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Archive for georgia

Miracle Water in Georgia

By Linda Tancs

Aptly named, Providence Spring in Andersonville, Georgia, is a matter of divine providence in Civil War lore. The story goes that thousands of Union soldiers were dying of thirst in the summer of 1864 at a prison camp in Andersonville, one of the largest Confederate military prisons during the war. The cries of thirst ended when a spring mysteriously erupted in the stockade. The site is covered with a memorial house and is accessible via a road behind the National POW Museum, part of Andersonville National Historic Site.

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The Debatable Land

By Linda Tancs

In the early 18th century, Europeans called the land lying between British South Carolina and Spanish Florida the “Debatable Land,” referring to a conflict of control of colonial Georgia arising between Spain and Britain. The dispute came to a head in 1742 when the British defeated the Spanish at Fort Frederica on St. Simons Island. Fort Frederica National Monument is the site of the archeological remnants of the fort built by James Oglethorpe (the colony’s founder). The island is accessible by car via the F.J. Torras Causeway and is the largest of what are now known as Georgia’s Golden Isles, a premier destination along its southern Atlantic coast.

A Master Builder in Savannah

By Linda Tancs

Isaiah Davenport was a self-made man from New England who settled in Savannah, Georgia. A master builder, he built for himself a stately, Federal-style home (circa 1820) and is credited with the building of other surviving homes in the city. Now the Davenport House Museum, his historic home initiated Savannah’s preservation movement when disrepair threatened its demolition in 1955. That movement is credited with preserving the historical identity of the city that visitors enjoy today. The house is one of the oldest brick structures in the city, with wood being more commonly used during the town’s earliest history. Located on Columbia Square in Savannah’s Historic Landmark District, the home is stop #9 on the Old Town Trolley route.

Palace of the South

By Linda Tancs

Hay House (Johnston-Felton-Hay) in Macon, Georgia, is designed in the Italian Renaissance Revival style, unusual for residential architecture, particularly considering the conventions of the antebellum South. Lived in by two families over three generations, it earned the moniker “Palace of the South” during the tenure of the Feltons (extended family of the Johnstons). A private house museum and National Historic Landmark, it spans four levels and is crowned by a three-story cupola. A model of wealth and good taste, most of the furnishings date from the Hay family’s occupancy, highlighted by the 1857 marble statue “Ruth Gleaning” by American expatriate sculptor Randolph Rogers.

The Castle on Peachtree

By Linda Tancs

An Atlanta landmark for decades, Georgia’s Rhodes Hall is affectionately known as “the castle on Peachtree.” The Romanesque Revival-style mansion was designed for one of the city’s wealthiest men, Rhodes Furniture founder Amos Rhodes. Thought to be inspired by his travels through the castles of the German Rhineland, it’s one of the few remaining mansions on Peachtree Street, the city’s most celebrated thoroughfare. Now a house museum and event venue, its massive exterior masonry is equally matched with superb interior appointments like its hallmark mahogany staircase and painted glass windows.

Shalom Y’all

By Linda Tancs

This Sunday marks the annual Shalom Y’all Food Festival in Savannah, Georgia, an event of Congregation Mickve Israel (one of the oldest synagogues in the United States).  Held in Forsyth Park from 11:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m., Jewish delicacies include homemade blintzes and challah, noodle kugel and potato latkes.  Food tickets can be purchased for a nominal fee, but admission to the festival grounds and entertainment is free.

Georgia’s Antebellum Trail

By Linda Tancs

What comes to mind when you think of an antebellum home?  Perhaps it’s something stately, with massive white columns introducing the frame.  That type of architecture is quite characteristic of the antebellum period–that is, the period predating America’s Civil War.   It’s a view of the Old South etched into a traveler’s mind.  Fortunately for Georgia, enough of it remains, despite Union General William Tecumseh Sherman’s destructive march through the state during the war.  He managed to spare a 100-mile trek from Macon to Athens.  Including the towns of Old Clinton, Gray, Milledgeville, Eatonton, Madison and Watkinsville, the Antebellum Trail offers stately mansions, a glimpse of frontier living, romantic covered bridges and so much more.  Seven welcome centers along the way will guide you through this part of the Old South’s rich history and charms.

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