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Chapter 10 - More About Savannah

I know, I know I've talked about Savannah and the book festival for the last two weeks but, it occurred to me as I was writing last week's blog that there are tons of books which feature Savannah that people may not know about. With such a rich history of wars, pirates, southern belles, and scallawags, Savannah provides a wonderful setting for many authors.

Here are a few Savannah fun facts :

  • It is believed that Savannah was first settled by Paleoindians over 12,000 years ago.

  • During the Civil War, General Sherman invaded the city but instead of having it burned as Atlanta was, the government of the city negotiated a surrender.

  • Savannah hosts the 2nd largest St. Patrick's Day celebration in the US.

  • American standard singer/songwriter Johnny Mercer was born there.

  • Southern Gothic writer Flannery O'Connor was born in Savannah and lived there until age 13.

  • Parts of Forrest Gump were filmed in Savannah.

And a few books:

Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt - Probably the best known book about Savannah, Berendt tells the nonfiction story of a murder in the heart of Savannah. Or was it self defense? The book reads as a novel and has the twists and turns of any good mystery.

Savannah: Or a Gift for Mr. Lincoln by John Jakes - Jakes always does a great job of novelizing history and this book is no exception. As Sherman's army marches in to capture Savannah and gift Mr. Lincoln a big win as a Christmas gift, a widow and her 12 year old daughter struggle to keep their plantation running.

Savannah Blues by Mary Kay Andrews - The first in the Savannah series by Andrews tells the story of Eloise (Weezy) Foley, an antiques picker, who having been jettisoned from her home by her spiteful ex-husband, has to move on with her life. A wonderful cast of characters and events will have you rooting for Weezy.

Savannah by Eugenia Price - The first in the Savannah quartet, the series is a family saga which follows the Browning family from the late 1700's through 1854. Price who died in 1996, did an enormous amount of historical research for all her novels about Georgia and it clearly shows in this terrific series.

Lady from Savannah: The Life of Juliette Low by Daisy Gordon Lawrence and Gladys Denny Shultz - This biography by Low's niece (the first girl to join the Girl Scouts of America when Low started a troop in 1912) is a chronicle of not only Juliette Low's life and vision but also of two great families, the Kinzies, who founded Chicago, and the Gordons of Savannah. A telling account of American Edwardian society and a woman of wealth and privilege believed in a movement "for the girls of all America". Even if you or your family members have never been in Girl Scouting, this is a great read.

Do you have a favorite Savannah read?

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