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THE OWEN-THOMAS HOUSE
If I were a lady of import living in this charming city during the early 19th century, I'd want to live in this residence. It exudes luxury!
The Owen-Thomas house was completed in 1819 by architect William Jay and is an example of the English Regency style. It was built for Richard Richardson, a banker and cotton merchant. Marquis de Lafayette once was a guest here.
FYI:This house was being renovated when we last visited, but most likely has been completed.
Hours are Mon. 12-5pm; Tues.-Sat. 10 am-5 pm; Sun. 1 pm-5 pm.
UPDATED Admission is $10 for adults; $8 for seniors; $5 for college students; $4 for children age 5-12 and under 5 is free.
This House was designed by architect William Jay at the young age of 24. The stylish residence was built from 1816 to 1819 and represents the Regency style of architecture. It was technologically advanced for its time, there was running water and troughs built to run off waste water into a cesspool. Unusual features include a brass inlaid staircase, with a unique bridge spanning the central stairwell, a Greek-key patterned window of amber glass in the dining room, and the magical effect of the drawing room ceiling. The Marquis de Layfayette stayed here in 1825 when visiting the city after the Revolutionary War and according to Savannah's oral tradition, delivered his two Savannah addresses to thousands of adoring citizens from the ornate cast iron balcony on the south side of the house .
The tour begins at the original Carriage House. This outbuilding includes one of the earliest intact urban slave quarters in the South and an education center, while the stable side of the building houses the Museum Shop and Regional Art Gallery. The Carriage House courtyard opens into a beautiful English-inspired garden.
It is now maintained by the Tellfair Museum.
- Historical Travel
- Museum Visits
Owens-Thomas House and Museum
Completed 1819 for cotton merchant Richard Richardson. The Richardsons lost the home soon after in the depression of 1820. In 1830 George Welchman Owens bought the house and it remained in the family . The house is on tour with garden and museum shop.
- School Holidays
The Owens-Thomas house was built in 1819 for a wealthy cotton merchant who, unfortunately, lost it only three years later in a financial crisis. It then became a boarding house and was eventually bought by the Owens family, who lived in it for over 100 years. One of the house's finest moments came in the 1820's, when Lafayette, the legendary French general, gave a speech from its porch. The tour of the house and its garden was interesting. The house is full of antique furniture, and had an unusual staircase.
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
- Historical Travel
The Owens-Thomas house has a lot of architectural quirks, including an indoor bridge and false doors. The tour includes a guided house tour and a do-it-yourself slave quarters tour. Worth the money.
Buy your tickets at the gift shop at the back of the house, next to the slave house. Bathrooms available on premises.
- Historical Travel
- Arts and Culture
Visit a Historical House
There are house tours aplenty in Savannah. We chose to only go on one- the Owens-Thomas house. The history behind the house and architecture is interesting- it was built by William Jay between 1816-1819 and is entirely symetrical, including doors that lead to nowhere and are just there to make things even. The tour was short but delightful. Unfortunately, the cost of the tour was far greater than the tour itself. There are a ton of historical houses that offer tours, so, if you are interested in architecture, it might be worth it to pick out a couple of houses to tour. Just beware, the cost could add up. I have included the websites of a few of the historic houses, so even if you don't go on a tour you and get your camera ready and keep an eye out while you're out for a stroll. Your best bet for knowing all the houses would be to get a travel book or guide that points out area attractions.
www.davenportsavga.com- Davenport House
www.mercerhouse.com- The Mercer House
www.girlscouts.org/birthplace- Juliette Gordon Low House
www.inusa.com/tour/ga/savannah/owens.htm- Owens Thomas House
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