Wormsloe State Historic Site
The one-of-a-kind Wormsloe State Historic Site (7601 Skidaway Rd., 912/353-3023, www.gastateparks.org/info/wormsloe, Tues.–Sun. 9 a.m.–5 p.m., $5 adults, $3.50 children) was first settled by Noble Jones, who landed with Oglethorpe on the Anne and fought beside him in the War of Jenkin’s Ear. One of the great renaissance men of history, this soldier was also an accomplished carpenter, surveyor, forester, botanist, and physician.
Wormsloe became famous for its bountiful gardens, so much so that the famed naturalist William Bartram mentioned them in his diary after a visit in 1765 with father John Bartram.
After his death, Noble Jones was originally buried in the family plot on the waterfront, but now his remains are at Bonaventure Cemetery. Jones’ descendants donated 822 acres to The Nature Conservancy, which transferred the property to the state. The house, dating from 1828, and 65.5 acres of land are still owned by his family, and no, you can’t visit them.
The stunning entrance canopy of 400 live oaks, Spanish moss dripping down the entire length, is one of those iconic images of Savannah that will stay with you the rest of your life. A small interpretive museum, one-mile nature walk, and occasional living history demonstrations make this a great site for the entire family.
Walk all the way to the Jones Narrows to see the ruins of the original 1739 fortification, one of the oldest and finest examples of tabby construction in the United States. No doubt the area’s abundance of Native American shell middens, where early inhabitants discarded their oyster shells, came in handy for its construction. You can see one nearby.
Getting to Wormsloe State Historic Site
To get to Wormsloe, take Victory Drive (U.S. 80) to Skidaway Road. Go south on Skidaway Road for about 10 miles and follow the signs; you’ll see the grand entrance on your right.
© Jim Morekis from Moon Charleston & Savannah, 4th Edition