Leaving Driftwood Beach, we headed back to the van and got out our bikes. The entire island has a network of bicycle paths which are really nice, very wide and well maintained and this time of year, not very crowded. Since we hadn’t ridden our bikes for over 5 years, Rob had said that on our first ride we shouldn’t overdo it. HA, we ended up going over 12 miles – there was just so much to see!
During the first mile, we saw the ruins of the Horton House which is a two-story structure built in 1746 by Major William Horton and is one of the oldest standing tabby structure exteriors in the state. Tabby is a building material native to coastal Georgia, having crushed oyster shells as its principal ingredient. Nearby was the Du Bignon cemetery. Du Bignon was a French privateer who owned Jekyll Island for a period of time.
After peddling a few more miles, we arrived in the historic district of Jekyll Island. In 1886, prominent millionaires Frank Henry Goodyear, Edwin and George Gould, J.P. Morgan, Joseph Pulitzer and William Rockefeller bought the island for $125,000. They named themselves the Jekyll Island Club and built a large clubhouse and elaborate cottages to use as a hunting preserve and family getaway. The hunting club was restored in 1986 and is now the Jekyll Club Hotel, a National Historic Landmark. Several of the original cottages still stand and are part of the Jekyll Island Museum. Other notable events that occurred here – in 1910, the Federal Reserve Act was first drafted here. In 1915, the words “Hello Jekyll Island” reverberated across the phone lines as AT&T President, Theodore Vail joined a party call with President Woodrow Wilson in Washington D.C., Alexander Graham Bell in New York and Thomas Watson in San Francisco. This event marked the grand opening of the first transcontinental telephone service! When Vail passed away in 1920, the company he had grown from infancy already owned more than 25 million miles of telephone wire. Imagine! Below are some of the photos that we took of the historic district.
It was getting late in the afternoon so it was time to begin our long trek back to the van. Boy, I have to say that the last few miles were really tough! I was really, really, really glad when we finally arrived since the legs felt like they were about to fall off. Just as we approached our van, a couple walking their two dogs started talking to us. Nice people – they live in the area but travel about in a travel trailer which they hope to upgrade when he retires in a year.
We had talked about going out to dinner but we were so tired and felt rather grubby so we opted for sub sandwiches from Subway. You can bet it was an early to bed kind of night! Having fun is just so exhausting!
We were both really impressed with the area and definitely would like to come back for a longer visit in the future. So on Monday morning, we said goodbye to Jekyll Island, heading over to Titusville and the Kennedy Space Center for our next adventure!