Archive for November 2nd, 2013

Catching Up With Fanny Andrews in Washington, Georgia

November 2, 2013

This is the third post of a series. Click here for the first part, and here for the second part.

After leaving the Gilbert-Alexander House and not getting accosted, although no thanks to our efforts, we tootled around a bit more.
Sugar had seen a marker or two that he wanted to investigate.

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Oh, yeah.  Now we’re having fun.  We stopped on the side of the road to view this marker.

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TWO HUNDRED FEET EAST

SITE OF

PRESBYTERIAN POPLAR

HERE WAS HELD THE FIRST

ORDINATION OF A PRESBYTERIAN

MINISTER IN GEORGIA, JULY 22, 1790,

WHEN JOHN SPRINGER WAS ORDAINED

AND INSTALLED PASTOR OF

SMYRNA PROVIDENCE AND

WASHINGTON CHURCHES

BY A COMMISSION OF THE

PRESBYTERY OF SOUTH CAROLINA

COMPOSED OF

REV. ROBERT HALL

AND

REV. FRANCIS CUMMINS

That is surely important news for someone.  I don’t know who you are yet, so feel free to comment.  Don’t just sit there.

We headed back over to another marker that we saw near the Catholic Cemetery.  Sugar has a nose for markers.

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THIS TREE PLANTED – 1930

HONORING

ELIZA FRANCES ANDREWS

“MISS FANNIE”

TEACHER, AUTHOR,

RENOWNED BOTANIST

WASHINGTON WOMAN’S CLUB

1982

AUG. 10, 1840

JAN. 21, 1931

Reading this marker meant that we needed to cross the street to take a photo of the tree.  The walking lady hardly gave us a second look, like people wander around this town all the time taking photos.

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Our hostess at the B&B had told us about the Resthaven Cemetery on the edge of town.  We still had daylight, and we found it easily.  We found the cemetery, but I couldn’t find the entrance, because you have to do a quick lefty-righty thing to get to the entrance, and we turned around in a dicey-looking parking lot.  (*Not* someone’s driveway.)

Sugar knew what the marker for Fanny Andrews looked like, and we easily found the old section, and he went right to it.  There were SO many Andrews people, and their affiliated families, so I took lots and lots of photos.

Here’s where things get complicated for you the reader. Feel the urge to scroll past these unidentified people.

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Eliza Frances “Fanny” Andrews

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Someone had been here before us and left fresh flowers. I wish that we could take credit for being clever and bringing flowers for a world-famous botanist. Nice move, mystery person.

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It was a perfect time of day for photographing tombstones.  The angle of the setting sun created shadows and made the inscriptions easier to read.

On the way to the car, we saw a section with small markers with no inscriptions at all.

There’s an interesting pattern of sunlight on the right side of the photo below.  If you believe in angels, you might enjoy this photo.

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The sun is setting, and the night is calling, and the birds settle down for an evening of rest at beautiful Resthaven.

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The Gilbert-Alexander House in Washington, Georgia

November 2, 2013

This is the second part of a series. You can read the first part by clicking here.

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GILBERT – ALEXANDER HOUSE
In the 1780’s Felix and William Gilbert, Virgin-
ians, camped in a beautiful grove here and were
so pleased with the scenery that they returned
later to take land grants. In 1808 they erected
the brick portion of this house, one of the
oldest brick structures north of Augusta. Their
descendants are the only families who have
occupied it. The burial grounds on the property
attest the continuity of the family for more
than 150 years.
The Alexanders, descendants of the Gilberts,
served with distinction in the War Between
the States. Porter Alexander, who lived here, was
a Brigadier General of Artillery in the Confed-
erate Army.

Porter Alexander was Sarah Alexander Lawton’s brother.

The opposite side of the historical marker is the same, but a bit brighter to read since it faces the sun.  Here it is for your viewing pleasure.

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Y’all know that tree photos are coming. And probably gravestones. Yeah, definitely gravestones.

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Then I did something that I usually don’t do. I drove down their driveway.

Let me explain more about the terror I feel about driving down someone’s driveway unannounced.  When I was growing up, and we would be out for a drive in the country and ready to go home, you never, ever (repeat never) turned around in someone’s driveway.  It’s rude, and it’s like an unspoken code.  You might drive miles out of your way looking for a likely turnaround spot, or a church parking lot, or a road intersection, but that’s just the way it was.  Imagine the panic I feel when I not only pull into the driveway, but continue on.  Illegal trespassing could get you shot, but strangely has never happened to us.  But still, suppressed panic.

So Sugar is egging me on (Drive down the driveway!  There’s no sign!), which is easy for him to say, since he’s not the one doing the driving.  I get all big-eyed in terror (No sign!  We’ll never get this chance again!), and what the heck.  The car creeps forward like a trundling ottoman down the allee of young trees (Look!  They’ve got an allee!  They want us to drive down!), humping over a few tree roots, and he screeches, “There’s statues!  Over there!  To the back of the house!  That’s the cemetery!  Get a picture!”  I grip the wheel a little tighter, and screech, in a whisper, right back at him, “No!  I’m driving the damn car!”, and he wants me to drive closer and closer until we’re almost at the front porch.  We decided that was far enough, even though I’m sure that I could gun it and tear across the front of the house and shoot out the other end of the driveway back onto the street, because it appears to me that the driveway in actually an upside-down “U” that connects to the street in two places.  Sugar wasn’t so sure, so we decided to back up, which would be quite a driving feat for me since we’ve already traveled down the driveway the length of a football field.

I start to back up, and my car antenna catches on a low-hanging branch of a giant tree.  “Spronnnngggg” vibrated the car, and by now we’re sure that there are no occupants in the house, because they surely would have come outside to view the two old people arguing in the bright yellow car that is vibrating like a tuning fork.

We run like hell.

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And what does Sugar want to do now? Why, that’s right, he wants to go to the other driveway entrance and approach from that side.

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Yes, we crept forward from that side, too, but I was able to agree to try one last photograph and used the zoom feature on the camera. He assured me that people probably constantly drive down the driveway taking photos of the house.

Then I turned the car around and headed out. Pronto.
More driving around. More history.