Historic Savannah Foundation
PO Box 1733
321 East York Street
Savannah, GA 31402-1733
Message from the President/ CEO
Destination Savannah Forward
Membership Survey Results
Revolving Fund/ MASHH
2009 Tour of Homes Recap
2009 Garden Expo Recap
Davenport House Report
National Preservation Conference
October 13- 17, 2009
18th Annual Gala
October 24, 2009
Annual Meeting and Preservation
October 29, 2009
Place and Time: TBA
3rd Annual Seacrest
Race for Preservation 10k/5k
February 27, 2010
MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT/CEO...
Welcome to the first issue of our brand new E-letter! I hope you
enjoy the format, the ease of access and, of course, the content.
We intend this to be—at a minimum—a quarterly production. It will
be an effective and efficient communication tool to reach HSF members
and constituents. I welcome your input, so please give us
feedback. And, most importantly, make sure we have your correct
e-mail address…and those of your family, friends and neighbors.
We want to swell our ranks and include as many e-mail addresses
as possible, so forward this along to others and encourage them to
sign up to receive this regular communiqué.
DESTINATION: SAVANNAH FORWARD
In reading the Savannah Morning News and keeping an ear to the
ground, one is excited by the many positive things happening in Savannah
and Chatham County. The MLK flyover may actually be demolished
allowing the boulevard a second life. The County has
pledged to move forward with the Truman Linear trail for biking and
walking. Savannah has curbside recycling and the County is talking
of going green. Sustainable Fellwood is starting the second phase
and Hitch Village will get a rebirth.
For Preservation Month, downtown Columbia Ward had a well attended
“meet and greet”. Community leaders who work in the neighborhood
brought residents and businesses together hoping to create
a village type atmosphere and plans to utilize the public space, Columbia
Square. This was a direct outcome of Fred Kent’s message
to us about bringing livability in our community.
The County and the Savannah Tree Foundation are working with
the Historic Beach Neighborhood Association to revitalize Mother
Matilda Beasley Park on East Broad across from Jones Street.
Trees have been planted; there are a dog park, picnic tables, and a
playground. Ultimately, the Mother Matilda Beasley House will be
moved there, the ball park will be upgraded and a pavilion will be
built. All this will create a gathering place for the neighborhood.
2009 Board of Trustees
W. John Mitchell - Chairman
J.T. Turner, Jr. - Vice Chairman
Susie Clinard - Past Chairman
Vaughnette Goode-Walker - Secretary
Denis Blackburne - Treasurer
Mr. Scott Barber
Mrs. Lorraine Boice
Mrs. Elizabeth DuBose
Mr. Jeffrey S. Eley
Mr. Ken Gaylord
Mr. Hugh S. Golson
Mrs. Susan Hancock
Mr. Tommy Hester
Mrs. Kathleen Horne
Mrs. Ann Koontz
Mr. Aaron Levy
Mr. William Lovett
Mr. Daniel Mahfet
Mr. Chris Morrill
Mr. David Paddison
Ms. Anne Roise
Ms. Ebony Simpson
Ms. Lise Sundrla
Mr. Hue Thomas
Dr. Albert Wall
Mr. Franklin Williams
Mr. J. Reid Williamson, Jr.
Mrs. Kim Bockius-Suwyn
Mrs. Jennifer Fana
Mrs. Gloria Harrison
Mr. Randy Kulp
The group of organizations that formed Destination: Savannah Forward
and brought Fred Kent to Savannah have continued to meet
and discuss our community and how we might promote vitality in
our public spaces. You may contact us at:
A complete recap of all of our great events and sponsor information
is available on our website. Another successful preservation month
has come and gone with great success and community participation.
Special thanks to Mopper-Stapen Realtors for their $3,000.00
donation to the Foundation. www.mopper-stapen.com.
HSF’s board spent the better
part of a weekend in a planning
retreat to establish a
new work plan for the organization.
Facilitated by John
Hildreth, Director of the
Southern Office of the National
Trust for Historic
Preservation, the Board of
Trustees established four
new priority goals to guide
the organization over the
next 3-4 years. The four priority goals are: 1) Develop and implement
a marketing plan; 2) Develop and implement a fundraising plan
towards undertaking a comprehensive capital campaign to support
HSF and its programs; 3) Develop and implement a public education
package about HSF specifically and preservation as a whole;
and 4) Improve and deepen relationships with elected officials in Savannah
and Chatham County about HSF specifically and preservation
as a whole.
These new goals provide focus for HSF staff and board, but our mission
remains the same: preserving and protecting Savannah’s heritage
through advocacy, education and community involvement. We
will continue to feature the Davenport House, use our Revolving
Fund and be advocates for preservation in and around
Savannah and Chatham County. But now, we will do so with the
larger picture of education and influence in mind—honing our message,
telling our story and proving our relevance. Preservation is
HSF 1733 Society Members
Mr. and Mrs. Lee Adler
Mr. and Mrs. Curtis G. Anderson
The Olde Pink House
Dr. and Mrs. Sidney Jefferson Bolch, III
Brennan & Wasden, LLP
Mr. Michael Brown
Chatham Orthopaedics Associates, PA
Ms. Susie Clinard and
Mr. Harley Lingerfelt
The Coastal Bank
Colonial Group, Inc.
Mr. and Mrs. Dale Critz, Sr.
The Dana Foundation
Darby Bank & Trust Co.
Mr. and Mrs. Glen M. Darbyshire
Mr. and Mrs. Steve Day
Mrs. Edward Downing
Dulany Industries, Inc.
First Chatham Bank
Mr. and Mrs. Don Gardner
Georgia Ports Authority
Mr. and Mrs. Marco Ghisolfi
Gray Line Savannah
Hussey, Gay, Bell & DeYoung
J.T. Turner Construction Co., Inc.
Mr. and Mrs. Robert S. Jepson, Jr.
Lionstone Wealth Management, LLC
Mr. and Mrs. William H. Lovett
Minis & Co., Inc.
Mr. and Mrs. Donald H. Moore
Mr. and Mrs. Dean F. Morehouse
Mr. and Mrs. Howard J. Morrison, Jr.
Mr. and Mrs. Ronald A. Oliver
Savannah Morning News
Mrs. Esther Shaver-Harnett and
Mr. David Harnett
not a ‘special interest group.’ What we do is important—both in
and of itself and in the larger sense of making Savannah the beautiful
and economically vibrant place it is. HSF has an important role
to play in keeping it so, and we need to make certain our story it
told and understood.
MEMBERSHIP SURVEY RESULTS
You may remember our invitation for you to respond to a membership
survey (mailed to you in February). Results were tallied
and used to help form the basis of HSF’s planning retreat—taking
what our members said and adapting our programs and initiatives
along those lines. In several recent presentations, I have highlighted
some findings in the survey. I share these with you below.
• 80% cite commitment to preservation as reason
for joining and retaining membership to HSF
• 61% have been members for >10 years; demon
strates loyalty and HSF's ability to serve them
• 65% feel well informed about HSF’s mission; feel it
is clearly stated and on-track
• 28% say HSF has favorable reputation w/ general
public and public officials; 8% say unfavorable
• 49% say HSF has been involved in controversial
issues; 48% say it was appropriate to do so
• 15% say HSF has not been involved in controver
sial issues that it should have been
• 65% of the membership is either satisfied or very
satisfied with HSF and its programs
Key Issues that HSF’s membership identified for the organization
to be involved in…
- Height and mass issues in the Landmark District
- Restore the Berrien House
- Improve governmental relations
- Keep the Revolving Fund going strong
- Tourism management
REVOLVING FUND/MASHH UPDATE
There are many good things to report for the Revolving Fund and
MASHH program! The purchase of the Revolving Fund property
located at 1505 Habersham Street was finalized, building drawings
have been reviewed and owner, Greg Jacobs, is in the
process of Submitting plans for a building permit! There will be
more exciting news to come as this project progresses. Another
success story is the MASHH property located at 1021 E. Bolton St.
1733 Society, continued
Mr. Wayne Spear and
Mr. Murray Perlman
Mr. and Mrs. Sheldon U. Tenenbaum
The Reserve at Savannah Harbor
The Savannah Bank
Mr. and Mrs. Tom Tisch
Mr. and Mrs. Robert A. Tschetter
1505 Habersham Street
1021 East Bolton Street - before and after
that just passed final inspections after a complete rehab. This historic
corner store will now be a vibrant part of the Eastside Historic
District as rental units.
HSF sponsored a house for Rebuilding Together Savannah’s work
day as part of Preservation Month with the help of plumber James
Smith and carpenter/painter Jay Madden. HSF staff along with volunteers
from SCAD, the SCCPSS Historic Preservation Program
and others (almost 30 total!) worked to repair a bathroom, completed
a handicap ramp, made kitchen improvements, added landscaping
and performed other needed repairs in an effort to keep 87
year old Ms. Jones in her historic home. It was a long, hot day but
everyone worked until the job was completed! Working with Rebuilding
Together Savannah is just one way the MASHH program
works proactively to prevent historic houses from becoming dilapidated.
We have also been in negotiations with a family to purchase
their home in the Thomas Square Historic District that suffered fire
damage in June 2007. The house has been targeted for demolition
by the City of Savannah and the Revolving Fund Committee decided
to step in and try to save it. Although they do not have funds
to rehabilitate the house themselves, the family hopes to save the
house and they see HSF’s Revolving Fund as a way to accomplish
their goal. Thanks to an immediate response by J.T.Turner Construction
Co. and Hussey, Gay, Bell and DeYoung, we were able to
get an estimate for the cost of stabilization. Once we had an estimate,
we were able to make a decision to purchase the property
and get the property pulled from the MPC agenda where it would
have been approved for demolition. We expect to have a signed
contract very soon and will then begin stabilization of the property
while marketing it for sale.
The MASHH program continues to work with the City of Savannah
in order to save historic properties from demolition. MASHH is currently
working with 20+ homeowners through the program. Thankfully,
we have three(!) SCAD students working as interns this
summer. With their help, we should be able to reach even more
homeowners to offer technical assistance!
2009 TOUR OF HOMES RECAP
Rebuilding Together work day
Final figures from the 74th Annual Savannah Tour of Homes and
Gardens are in as the Tour of Homes Advisory Board announced
the net proceeds from the 2009 Tour were $134,345! These results
are fantastic and represent the concerted efforts of all our volunteers,
homeowners and visitors. Thank you!
2009 Tour of Homes Sponsors
United Community Bank
Savage, Turner, Pinson & Karsman
Bouhan, Williams & Levy, LLC
Darby Bank and Trust Co.
Inglesby, Falligant, Horne, Courington &
Ellis, Painter, Ratterree & Adams
Roger Wood Foods
Savannah Morning News
WRHQ FM 105.3
2009 SGE Preview Party
Lecture speaker Tovah Martin
How does this figure compare with last year’s Tour? In 2008, we
were about 10% ahead of where we ended up this year. Given the
state of the economy, this year’s figure of $134,345 is truly outstanding
and the Board is pleased. The best news, of course, is that
the proceeds will benefit the good work of the partner organizations,
the Women of Christ Church and Historic Savannah Foundation.
The Church will allocate its portion (51%) to community missions
and ministries to meet qualified needs here in Savannah. Historic
Savannah's portion (49%) will support its continued program of historic
preservation which has helped make Savannah one of the nation's
most beautiful cities. A special “thank you” to Kacey Ratterree,
2009 Chairman, on a job well-done!
The 75th Annual Savannah Tour of Homes and Gardens is planned
for March 25 – 28, 2010 and is well-underway, led by Gloria Harrison
as Chairman. Call the office for more information – summer
hours are T, W, Th from 10am – 5pm.
2009 SAVANNAH GARDEN EXPOSITION RECAP
Under the inspired direction of co-chairmen Connie Darbyshire and
Anna Wasden, and implemented by countless volunteers, the theme
of “Our Square Roots” truly honored Savannah’s distinctive city plan
and garden designs. The historic Roundhouse Railroad Museum
was transformed to accommodate full-size exhibition gardens and
an open-air market with growers and garden-related merchandise.
The Carolyn Ross McDonald Lecture Series featured well known
author and speaker Tovah Martin; former UGA coach and Master
Gardener, Vince Dooley; and Buddy Lee, the inventor of the Encore
Azalea®. Gaye Drummond and Tovah Martin each facilitated informative
workshops. The Preview Party was wildly successful,
again combining a Silent Auction with the incredible beauty of the
Exposition and the extraordinary food and talent of many of Savannah's
The 2009 Expo also brought an exciting partnership with the Garden
Club of Savannah for their annual NOGS (North of Gaston) tour
which included walking tours of some of Savannah’s most beautiful
private gardens and a Southern Tea in the garden of the Harper
Fowlkes House. The Wine Tasting, Garden Tour & Fine Wine Auction
gave all who participated a truly memorable evening on beautiful
Monterey Square. Mr. and Mrs. Allen Drummond, Mr. and Mrs.
Ed Hill, and Mr. and Mrs. William Sprague opened their gardens to
wine lovers who sampled two different wines in each garden and
enjoyed hors d'oeuvres provided by Local 11 Ten Restaurant. All
the guests ended the evening in the home of Mr. and Mrs. William
Sprague for an auction of fine and rare wines, carefully selected
and secured by Dr. Robert Tomhave and Mr. Dale Critz, Sr.
2009 Garden Expo Sponsors
Mr. & Mrs. Robert S. Jepson, Jr.
Local 11 Ten
Brennan & Wasden
Legacy Leak & Pipe Restoration
Bowman Law Office LLC
Mr. & Mrs. Richard Eckburg
Mrs. Carolyn Luck
Minis & Co.
The Savannah Bank
Savannah Tire & Rubber
Garden Expo In-Kind Sponsors:
Garden and Gun
The Presidents’ Quarters Inn
Savannah Morning News
Southern Living Plant Collection
Spanish Moss Printing
The 2009 Savannah Garden Exposition was definitely one to remember
and would not have been possible without the support of
the many patrons, volunteers and sponsors. Thank you all for
making this event a huge success!
Historic Savannah Foundation and 2009 Gala Chair, Kim Bockius-Suwyn,
are pleased to announce that The Coastal Bank will
serve as the premier sponsor for the 18th Annual Historic Savannah
Foundation Gala, to be held on Saturday, October 24, 2009
in beautiful Calhoun Square. This marks the sixth consecutive
year that The Coastal Bank has served as the gala’s top sponsor.
“We’re proud to support the Historic Savannah Foundation and
their important mission to save endangered buildings from demolition,
protect our city’s unique urban plan and educate the public
about preservation,” said Tom Wiley, president and CEO of
Coastal Bankshares, Inc. “It’s important to respect our region’s
history and protect the qualities that make Savannah so special.”
Calhoun Square: 2009 Gala venue
As tradition, the Gala will be a formal, black-tie, sit-down dinner
event for more than 400 guests. Cocktails will begin at 6:00 p.m.
Daniel G. Carey
Davenport House Staff
HSF Executive Offices
321 East York Street
Savannah, GA 31401
(912) 233-7787 phone
(912) 233-7706 fax
in different private homes and venues throughout the area, followed
by an elegant catered dinner at 8:00 p.m. in the square.
Guests will also enjoy dancing to the music of a live band until
11:00 p.m. Mark your calendar and make plans to attend! Details
and invitations will be mailed at the end of summer but to ensure
that you receive an invitation, make sure that your HSF membership
is current! as always, the proceeds from the Gala will be used
to preserve and protect our historic city. Thank you in advance for
supporting this important “friend-raiser” and fundraiser.
NEWS FROM THE DH
Davenport House staff recently returned from the national meeting
of Association of Living History, Farm and Agricultural Museums
(ALFHAM’s) which was held at Old Salem in Winston-Salem, NC.
Below are key concepts that were taken away about house museums
• Museums must recognize economic forces in their
• The recent past has not been kind to museums; one
major living history site in Massachusetts has gone
from 80 interpreters to 18.
• To change successfully, museums should utilize professionally
gathered data about market trends.
• Time, energy, resources and commitment are
required to implement change successfully.
• Aim to change perceptions about house museumsmake
them expect to have fun!
• People have shorter attentions spans these days,
but using multimedia is not always what people want
or expect when they visit an historic site.
• Ours is a human experience. People want to learn
• Customer service is essential to our survival.
• What we do (in museums) is a living thing. It grows
and evolves or it dies.
• People want history brought to life. They want to
know what it was like back then!
While Davenport House has not
experienced the extremes that
many museum site have, its community,
which includes you, must
recognize that offering a variety of
experiences, having diverse revenue
streams, being flexible in
everything it does and being committed
to customer service are the
new realities and keys to its survival.