Savannah is history, charm, beauty, and nostalgia—it sets a civilized pace in an out-of-breath century. Classic Savannah is a richly illustrated history about the way people have made their homes here—from February 1733, when a diverse group of true pioneers settled on Yamacraw Bluff, to contemporary Savannah, where present-day generations love living in the historic neighborhoods that make up this unique place.
Bill Mitchell introduces the reader to the English Georgian city of Savannah, Georgia, with an essay using a chronological succession of bird’s-eye renderings and photographs to examine how the inner-city plan originated and developed, and how it remains the classic core of a living city.
The succeeding sections contain an extensive series of articles, profusely illustrated with color photographs by Van Jones Martin, showing individual Savannah homes. The reader is taken on a delightful tour, from the seven museum houses open to the public to a wide range of twenty-one private homes. Also shown are the garden and tidewater suburbs and how they reflect and complement the leisurely life the name Savannah represents. Maps are provided to help visitors explore the city and surrounding area—walking around the Historic District on a quiet Sunday morning is a pleasure one must experience to fully appreciate.
Thus the rich texture and color of Savannah are presented in history and photographs—the colonial capital, a deep-South antebellum town, a cotton port, a survivor of wars, and, perhaps most notably, a modern preservation success story. Savannah is a classic Georgian town brought struggling into the twentieth century, and, although the passage was not completed without a few bruises, the city today is still an American wonder, known for the pervasive excellence of its historic houses and gardens and the sentimental atmosphere of its tree-shaded, moss-draped streets and squares. Classic Savannah shows how this grand old town grew to fulfill its founders’ dreams—first illustrated in the beautiful Fourdrinier engraving of the town “as it stood the 29th of March 1734.”
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