We took a couple of hours today to explore Tybee Island which sits about 20 miles east of Savannah. While the island has historical significance, I must admit I was also hoping for a quaint beach town. The historical areas were interesting, but unfortunately there was no "quaintness" to be found. The island is just another beach town, with lots of hotels, motels and tourist traps. A little disappointing, but that's okay, we can still say we've been there (and done that).
Tybee Island Light Station continues to function today, its light reaching almost 18 miles out to sea. It is Georgia's oldest and tallest lighthouse, dating from 1773. The most significant fact about this light station is that it sits on its original site with all of the original support buildings.
Just across the road from the Light Station sits the remainder of Fort Screven which was built in 1885 as part of the coastal defense system. It was the site of troop training during the Spanish-American War, World War I and World War II. Part of it now houses the Tybee Museum.
Cockspur Lighthouse sits just off of Cockspur Island which is just west of Tybee Island and can be seen from US 80 or Fort Pulaski. It marks the South Channel of Savannah River. The lighthouse was built in 1854 and survived the bombardment of Fort Pulaski. Damaged in an 1881 storm which destroyed the keeper's residence, it continued to shine until 1909. It was relit this year.
Fort Pulaski sits on Cockspur Island and faces Savannah River. It was built between 1829 & 1844; one of the engineers was Robert E. Lee. It is the last of the forts built that are known as the Third System of coastal fortifications developed during the first half of the 19th century. These forts were of greater structural durability than earlier ones. Most of the 30 Third System forts built after 1816 still exist. Our Fort McHenry is a First System fort. Sorry, I got carried away. Anyway, Fort Pulaski gets its name from Count Casimir Pulaski, a Polish hero of the American Revolution who died in the unsuccessful siege of Savannah.
Just to show you how deep I am, two of the neatest things to me about the fort are the moat and the drawbridge! I guess it makes me think of all those fairy tales and how the princess is always safe inside the castle when there's a moat and a drawbridge. Goofy, huh? Still, it's pretty daunting to stand in the same place that those who fought for our freedoms stood almost 200 years ago. Not much has changed in all this time, has it? We're still fighting.
Well, that's it for our time here in Savannah. We leave Monday for Charleston. We'll spend the weekend recuperating from the hard work of sightseeing. :) I also need to get rid of a nasty cold. Pray for us as we travel on Monday. It's going to be SUCH an easy trip!! Only a couple of hours up the road. Nice.
Enjoy the pictures. As always, there are more on the web. Take care of each. Keep in touch. We love to hear from you. Until the next time . . .