• Reynolds Mansion on Sapelo Island, Georgia

      Step back in time to an island that was once a slave-holding sugar cane plantation owned by Thomas Spaulding. Exploring the island, you can see the mansion, lighthouse, ruins of the sugar mill and the community of Hog Hammock plus the Sapelo Island National Estuarine Research Reserve. In 1865, 362 freedmen lived on Sapelo. In 1912, Howard Coffin bought the entire island except for the black communities and rebuilt the mansion that Spaulding had built. Coffin, in turn, sold the island to North Carolina tobacco heir, R.J. Reynolds, Jr. in 1934 and Reynold's widow later sold it to the state of Georgia. Hog Hammock, owned privately, is now a 434 acre historic district, owned mainly by descendants of former slaves or "saltwater Geechees." The mansion is now a state park and can be rented by groups of 16 or larger for stays of two nights minimum. The mansion is also open for guided tours by state personnel on a limited schedule. Local tour guides include a visit to the grounds of the mansion.

      If you go:
      The Sapelo Ferry and Visitor Center are located in Meridian, 8 miles east of Darien, off GA Hwy. 99. To make a ferry reservation and visit the island, you must have official business: staying on the island, taking a tour, or have work or business there. The ferry takes 30 minutes and round-trip is $5. (Many items including bicycles and pets are not allowed on the ferry.) If not taking a tour, you'll probably want to rent a golf cart or bicycle to explore the island. Information is posted at the ferry terminal in Meridian or check with your tour guide or host. In addition to renting the mansion, groups can also make reservations to stay at the campground. Individuals can either take a tour and stay for the day or stay at one of the private lodging places in Hog Hammock. The one convenience store on the island has limited hours and merchandise so you need to bring food and other supplies with you. A grocery store, motels and restaurants are located in Darien.


      1100 Autobahn
      Sapelo Island, Georgia 31327 USA

      Mailing address:
      PO Box 15
      Sapelo Island, GA 31327 USA

      Phone Numbers:

      RJ Reynolds Mansion
      +1 (912) 485-2299

      Sapelo Island Visitor Center
      +1 (912) 437-3224