We arrived at our work camping site near Savannah on January 2, so we’ve been here now a little over 6 weeks. We’ve got about 6 more weeks to go before we move on to our next location. But, while we’re here I want to see everything Savannah has to offer! We went to Savannah again last week for a part of the day with a traveling nurse we met that’s also staying here at the campground while she’s working here for a couple months. We enjoyed walking around the downtown squares again. I still have a few more things to tell you about Savannah but it will probably be in the next post.
One thing I have to remind myself about work camping is that it does mean you’re supposed to work, too. Even though we choose where we want to go and we get to tour and enjoy the area, we did commit to work X number of hours each week. I’ve been averaging about 23 hours a week. Dave’s been working about the same, maybe a little more. We work in exchange for our campsite as well as pay for hours over an agreed amount of work time.
Savannah has so many cool historic sites to visit. It’s been called an open air museum by some. It reminds me of visiting the Smithsonian in D.C. and knowing I’ll never get to see everything and know the story about these historic buildings, statues, people and sites.
Here are a few more sites we visited – The Low House, The Church known as the Jingle Bell Church and lunch today at Zunzi’s.
Let’s start with Zunzi’s. We had lunch there today.It’s located downtown Savannah on York Street. The owners Johnny and Gabriella Debeer have another location in Atlanta. It’s very small, but a fun place to visit. It’s a walk up diner with a line usually down the sidewalk. They say their menu is influenced by the owners South African, Swiss, Italian and Dutch heritage. When we arrived, they asked if we’ve been there before, if we had any food allergies and offered us a little sample cup of their chicken, two sausages and our choice of their many sauces. I did not try the “Shit Yeah” sauce!
Once we ordered, we took our carryout boxes and drinks around the corner to their comfortable outside tables and chairs. They also offer free Wifi and drink refills. To get your refill, you go in what looks like the backdoor to their restaurant, but they meet you there and take care of the refill for you. It’s another one of those you don’t want to miss places. One of the drivers on the Old Town Trolley Tour buses pointed it out when we drove past.
If you can’t read what it says on the cup, it’s this: “ZUNZI’S PROMISE TO YOU. Here at Zunzi’s, we want you to have such a great experience that you can’t help from saying Hell, Yeah! If at any point you don’t feel that way, let us know and we’ll make it right. We Promise.”
It was fun and the food was delicious. If you get to Savannah, add it to your must see list.
The next place I’ll tell you about is the church known as the “Jingle BellChurch“. In the early 1800s, a group of wealthy, liberal-minded Englishmen interested in building wealth through the cotton industry migrated to Savannah. When they couldn’t find a church to attend, they formed the Savannah Unitarian Society. They eventually built a church which has a very interesting history. Too much to tell about here so go online and check it out. In May of 1851, they hired a minister named John Pierpont, Jr who had a brother named James. James served as the church music director and organist. While serving there, he wrote and copyrighted a song called “One Horse Open Sleigh” and that’s how the church became known as the “Jingle Bell Church”.
The Unitarian church wasn’t very popular in Savannah. There were attempts to burn it down, it went broke a couple times and moved a couple times. You can now see it in Troup Square at East Harris and Habersham Streets.
The last site in this post is the Andrew Low House. Andrew Low was another one who migratedfrom England to build wealth as a cotton broker. He built the house in 1849. He died in 1886,the same year his son,William MacKay Low, married Juliette Gordon. William inherited the home from his father and they lived there for a while but spent most of their married life in England.
Stop 10 on the Old Town Trolley Tour is River Street. Appropriately named since it’s the street beside the Savannah river. This was probably the first street built in Savannah since it was used to deliver commodities to the city from the ships that sailed up the river from the Atlantic ocean. The Atlantic is only 18 miles from Savannah’s River Street. The city sits up high with a significant drop off to the river. This created a major problem for the sailing crew to get their products and supplies from the ship to the city above. Because it made a good look out point for the military Savannah was built at this location
Originally, they tried to carry supplies up the cliffs to the city. That failed. Another attempt was to make some sort of a hoist system with ropes and pulleys. Because of the sandy soil, everything kept coming loose and that failed also. They couldn’t get any leverage to carry anything up. One solution was to dig a tunnel which worked and I’ll write more about that later. Another solution was to use the stones they had used for ballasts on the ship and make a road up the hill. The pictures below are ones I took showing the ballast road, some street views and some of the steep crooked steps.
This street now still has most of the original buildings and consists mostly of gift shops, souvenir shops and restaurants. You can also get on one of the river cruise ships here. They offer dinner cruises and sightseeing cruises. I believe the tour guide said originally the river was about 14 feet deep, but now is 42 feet deep and there is a plan to make it deeper. It is now the 5th busiest port in the U. S.
Since we are going to be in Savannah for the next couple months, most of my next blogs are going to be about Savannah.
On our first visit to Savannah, we parked in the Whitfield street parking garage as was suggested to us by the folks at CreekFire R V resort. It’s an underground parking lot that costs $5/day and opens into Ellis Square.
The city of Savannah was designed to be built in 24 squares. One of those squares was Ellis square. At one time the city tore down Ellis Square and put up a 6 story parking structure. Recently, I’m not sure of the exact time, the city “reclaimed” that square. They tore down the structure and built an underground parking garage. They are in the process now of rebuilding and replanting the center square.
This is the site we left in Florida on New Year’s Day. We gave ourselves 2 days to make the 8-hour drive to Savannah so we didn’t arrive grumpily and at night. It didn’t take us too long to tear down, get loaded up and leave Florida. We were trying to beat the rain. We arrived in Florida in mid-October and I think it rained almost every day! The day we left the ground was soaked and big puddles everywhere.
… Of a Visitor to the Gettysburg National Cemetery
Very Close to the Gettysburg National Military Park’s Visitor Center is the Gettysburg Cemetery. This is the final resting point for 3500 union soldiers killed in the battle of Gettysburg.
There are monuments throughout the cemetery and the battlefield dedicated to both the union and the Confederate soldiers. Pictured below are a few of the monuments located in the cemetery. There are many, many more to see.
The site of the most significant civil war battle was fought in 1863 in the fields surrounding the little town of Gettysburg PA. At that time the town had 2400 residents. Today, the town has a population of 7700 residents and is the home of the Gettysburg Cyclorama, the Gettysburg Museum, the Gettysburg National Cemetery, and the Gettysburg Battlefield part of the Gettysburg National Military Park as well as many other historic homes and sites.
My mother is gone now, but I can remember her telling me about when she was a child she had to go live with a relative in North Carolina for a while and about a visit they made to The Blowing Rock in North Carolina.