The Andrew Low House, located at 329 Abercorn Street overlooking Lafayette Square, offers insight into life in Savannah more than 150 years ago. Owned and operated by The National Society of The Colonial Dames of America in the State of Georgia, this Italianate-style stucco-over-brick building was originally designed by architect John Norris and built for wealthy cotton magnate Andrew Low between 1847 and 1849.
Andrew Low came to Savannah from Scotland in the late 1820s as an ambitious teenager with plans to make a name for himself in the United States. In the 19th century, ships owned by A. Low & Co. supplied the ocean routes between Savannah and Liverpool, loaded with bales of cotton worth millions of dollars. As a result of the cotton boom and his sharp business acumen, Andrew Low eventually became Savannah’s wealthiest resident.
Today, the Andrew Low House stands as one of this successful cotton entrepreneur’s most enduring achievements. The home features a distinctive sandstone trim entrance, guarded by a pair of cast iron lions. Defined by balconies with ornate ironwork and shuttered piazzas, the home’s first story is set below street level and surrounded by a dry moat. The interior has been carefully appointed with gorgeous period antiques, stunning silver and spectacular crystal chandeliers.
In one of the home’s most innovative details, a 500-gallon cistern in the attic originally held water that could be piped to the kitchen and the bathroom, marking one of the city’s earliest indoor plumbing systems.
A number of prominent guests visited the home over the years including British author William Makepeace Thackeray and Confederate General Robert E. Lee. Andrew Low’s daughter-in-law, Juliette Gordon Low, founded the Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. in the parlor of this stately home. Juliette, known as “Daisy,” died at the home in 1927, making the Andrew Low House a popular stop for visiting Girl Scout troops from across the United States. The Low residence was lovingly restored to its former grandeur by the Colonial Dames of America and has been open to the public as a house museum since 1952.
For more information about the Andrew Low House, which offers guided tours, call (912) 233-6854.