The Captain Morse House

A Little Bit Of History in St. Marys, Georgia

As the second oldest city in the U.S., there isn’t a little bit of history in St. Marys, but a lot!

St. Marys was established in 1787.  All the streets in the historic district are named for the original 20 men who bought a part of the 4 block area (at $38 a piece!)  It soon became a bustling seaport due to the natural harbor and was filled with 305 citizens (according to the 1790 census) and quite a few unregistered smugglers and pirates.

St. Marys’ location – on the Atlantic Coast just above Florida – led to its involvement in several of the major military conflicts in U.S.history:

  • Troops were sent from New York to the area during the American Revolution.
  • During the War of 1812, the Battle of Fort Peter occurred near the town, at the fort on Point Peter along the St. Marys River. The British captured the fort and the town and occupied it for about a month.
  • Union gunboats shelled its waterfront buildings during the Civil War.

Want to learn a little more? Take the St. Marys History Walk that outlines the history of St. Marys & Cumberland Island. You can pick up a printed self-guided tour brochure or walk layout at the St. Marys Welcome Center.

http://www.exploregeorgia.org/listing/54871-st-marys-history-walk

Created by Captain E. F. Morse

Kayaking St. Marys

Paddle on the St. Marys River, along the marshes and through the harbor.   

Dolphins and Otters are common sights in the St. Marys, as are shrimp boats — and an occasional nuclear submarine at the mouth of the river as it heads out or returns from patrol. The docks on the St. Marys harbor are favorite spots of visiting manatees.

Take a look at the official guide:

There are 3 places in St. Marys that currently rent kayaks:
Google Link to Kayak Rentals

Coming for a Wedding?

Attending a wedding in St. Marys? It’s no surprise.

Every year, the Captain Morse House hosts many guests and wedding parties.  With four bedrooms, it is one of the largest vacation rentals in St. Marys. And since it is centrally located in the historic district, it’s the perfect place for bridal parties and large groups to gather to celebrate. 

It’s a short walk to the St. Marys Waterfront Park and the Orange Hall House Museum, two of the locations popular for nuptials.  

If you are attending a wedding on Cumberland Island, you are in good company! 

John F. Kennedy Jr. and Carolyn Bessette made their marriage vows in a tiny, white clapboard First African Baptist Church on Cumberland Island’s north end.

Kings Bay Naval Base

Kings Bay Naval Base, for those who are not familiar, is located 10 minutes west of St. Marys. The Submarine Base is the U.S. Atlantic Fleet‘s home port for U.S. Navy Fleet ballistic missile nuclear submarines armed with Trident missile nuclear weapons.  

St. Marys’ appreciation and support of the men and women who serve our nation is evident around town.  When we first came to St. Marys, we noticed that most downtown shops have a sign in their windows, “EDICCIMAD.”  To save you the time of an inquiry, this means “Every Day in Camden County is Military Appreciation Day.”  In most cases, those displaying this sign will offer a military discount.  As retired Air Force, just seeing those signs makes us feel a little warmer inside.

If you are a military member with proper ID, you can take advantage of the Commissary and other base features, such as a beautiful swimming pool and playground.  On any of our longer visits, we do our grocery shopping there.  

Many of our guests each year are the families of military members, attending a ceremony or coming to visit their loved ones stationed in Kings Bay.  As retired military, those groups are “our family” too, and we love the thought of sharing our home with them.

 

Advantages of the Captain Morse House

Consider renting the Captain Morse House for your visiting relatives.  

  • With four bedrooms, it is more economical than individual hotel rooms. 

  • Your family members have a gathering place (that’s not your house!)

  • With so much to do in downtown St. Marys, visiting guests will enjoy every minute of their stay.