A Stroll Along Savannah’s River Street

Savannah's River Street


A walk along Savannah’s River Street is a modern-day stroll back in time. If you listen carefully you can almost hear the cheers as the S.S. Savannah, the first steamship to cross the Atlantic, pulled away from the port on that May day in 1819. Or, perhaps the sounds of joy are those of General James Edward Oglethorpe and the 120 travelers of the ship “Anne” when, in 1733,  they landed on the bluff soon to be named Georgia, the 13th and final American colony. Savannah was Georgia’s first city. A closer inspection, though, just might reveal hundreds of present-day tourists making their way along the historic waterfront, exploring the 100-year-old cotton warehouses, now converted to shops, restaurants, and boutiques.

Passing under the Talmadge Bridge, the entrance to Savannah’s deep water ports and terminals, is one of the many cargo ships that dock each and every day. This one is making its way back to the open ocean and will, in just a few minutes, pass directly in front of our house.

The U.S. Coast Guard’s Barque Eagle and the HMS Bounty, which appeared in the film “Pirates of the Caribbean II” as the Edinburgh Trader, are scheduled to visit Savannah next May for the Tall Ships Challenge 2012. The ship below is currently docked on River Street.

Souvenir shops along the cobblestone street feature items from jewelry and clothing to seashells and…

A block over, on Bay Street, is where you’ll find sights such as this 209 year-old-bell, the oldest in Georgia, that once hung in the cupola of the City Exchange. A watchman rung the bell to signal the close of the business day, and to alert citizens of fire. The bell was imported from Amsterdam.

President George Washington presented this cannon, and others, to the Chatham Artillery (Savannah is in Chatham County), after he visited Savannah in 1791. This cannon was manufactured in Strasburg in 1756

Savannah was once ranked first as a cotton seaport on the Atlantic and second in the entire world. The cotton exchange building, completed in 1887, was the center for that particular commerce. The building now serves as the offices of the Savannah chamber of commerce. The figure you see at the top of the dome is actually a live hawk that flew away just as I snapped the picture..

11 replies
  1. J.D.
    J.D. says:

    Like Claudia, I haven’t been in years, but I’ve always enjoyed it. Drove over for a casual weekend once, never considering that is was Saint Patrick’s Day. LOL.

  2. Sandy Tooley
    Sandy Tooley says:

    Great pics! Hubby and I visited in 2005 when we embarked on a “haunted hotel tour” which took us to Balsam Mtn Inn in NC, Jekyl Island in GA and a hotel in Savannah the name of which escapes me but I think the entire town is haunted. Just relocated to SC and I’m 40 minutes from Savannah.

  3. Ruby Johnson
    Ruby Johnson says:

    I grew up in a town north of Savannah (Charleston, S.C.) and they both have the same kind of ambience. I have always loved how the early city planners for Savannah layed out the city around parks. Makes it so beautiful. The historical preservation and restoration really is great in the city. You’re lucky you live in such a lovely place. I live in Texas now, but nothing compares to a really beautiful historical southern city on the coast.

  4. Pat Marinelli
    Pat Marinelli says:

    Hey, Glynn, when I was in Savannah, there was a restraining order for Mercer House. The tour buses weren’t allowed to even stop al all, not even long enough to take a picture.

    But on the upside, we met Mandy and she let us tour Joe’s house. We were there viviting with her for well over an hour. We even went out a window and up on the roof. What an amazing view!

  5. LR Hunter
    LR Hunter says:

    Love that you’re sharing these photos and the narrative with them. I think I’ve been to Savannah once, but I was too young to remember–only about 22–when I was TDY at PI. Thing about Georgia is the dirt. You hear “red dirt” and you think you can imagine it, but really, there is no imagining it. You have to see it.

    Lucky you are to live by the sea, and a warm one, too. Ok, yes, there are bugs–but there are ships!

    Thanks for sharing these images and thoughts with us.

  6. Pat Marinelli
    Pat Marinelli says:

    Thanks for the memories!

    As a Jersey Yankee, my sister took me to Savannah for my birthday where I saw my first redneck pickup with the Stars and Bars flying and gun rack in the back window on River Street on a Saturday night. Awesome!

    I’d go back to Savannah in a heart beat if I could. Never got to see Charleston and I’ll be you will have a heavenly view when those tall ships come in next year.

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