"Monday 5 Things" with D. Paul Graham


Monday 5 Things…..285…..

On this day in 1733, General James Oglethorpe rowed a boat up the Savannah river.  He and a small group of 120 settlers, who arrived on the ship “Anne”, landed at Yamacraw Bluff (near what is now Bay and Bull Street).  On that day he met with Chief Tomochichi and Yamacraw Indians and the colony of Georgia, and the city of Savannah, were founded.  Today’s M5T celebrates the 285th birthday of the Grande Dame of the South.

1.  The Last and First

Georgia, the 13th and final colony of America, was named in honor of King George II, with Savannah holding the distinction of being the first urban designed city in America.   Oglethorpe originally planned the city with twenty-four squares featuring wide streets and parks that served as meeting places for residents.  Today, twenty-two squares remain.

2.  The Charm

Southern hospitality is alive and well, even to this day.  The charm of to-go cups for adult beverages, tea that is sweet and cold, streets lined with centuries-old oak tree canopies, and one of the biggest St. Patrick’s Day parties in the world. Some of the politest people in the world greet the almost fourteen million people who visit this incredible city each year.    

3.  The Cotton

The cotton gin was invented on a plantation just outside of Savannah, transforming the global cotton industry, and for some time the world’s cotton prices were set on the steps of the Savannah Cotton Exchange.

4.  The Gift

General Sherman entered and captured Savannah in 1862 in his infamous “March to the Sea” during the Civil War.  Sherman’s troops were stationed and housed just outside the city in what is now known as Savannah Quarters, where your scribe has lived for the past decade.  In December of 1862, Sherman wrapped the city up and presented it to President Lincoln as a Christmas present.

5.  The Places and People

The Pirates House, the Herb House, The Olde Pink House, the Girl Guides, The Telfair Academy and the First African Baptist Church were all founded in Savannah in the late 1700’s and early 1800’s and are still in existence today.   Johnny Mercer, Ben Tucker, Paula Deen, Lady Chablis, Gene Sauers, Hollis Stacey, Clarence Thomas, Sahib Shihab, Joseph Habersham, Sonny Seiler and the UGA line of Dawgs as well as the Savannah College of Art and Design have all impacted not only Savannah, but the world.  And when you sing “Jingle Bells” this Christmas, remember it was written in Savannah.

Here’s to almost three centuries of happy birthdays to the Hostess City of the South, the jewel of the Low Country, and to one of the most charming and welcoming cities in the world!

© 2018 D. Paul Graham, all rights reserved. 

D. Paul Graham is passionate about people, culture, photography and business.  He has embraced his wanderlust with his travels around the globe, and is at peace with his need for spirited drives in all things automotive. 

You can find M5T each Monday here on www.southmag.com  and by friending D. Paul Graham on Facebook.  Paul is also a contributing photographer to South Magazine.  His photographic work can be found on Instagram @dpgraham and at www.imageGRAHAM.com.  Your feedback is always welcome.  Email Paul at dpg@imagegraham.com