09 October 2008

Noble Dr. Jones

Ok, this is Wormslow, the plantation of Noble Jones (buried at Bonaventure) located about ten miles southeast of Savannah. Jones arrived with James Oglethorpe to settle the new colony of Georgia in 1733. In 1736, he leased 500 acres on the Isle of Hope from the colony Trustees, and later gained another 500 acres from John Fallowfield. The large gate above, constructed in 1913, marks the entrance to his large plantation.
In 1739, Jones began building a fortified tabby house on the water front, a model of which is seen above. The home was not completed until 1745 due to Jones participating in the invasion of Spanish St Augustine (1740) and the following Spanish attack at St Simon's Island (1742).
Jones was an important figure in the Colony, commanding a company of Marine boatmen, and serving as a constable, soldier, and Indian Agent. He was also treasurer and assistant to president of the colony from 1760-1775, Royal Council Member 1754-56, and Justice of the Province. When he died in 1775, his daughter, Mary Jones Bulloch gained ownership of the plantation, and it passed to her brother, Noble Wimberly Jones, on her death in 1795.

Jones had remained loyal to the British crown until his death, but his son, N.W. Jones was a Patriot. He was elected to the Commons House Assembly from 1755-1775, attended the first Provincial Congress in 1775, as well as the Second Congress, the State House Assembly, and the Council of Safety On May 19, 1775, N.W. Jones with a group of Patriots stole gunpowder from the provincial magazine, and sent it to the Patriot forces in Boston. He fled Savannah prior to the British takeover in 1778, but was captured at Charleston, SC in 1780 and imprisoned in St Augustine, FL with three signers of the Declaration of Independence.

Following the Revolution, Jones went into medicine, following in his father's footsteps. He helped to found the Georgia Medical Society in 1804 and was its first president. Jones rarely saw Wormslow during his ownership, and when he died in 1805, the estate fell into disrepair. His son George moved to the property in 1828 and built a two story frame dwelling north of the original house site. His descendents live there to this day, while these tabby ruins are all that remain of the original fortified house built by Noble Jones.
During the Civil War, Confederate earthworks were built on the property along the waterfront. Although they saw little action, they were captured by Union forces in 1864, who vandalized and confiscated the property. It was returned to the Jones familly on August 29, 1865.
This stone marks where Noble Jones was originally buried on the plantation, next to his wife Sarah and youngest son, Inigo. Jones' remains were later moved to Colonial Cemetery in Savannah, then to Bonaventure, where they remain today. Sarah and Inigo are belived to remain here. This stone was placed in 1875 by George Wyberly Jones DeRenne.
This picturesque Live Oak lined driveway was created by Wymberly Jones DeRenne in the 1890's for his son.

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