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Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Jekyll Island

I made it to Curves this morning! While I still do NOT like exercising, I find that I miss it. Sick, aren't I??? :) But, I am proud of myself for continuing to search out local Curves and getting there while on the road.

Our goal today was to explore Jekyll Island and we accomplished that. Our weather turned very muggy, humid, and overcast. Not the best day for sightseeing, but that's the way it goes. Or, as our good friends, Darrell & Judy, say "it is what it is." :)

You can read about Jekyll Island and its colorful history here. But I'll give you a synopsis from that site. The island is 7 miles long and 1.5 miles wide. It is surrounded by water (obviously!) and has quite a bit of marshland, which is quite lovely.

Of course the first inhabitants of the island were Native Americans. The first significant European settler was Major William Horton who received a land grant in 1735. The remnants of his second home which was built in 1743 is still on the island; the first having been destroyed in a battle with the Spaniards in 1742.

Also found near Horton's homesite is the burial ground of the DuBignon family, a French family, who acquired Jekyll Island in 1800. This family would continue to influence life on the island for the next century. Two of Christophe DuBignon's grandsons were indicted in 1858 for allegedly being involved in illegal slave trading. They were later acquitted of this charge.

It was in 1886 that Jekyll Island began its reign as a vacation spot for the wealthy. This elite club was known as the Jekyll Island club and boasted members such as William Rockefeller, William Vanderbilt, J.P. Morgan, and Joseph Pulitzer. There is a building on the island in which these men, and others, had offices and apartments.

Jekyll Island Club Hotel
Offices/Apartment building
The island continued to be a private playground for the rich & famous until 1947 when the state of Georgia purchased it in order to turn it into a state park. The historic district encompasses 240 acres and includes many of the original buildings.

One area that was pretty cool was Driftwood Beach. A short walk from the road, we came upon a beach filled with very old, very dead trees that had been uprooted and left to decay on the beach. Some of these trees were quite large as you can see from the picture below. That's a person in there! You can also see St. Simons Island from this beach.

We enjoyed our visit to Jekyll Island. We found it beautiful and very peaceful. Of course, I can't imagine that the peacefulness we experienced would be found in the heart of the summer. :) There are many, many hotels, motels, vacation homes, and a campground which I'm sure fill to the brim with families wanting to play at the beach. There are miles and miles of walking/bike paths that help you explore the island. These paths are shaded by various trees that are adorned with Spanish moss. Even though I know that Spanish moss is filled with tiny critters, I just love the look of it.
You can find more pictures of various "cottages" of the wealthy as well as of historical info on our picture website which is listed under "Favorite Websites."

We're off tomorrow for Florida. We'll be staying in Kissimmee for the next week and will also visit Mickey & Minnie a couple of times while we're there. Jason, Lindsay & Reagan are coming down Sunday - I can't wait to see them!

Until the next time . . .


  1. I've been there!!! My spring break my senior year at Messiah 4 friends and I drove all night to go to Daytona. We stopped at Jekyll Island to watch the sunrise! That's all we did though....sit on the beach to watch the sunrise and then off to Daytona we went! :)