Where did Georgia grow it's first peach or try to grow Mulberry Bushes? That would be the Herb House, which is now a delightful part of Savannah's famous Pirates House.
Every city has it’s start and Savannah has the evidence to back it up. Built in 1734, the Herb House is the oldest standing house in Savannah Georgia and is possibly the oldest standing structure in the entire state of Georgia.
It was a small building which was built on a 10 acre plot of land in to house the gardener who worked there.
The plot of land was assigned to become a botanical garden that modeled the Chelsea Botanical Garden in London, England. The garden was dedicated to Oglethorpe’s Trustees. Oglethorpe recruited botanists from around the world to acquire plants for the project such as cotton, spices, indigo, and medicinal herbs. The garden was hoped to bring success in the wine and silk industries and was centered on growing mulberry trees. The soil and weather conditions of Georgia were not compatible with the mulberry trees and it was not successful with wine or silk. However, it did distribute peach trees which Georgia is currently renowned for. The garden was also highly successful in growing cotton which later became a staple of Georgia’s economy.
In 1754, the people of Savannah decided the need for the botanical garden was no longer relevant. Savannah was quickly becoming a port town and The Herb House was transformed into an Inn and tavern for seamen visiting from abroad.
The Pirates’ House is home to some rare early edition pages of Treasure Island, by Robert Louis Stevenson. The pages can be seen hanging on the walls of the Captain’s room and the Treasure room in the Pirates’ House.
The current owners of The Pirates’ House claim that Captain Flint, a pirate mentioned in the book Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson, died in the upstairs bedroom at the Pirate’s House. However, as Flint is a completely fictional character, this story cannot be historically true, and the additional claim that Flint haunts the place as a ghost suggests that these claims are not intended to be taken seriously. Moreover, although the novel states that Flint died in Savannah, nothing in it states or suggests that The Pirates’ House is the location of his deathbed.