Imagine driving down a majestic rural avenue, lined on either side by over 400 stately live oak trees, and emerging at the site of Georgia’s oldest plantation. The 1.5 miles entrance to Wormsloe Historic Site in Savannah evokes a different era, turning back the hand of time to 18th-century Georgia.
Wormsloe is the only standing architectural remnant in Savannah from the founding of Georgia,” explains Wormsloe’s ranger Michael Jacobs. A State Historic Site, today Wormsloe is run by the Department of Natural Resources.
The former home and plantation of Noble Jones, one of the original colonists who arrived in Savannah with General James Oglethorpe in 1773, Wormsloe offers a precious glimpse into the lives of Georgia’s earliest European settlers. The Jones house was originally constructed of “tabby,” a mixture of sand, water, lime and oyster shells. Much of the oyster shells used to build the house came from shell mounds left behind from ancient Indian settlements on the site thousands of years earlier.
The tabby ruins of the original Jones house lies nestled within 822 acres of Georgia forest, sheltered by peaceful marshes to the east and the south. When the Jones family lived at Wormsloe in the mid-1700’s, their home was strategically surrounded by eight-foot-tall tabby walls to protect Jones and him family from Spanish or Indian attack.
An enormous stone monument and a wrought iron fence mark the first family burial site at Wormsloe. Noble Jones was buried at Wormsloe in 1775 alongside his wife Sarah and, later, their youngest son Indigo. In 1875, George Wymberley Jones DeRenne, a descendent of Noble and Sarah Jones, had Nobel Jones’s remains moved to another cemetery and subsequently placed the monument “to save from oblivion the graves of his kindred.”
Wormsloe also features a Colonial Life Area, representing some of the typical outbuildings on the property and information about the gardens and crops grown at Wormsloe in the 18th century.
Located on Skidaway Road on the Isle of Hope, Wormsloe Historic site is open Tuesday-Sunday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Closed Monday (except holidays), Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day. Admission is $8 Adults, $7.50 Seniors (62+), $4.50 Youths (6-17), $1.00 Children (5 & under). Group rates available with advance notice. For more information, please contact 912-353-3023.