural of five saints.  Notice the middle one is holding his head in his hands

The man on the right is apparently sticking out his tongue in a gesture of derision.

Organ pipes in the choir loft 

Several movies were made in town.  This little cafe was featured in Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

The school is now part of SCAD--the Savannah College of Art and Design

Ivy covered gas light holder

A father of identical twin girls built these identical houses for his girls.  They argued about who would get which side!

The Mercer house was built by the grandfather of Johnny Mercer, famous singer/song writer.  It was used in the movie Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.  The murder scene took place in the lower left hand room where the chandelier is lit.

This fence is an exact replica of the fence surrounding Buckingham Palace.  Sorry for the tilt.  I took these pix from a moving trolley.

There are many fine restaurants in town.  We picked 5 Guys Hamburgers, with dessert at Leopolds.  The homemade hand-dipped is really good.

The Davenport House is credited with the start of efforts to save more historical buildings.  This one was slated to become a parking garage.  The double stairway was designed for women on one side, men on the other.  That way they could both ascend at the same time and the men couldn't see the ladies' ankles.  Such a scandal could lead to a shotgun wedding!

Stopped for gas on the way home--didn't think we were this tired!

We really enjoyed our visit to Savannah.  The traffic was light, the city is very tourist friendly and easy to get around.  Of course everything costs because the various non-profit Historical Societies are responsible for the upkeep of the sites.  There is something for everyone--parks, shopping, restaurants, museums, historical sites.  We didn't feel confused, overwhelmed or stressed as we did in Charleston.

Join us next time for more Savannah history.

Louise and Duane

1 comment:

Marsha Weaver said...

Wonderful tour. We love Savannah.

If you ever want a great book to read, read "In the Garden of Good and Evil." It is a true story set in Savannah. Love it.