Tag Archives: –CAMDEN COUNTY GA–

Crooked River, Camden County

Fog Bank on Crooked River GA Atlantic Salt Marsh Habitat Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

Heavy fog dominated the landscape when I arrived at Crooked River, so thick that it was nearly an hour before I was able to get a photograph.

Oak in Fog on Cliffs of Crooked River Surreal Magical Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

The easiest access to the river is via Crooked River State Park, situated on Elliot’s Bluff, near St. Marys.

Atlantic Shell Midden Forest Palmetto Thicket Crooked River GA Camden County Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2014

Ancient shell middens characterize many of the forests along the river. Oaks and palmettos are the dominant plants.

crooked river ga camden county photograph copyright brian brown vanishing coastal georgia usa 2014

Red Buckeye (Aesculus pavia) can be found in abundance in the forest understory in early March. It’s also known as firecracker plant.

Crooked River GA Camden County Atlantic Coastal River Salt Marsh Shell Middens Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2014

Marshy banks are found below the high bluffs.

Crooked River GA Camden County Twisted Branches of Old Tree Bizarre Formation Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2014

Crooked River GA Ancient Cedar Twisted Trunk Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2014

Twisted trunks and branches like the ones seen above are common along Crooked River.

Saw Palmetto Thicket Banks of Crooked River GA Camden County Salt Marshed Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

 

 

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Houston McIntosh Sugar Mill, Circa 1825, St. Marys

Tabby Sugar Works and Arrowroot Starch Factory of John Houstoun McIntosh Early Tabby Structure Camden County GA Interior View Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

Built circa 1825, this sugar mill and arrowroot starch factory was the industrial component to John Houston* McIntosh’s New Canaan Plantation. McIntosh was born in 1773 in what is now McIntosh County. After living for a time in Florida and involvement in a plot to annex East Florida, McIntosh came back to Georgia. He acquired two plantations in Camden County. Marianna was one and New Canaan, site of the sugar works seen here, was the other. Thomas Spalding of Sapelo Island is thought to have been his mentor in this enterprise. It’s located across from the entrance to Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay in a publicly accessible park on Charlie Smith Sr. Parkway (Georgia Highway 40 Spur).

*The Georgia Historical Society marker placed on the site over 50 years ago uses the spelling Houstoun for McIntosh’s middle name. I’m not sure why the discrepancy exists, but Taylor Davis has done more recent research, notably exposing the long-held “Spanish mission myth”, so I will defer to his his spelling.

Tabby Sugar Works and Arrowroot Starch Factory of John Houstoun McIntosh Early Tabby Structure Camden County GA Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

Taylor P. Davis writes in his thesis, Tabby: The Enduring Building Material of Coastal Georgia (Athens, 2011):”The Houston McIntosh Sugar Mill, built during the 1820s, contains probably the most intact and expansive plantation era tabby ruins in this…area. This two-storied, sprawling complex, complete with columns, is the remainder of John Houston McIntosh’s sugar processing mill in connection to his New Canaan Plantation sugar cane production. The mill consisted of three main sections: a milling room, a boiler room, and a curing room. This sugar mill also led local and visiting authors and intern local historians to reinterpret this area’s history. It was here that W. J. Hoxie, contributor to the Savannah Morning News, wrote of his imaginative thoughts of the harrowing tales of Spanish friars defending themselves against a “great siege” or fiercely battling off “pirate bands” all while trying to save the souls of the “savage natives”. It was hard for him to believe that such a well-built structure could have been used for agricultural purposes. In his article, Hoxie is quoted as saying “I have yet discovered any published work that throws any light on the origin and history of this building.” But the damage was done. Savannah Morning News readers were taken by this fictional idea. This helped to start and spread the “Spanish Mission myth” regarding tabby construction. This myth was perpetuated by James T. Vocelle’s book, History of Camden County, where he states as fact that these tabby ruins were that of the Spanish missions. For decades it was thought that all of the plantation era tabby ruins were that of the lost Spanish missions. Later this error in the chronology of tabby would be corrected, and the literature on the subject from then on would reflect the annotation.”

Images of the Sugar Mill & Arrowroot Starch Factory

Tabby Sugar Works and Arrowroot Starch Factory of John Houstoun McIntosh Early Tabby Architecture Beam Support Ruins Camden County GA Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

Tabby Sugar Works and Arrowroot Starch Factory of John Houstoun McIntosh Early Tabby Structure Camden County GA Columns Posts Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

Tabby Sugar Works and Arrowroot Starch Factory of John Houstoun McIntosh Early Tabby Structure St. Marys Camden County GA Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

Tabby Sugar Works and Arrowroot Starch Factory of John Houstoun McIntosh Early Tabby Structure Camden County GA Interior View Ruins Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

Tabby Sugar Works and Arrowroot Starch Factory of John Houstoun McIntosh Early Tabby Structure Arches Camden County GA Doorways Portals Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

Tabby Sugar Works and Arrowroot Starch Factory of John Houstoun McIntosh Early Tabby Structure St. Marys Camden County GA Posts Supports Columns Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

For researchers interested in the Houston genealogy, G. Cole notes: The name is properly spelled “Houstoun.” John Houstoun McIntosh was born to George McIntosh (son of John Mohr Mackintosh) and Ann Priscilla Houstoun (dau. of Sir Patrick Houstoun and Priscilla Dunbar.)

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St. John Missionary Baptist Church, St. Marys

st-john-missionary-baptist-church-african-american-vernacular-st-marys-ga-photograph-copyright-brian-brown-vanishing-coastal-georgia-usa-2014

This small vernacular chapel, retaining its original steeple, is located near the entrance to Crooked River State Park.

 

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Tarboro Mercantile

Tarboro Mercantile General Store Feed Seed Country Store Camden County GA Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

Tarboro is an isolated community in Camden County’s interior, near White Oak.

 

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Camden County Courthouse, 1928, Woodbine

Camden County Courthouse Woodbine GA One of Two Gothic Revival in Georgia Palm Tree Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

Though it’s extremely difficult to photograph with the palms crowding out the facade, this courthouse is worth checking out when you’re in the area. It’s one of only two Gothic Revival courthouses in Georgia. The other is in Barrow County. This style is rarely found in public buildings in Georgia. Julian de Bruyn Cops of Savannah was the architect.

Camden County Courthouse Woodbine GA One of Two Gothic Revival in Georgia Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing Coastal Georgia USA 2014

National Register of Historic Places

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St. Marys Riverfront

St. Marys has a very nice waterfront, great for walking or just hanging out.

 

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Sandiford-Goodbread House, 1870, St. Marys

This is now used as a bed and breakfast inn. The local historic marker dates it as circa 1885, but on the inn’s website, it’s dated to 1870. I’m not sure which is correct. It was built by Samuel Burns, who sold it to Ralph Sandiford. In 1901, steamboat captain Walton Goodbread (Gutbrodt) purchased the home. For a time after that it was used for overflow guests of the Riverview Inn, and finally, before its present incarnation it served as Dixon’s Boarding House.

St. Marys Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

 

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Bank of Camden County, 1911, St. Marys

St. Marys Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

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John Rudulph House, 1874, St. Marys

St. Marys Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

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General John Floyd House, 1830, St. Marys

General Floyd was born on 3 October 1769 in Beaufort, South Carolina, where he learned carpentry. In 1795, he moved to McIntosh County and engaged in boat building. He was in Camden County by 1800. He served as a brigadier general during the Creek Wars from 30 August 1813 to 8 March 1814 and from 17 October 1814 to 10 March 1815. From 1820 to 1827, Floyd was a member of the Georgia House of Representatives. From 4 March 1827 to 3 March 1829, he served the state as a member of the U. S. House of Representatives. He died near Jefferson, Georgia on 24 June 1839.

An interesting debate has arisen as to the identity of the house, to which I’ll only offer both opinions.

Marguerite Matthews, the fourth great-granddaughter of General Floyd and author of several genealogies of the family,  writes: John Floyd was born in Hilton Head, Beaufort District, South Carolina, the only child of Captain Charles Floyd and Mary Fendin. When he was sixteen he was apprenticed to a house carpenter for five years. He became so proficient, he was offered an early release but refused, preferring to fulfill his contract. He was privately tutored in a variety of subjects, including higher mathematics and French, by a distant cousin. John Floyd married Isabella Mariah Hazzard in 1793 in Beaufort District, South Carolina. (They had twelve children). In 1795, Charles Floyd along with his wife, Mary, and John Floyd along with his wife, Isabella Maria, moved to McIntosh County, Georgia where they settled on adjoining farms. In 1800, the Floyds again moved to Camden County, Georgia. They purchased large tracts of land in an area now known as Floyd’s Neck. Here they built two plantations one mile apart: Fairfield and Bellevue.Brigadier-General John Floyd owned town houses in St. Marys, Camden County, Georgia. She further asserts: The house labeled General John Floyd House, 1830 should be:
WILLIAM JAMES ROSE HOUSE, 1827. According to the Camden County Deed books for Lot No. 24 [now called Block 24], eastern portion facing Osborne Street, St. Marys, GA: Aug. 1788: James Seagrove owned the entire Lot No. 24 (Founder’s Lottery) 08 Aug. 1788: James Seagrove & wife, Ann, sold eastern half of Lot No. 24 to Nathaniel Pendleton of Savannah who purchased this lot for his son, Edmund Henry Pendleton (CCG Deed Bk. BC, p. 42 & 43) 01 Feb. 1825: Edmund H. Pendleton & wife, Frances, sold to Henry Sadler, part of Lot No. 24 facing Osborne Street (CCG Deed Bk. L, p. 197 & 108) 01 Jan. 1827: Henry Sadler & wife, Mary, sold part of Lot No. 24 to William Rose & Hugh Rose, merchants of Savannah. (CCG Deed Bk. L, p. 214 & 215) — commencing 60 ft. from South corner of Thomas Payne’s Lot on Osborne Street, then 100 ft. Southwardly to John Debrot’s line then Westwardly 200 ft. to Robert Rudolph’s line then Northwardly 100 ft. to the line purchased for a Masonic Lodge and library, then Eastwardly 200 ft. to the place of beginning. [Currently address is 213 Osborne Street]. William James Rose and his brother Hugh Rose were both b. in Scotland and migrated to Savannah, Georgia. They were merchants in Savannah. William James Rose married Mary Eliza Turner in 1828 in St. Marys, CCG. She was the step-daughter of John Boog and Isabella Kelly~King Turner Boog. William James Rose was the nephew of John Boog. William James Rose built the house [currently 213 Osborne Street]. The timbers were hewn in Savannah in or prior to 1830. (“Camden’s Challenge” – A History of Camden County GA, comp. by Marguerite Reddick; and in “Forgotten History” in which owner Wil L. Stucki had appraised by an historical architect – he said the Roman Numeral Numbered roof timbers were dated as early as 1830; personal phone call with Wil Stucki & Marguerite Mathews in 2009 in which Mr. Stucki said, “My friend, Mills Lane Jr., well-known in his field, is an historical architect in Savannah, drove to St. Marys to evaluate the house. He said that the Roman numerals etched into the roofing rafters indicated that the house was built prior to 1830.”). William James Rose died in 1832. Mary Mary Eliza Turner Rose re-married to Dr. Frederick Judson. Mary Eliza Turner Rose Judson died in 1837 in St. Marys. (Dr. Judson did not own that house). No deed of sale by Rose or by Mary Eliza or by Judson. No deed of purchase by Generak John Floyd. 20 Dec. 1837: John Floyd and wife, Isabella, sold to Thomas E. Hardee (Camden County Deed Bk. N, p. 125): Commencing at 100 feet from the North East corner of said square, then running South on Osborne Street 160 feet, then West 200 feet, then North 160 feet, then East 200 feet to the place of commencement. [Currently address is 213 Osborne Street] Why, then, isn’t the house called William James Rose House, 1827?

Fred Mercier disagrees. He notes:  There was an error in Ms. Mathews interpretation. The referenced 1827 purchase by the Roses begins 60 ft. from Thomas Payne’s property and continues 100 ft. along Osborne St. The General Floyd house is actually located on the 60 ft. of land between the Payne property and the Rose purchase. While there are no purchase documents existing, Floyd eventually owns both adjoining lots (referenced in his 1832 will) and will sell the entire 160ft along Osborne St. to Thomas Hardee in 1837. The Rose’s never owned the 60 ft. along Osborne that includes the Floyd house. The 1830 Camden County Tax digest lists Floyd paying taxes on an “unfinished house” on Osborne St. valued at $500. A later tax digest values his St. Marys property at $3,000. No house was built on the adjoining lot until the early twentieth century. Based on framing of the house, there are clues that an earlier and smaller structure may have existed and been expanded by Floyd. A potential mystery waiting to be solved!

St. Marys Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

 

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