Island Time
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Island Time

An Illustrated History of St. Simons Island, Georgia

Jingle Davis

Photographs by Benjamin Galland

Title Details

Pages: 288

Illustrations: 171 color and 47 b&w photos

Trim size: 10.000in x 9.000in



Pub Date: 06/01/2013

ISBN: 9-780-8203-4245-0

List Price: $39.95

Subsidies and Partnerships

Published with the generous support of Friends Fund

Island Time

An Illustrated History of St. Simons Island, Georgia

Jingle Davis

Photographs by Benjamin Galland

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  • Description
  • Reviews
  • Awards

Eighty miles south of Savannah lies St. Simons Island, one of the most beloved seaside destinations in Georgia and home to some twenty thousand year-round residents. In Island Time, Jingle Davis and Benjamin Galland offer a fascinating history and stunning visual celebration of this coastal community.

Prehistoric people established some of North America's first permanent settlements on St. Simons, leaving three giant shell rings as evidence of their occupation. People from other diverse cultures also left their mark: Mocama and Guale Indians, Spanish friars, pirates and privateers, British soldiers and settlers, German religious refugees, and aristocratic antebellum planters. Enslaved Africans and their descendants forged the unique Gullah Geechee culture that survives today. Davis provides a comprehensive history of St. Simons, connecting its stories to broader historical moments. Timbers for Old Ironsides were hewn from St. Simons's live oaks during the Revolutionary War. Aaron Burr fled to St. Simons after killing Alexander Hamilton. Susie Baker King Taylor became the first black person to teach openly in a freedmen's school during her stay on the island. Rachel Carson spent time on St. Simons, which she wrote about in The Edge of the Sea.

The island became a popular tourist destination in the 1800s, with visitors arriving on ferries until a causeway opened in 1924. Davis describes the challenges faced by the community with modern growth and explains how St. Simons has retained the unique charm and strong sense of community that it is known for today. Featuring more than two hundred contemporary photographs, historical images, and maps, Island Time is an essential book for people interested in the Georgia coast.

A Friends Fund Publication.

I enjoyed reading this well-researched, wonderfully written book. This will be the book on St. Simons Island history for a long time.

—Jerald T. Milanich, author of Laboring in the Fields of the Lord: Spanish Missions and Southeastern Indians

Jingle knows and loves her island. In the nearly three decades that I've known her, she—like her writing—has been honest, insightful, and true. Read this volume and see her unique vision of her home—the Georgia Sea Islands. Taste the briny air. Feel the history. Be blessed. Jingle Davis is a blessing.

—Tina McElroy Ansa, DownSouth Press

Island Time by third-generation St. Simons resident Jingle Davis is as fascinating and well written as it is useful. The author parts the Spanish-moss curtain and enlightens us with St. Simons's long, bloody, and ultimately transformative history. A must-read for anyone who has ever enjoyed the evocative beauty of St. Simons Island.

—Mary Kay Andrews, New York Times bestselling author of Spring Fever, Summer Rental, and Savannah Breeze

Many Georgians have long suspected that St. Simons Island packs more interesting history and colorful characters per square, sandy inch than almost any other place in the Deep South. Now there's written proof of it. Island Time is a deeply researched, lushly photographed new book that tells the beginnings-to-present-day story of the small island south of Savannah that was first occupied by Paleo-Indians nearly 5,000 years ago.

—Jill Vejnoska, Atlanta Journal-Constitution

[I]t's no wonder the book seems to sing in celebration as it lays out St. Simon's for everyone to enjoy, from its earliest beginnings to the present-day clash of development and preservation. Though photographs are ample, the book isn't your standard coffee table tome, because the narrative is just as elegant as the photos. It all works well.

—Rebecca McCarthy, Athens Patch

This book is a credit to the staff at the University of Georgia Press. . . . This book is a serious narrative of St. Simons, which is a state treasure trove. Ms. Davis thoroughly researched the rich effluvia of human endeavor built up over time on St. Simons, and she is very much the clear-eyed reporter in telling us what she has found, beginning with the native coastal tribes through the pirates and the Spanish on to the British and General Oglethorpe. . . . If you don't know St. Simons, this book is like a visit needing no sunscreen or mosquito repellant. Every period in the island's history is fascinating, all the way up to modern times, and Ben Galland's camera catches it all: the ruins, the marshes, the beach and, yes, the sunsets, which we have all tried to photograph.

—Pete McCommons, Flagpole

Island Time is well researched, engagingly written, and beautifully presented. It's an essential book for anyone interested in the story of St. Simons Island conveyed by two people who know it well and love it deeply.

Elegant Island Living


Award for Excellence in Documenting Georgia's History, Georgia Historical Records Advisory Council


Georgia Author of the Year Awards, Georgia Writers Association

About the Author/Editor

Jingle Davis (Author)
JINGLE DAVIS was a retired journalist who worked for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution for over twenty years, often covering South Georgia and the coast. She is the author of Island Time: An Illustrated History of St. Simons Island, Georgia and Island Passages: An Illustrated History of Jekyll Island, Georgia (both Georgia).

Benjamin Galland (Photographer)
BENJAMIN GALLAND, born and raised on St. Simons Island, is a photographer and partner with the h2o Creative Group in Brunswick and the photographer for Jingle Davis’s Island Time: An Illustrated History of St. Simons Island, Georgia and Island Passages: An Illustrated History of Jekyll Island, Georgia as well as Buddy Sullivan’s Sapelo: People and Place on a Georgia Sea Island (all Georgia).