Major William Horton was granted Jekyll Island by the Trustees of the colony of Georgia in 1738, and he constructed this home in 1743. The Horton House is one of the oldest standing tabby structure exteriors in the state.
Horton was one of General James Oglethorpe’s top military aids and was in charge of troops garrisoned at Fort Frederica on nearby St. Simons Island. Horton farmed the island, producing crops to aid with supplying Ft. Frederica. This included hops and barley to produce Georgia’s first beer. Eventually, Horton added a warehouse to the site, of which remains still exist. His brewery, whose remains lie just down the road, supplied ale to troops and settlers at Fort Frederica on St. Simons Island. Today, the tabby ruins of Georgia’s first brewery have mostly fallen into DuBignon Creek.
The site also includes the cemetery of the DuBignon Family, which owned Jekyll from 1790-1886 and occupied the house as their home from 1790 until sometime in the mid-1800s. There you can see the grave of John Eugene DuBignon, who sold Jekyll Island to the Jekyll Island Club in the late 1800’s.
The Horton House is one of the oldest buildings in Georgia, and the site is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Preservation work on the site was made possible by a Save America’s Treasures grant from the National Park Service, and received an Excellence in Preservation award from the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation.
The Horton House historic site is open to the public.
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