Sunday, February 22, 2015

Lighthouse Adventure: Georgia

The Demilune protects the rear wall of the fort
Tybee Island Georgia is home to two places that we have wanted to visit.  Wednesday was a beautiful sunny 45 degrees in coastal Georgia so went for a drive through beautiful downtown Savannah and then headed to the beach.
Fort Pulaski was our first stop.  We learned that
Fort Pulaski is named after Polish Revolutionary War hero Count Casmir Pulaski, who lost his life in the 1779 siege of Savannah.
The same Count Pulaski is responsible for the name of Pulaski New York, a town near Lake Ontario where we have camped for many years.

A moat surrounds the fort and Demilune
Fort Pulaski was not yet completed or garrisoned
in 1861 so it had to be conquered by US forces before they could occupy it.
That battle is famous for being one of the first to be won by the use of rifled cannons.  Fort Pulaski had been considered an impenetrable fortress and the strength of its 71/2 foot solid brick walls supported by masonry piers compared to that of the Rocky Mountains.  The siege lasted less than 2 days.

A drawbridge and this door protect to fort

To get into the fort we had to cross a moat over a drawbridge and through heavily armored doors.

Walking out onto the parade ground is rather like walking into a major league baseball stadium...out of the building and onto a green field enclosed by walls.

We learned that soldiers played baseball here and in other forts during the years of the Civil War.

Fred was impressed with the sight of a heavy wooden blindage that was erected against one of the walls in an attempt to provide protection for the Confederate soldiers from heavy cannon fire.

It was in an area that would have served as the outfield during a baseball game so of course her compared it to Fenway's green monster.

From the top of the Bastions we could see Tybee Island and also the nearby Cockspur Island Lighthouse.
Cockspur Island Lighthouse

This tower has stood since 1856 despite Hurricane damage and cannon fire. It was extinguished by Confederate forces at the beginning of the Civil War and not relit until wars end.  Cared for by the National Park Service it has been part of Fort Pulaski National Monument since 1958.

Tybee Island has an interesting history.  Seven flags have flown over this tiny barrier island. Spanish, French, Pirate, Confederate, Union States and Georgia. The lighthouse first built in 1773 was burned by the Confederate Army in 1861. It was rebuilt in 1887 after the Civil War. The lower portion of the lighthouse is the original but the top 85 feet had to be reconstructed.
it remains and active aid to navigation.
We enjoyed our visit and climbed the 178 steps to the top the enjoyed a walk on the beach as well as lunch at the nearby North Beach bar and grill.

Tybee Island Lighthouse


  1. Rory loved his postcard from here. However, he became very serious and asked "are bad guys real mommy?" After I answered, he quickly became disctracted with the moat and then wanted to know where they kept the horses!