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  • Writer's pictureCherise Adams

Georgia On My Mind

Updated: Feb 13, 2019

A little over three weeks ago, I had the incredibly spontaneous opportunity to visit Savannah, GA with an old friend. Being idealistic twenty year olds, we planned the entire shindig (hotel stay, dinner reservations, scheduled tours, etc.) in one weekend and were there within days. This was my second trip up to Savannah, my first being a Summer Sessions student at SCAD in 2011. Since then I read through Midnight In the Garden Of Good and Evil, watched the 90’s movie rendition (read the book, trust me), and prepared myself to recognize all of the scenes and stories from the based-on-true-events murder mystery novel. I was ready to go!

Chatham Street where we stayed at the Savannah In B&B

We stayed at the Savanna Bed & Breakfast Inn (specific, I know) in the heart of Downtown Historic Savannah, just a block away from Forsyth Park. The service was wonderful, staff was more than friendly, and the rooms… OH MY GOODNESS. We took the Oriental Suite for the weekend, a sanguine red room with a brick wall fireplace and gold accents, definitely a favorite (second to the all-teal Turkish room) in the Inn. The floors were creeky, as you would only imagine they would be in a historic block-turned-inn, but it only added to the charm.

The weekend was spent being as tourist-y as possible, taking tours of renovated homes, walking through the world famous parks, and making a special pilgrimage to the Telfair museum to see the Bird Girl statue, a must for any tourist who knows anything about Midnight. This book seemed to be a real “claim to fame” in Savannah, nearly every tour we took had numerous mentions of it and its characters. Even the queen herself, Lady Chablis preformed that weekend, a purely serendipitous discovery for us, as she only preforms once every month or so!

My favorite stop had to be our last, a guided tour through Bonaventure Cemetery. We did this on Sunday morning right before we left, the morning dampness only added to the air of mystery as we traveled between plots learning of some of Savannah’s 18th through 20th century elite. It is amazing how well kept these graves were for some being over 100 years old! When the cemetery first opened, wealthy families purchased whole sections to bury their dead personally, and it was common practice to come to the cemetery on Sunday afternoons after church and have a picnic with your deceased loved ones. Known as a “Victorian garden for the dead”, this was Savannah’s social spot, and for an extra $100, Bonaventure promised to maintain upkeep of your plot for eternity… talk about a return on investment!

Young Corinne Lawton’s grave with a statue created in her likeness. Seeking freedom from her family name, she killed herself on Bonaventure’s grounds, as the cemetery promised a free unmarked grave for anyone who died there.

We visited Johnny Mercer, “Little Gracie”, and even some new residences to the cemetery (it seemed like the most exclusive club in Savannah, the only people that can be buried there now are direct decedents of families who purchased plots centuries ago).

For all of you 20-somethings in the Southeast, if you have not visited Savannah, save up a paycheck, pack up the compact, and take a weekend trip! Stay at the Savannah Bed & Breakfast, visit Bonaventure, and have Saturday bunch at the Old Pink House (and order the flounder).

You’re welcome.

That good ol’ flounder at the Old Pink House

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