As you delight yourself strolling the romantic streets of Savannah, the “Paris of the South” go visit Fort Jackson, Georgia oldest still standing brick fort. Pay tribute to our country’s Revolutionary and Civil War heroes such as James Jackson (the fort is named after him) whose last words were: “If you cut my heart out, you will find Georgia engraved on it”.
In 1807 President Jefferson authorized the development of a national defense system of fortifications. One such construction was the wharf lot at Five Fathom Hole on the Savannah River that will become Fort James Jackson.
The museum is open daily from 9 AM to 5 PM (closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Days). Admission is $4.25 for adults, $3.75 for students, seniors, military, and AAA members. Children 6 and under get in FREE.
Interesting historic facts:
• James Jackson, “The Prince of Duelists”, was the first person to hold all major political offices in a state: U.S. Senator, U.S. Representative and Governor.
• Fort Jackson started as a brick fortification over an old earthen battery, called “Mud Fort”. First active duty by local militia and Federal troupes took place in the War of 1812. The moat, drawbridge, barracks, privies and powder magazine were added in the 1840 – 1850s
• Capt. William McRee Supervising engineer was just 21 years old when he started construction of Fort Jackson.In a letter to McRee General Thomas Pinckney wrote: “You will proceed with all possible dispatch to complete the fortifications of Fort Jackson…P.S. I have just received official notification of the declaration of war which had taken place on June 18 and took nearly six days for the news to reach Savannah.”
• During Civil War, Fort Jackson served as the Confederacy headquarters for the Savannah River defenses which also included underwater “torpedoes” mines and the ironclads C.S.S Atlanta, Savannah and Georgia (this can still be seen floating in the river).
•The entrance to the museum and the gift shop are in the former Tybee Depot, built in 1888 to mark the beginning of the train line between Savannah and Tybee Island. It had to be hauled by truck then moved down Savannah River by barge to its present location at Fort Jackson.
• Fort Jackson is currently the only historic fort in the United States delivering cannon salutes to passing military vessels.
Family attractions near Fort Jackson (and the custom Google Map)
• Tybee Island Lighthouse (tallest and oldest in Georgia) ($6 admission includes access to Tybee Island Museum)
• Fort Pulaski, site of the most memorable Civil War bombardments ($3 admission)
Be a proud American at historic Sea Islands forts!
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