Golden Isles

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Did You Know?

  • Sea Island was once called Long Island and St. Simons Island was once called St. Simon.
  • Aaron Burr, following his duel, sought refuge on Pierce Butler’s plantation at Hampton on St. Simons Island.
  • The mast post of the U.S. Constitution was cut on St. Simons Island from John Couper’s yard. During the Cotton States and International Exposition in 1895, the stump was displayed in Atlanta.
  • Eugenia Price’s trilogy Lighthouse, New Moon Rising and Beloved Invader chronicle the history of St. Simons Island and Christ Church.
  • Fort Frederica, established by General James Oglethorpe in 1736, was at that point the largest British military installation in North America.
  • Residents burned the St. Simons Lighthouse in 1861, so that it would not be used as a navigational aid for occupying Yankee forces.
  • Robert E. Lee ordered that residents to evacuate the Georgia coast in 1861 at the beginning of the War Between the States.
  • In 1839, Fanny Kemble, while visiting the site of the town and fort at Frederica, commented that those were the first ruins she had seen in all of North America.
  • Thomas Butler King of Retreat Plantation was collector of the port of San Francisco in the 1850s.
  • Anna Matilda Page King’s roses at Retreat Plantation were so fragrant the sailors claimed they could smell them while at sea.
  • The mill period on St. Simons Island brought prosperity to island families following the Civil War. The Dodge-Meigs Lumber Company purchased Hamilton Plantation in 1876. Timbers were later sawn for the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge.