Christ Church Frederica
Annual Tour of Homes

Tour Stops on the 2018 Tour of Homes
All Open 10AM until 5 PM (Except Musgrove- Closes at 1PM)       

Private Homes Historic Buildings
Sea Island - 3 Homes Christ Church & Parish House
Sea Island - Ocean Forest Harrington School
East Beach - 2 Homes Musgrove (Closes at 1 PM)
St. Simons - Ocean Front Wesley Memorial
St. Simons - Sea Palms West Slave Cabins
  St. Ignatius Church


Tour Stop # 1 --- ST. IGNATIUS CHURCH
Tour Stop reached by car and accessible 10-5 (except Musgrove - only until 1)
2906 Demere Road

Morning Prayer is held daily at 8:00 am (except Sundays) and Holy Eucharist is celebrated at 5:30 pm on Saturday and 5:00 pm on Sunday. 


SAINT IGNATIUS CHURCH was built in 1886, as a Mission of Christ Church, Frederica, for the African-Americans living on Saint Simons Island. Anson Dodge had Saint Ignatius and three other mission churches built on the island and, under his direction other Episcopal missions were built on the mainland. The hurricane of 1897 – recorded at the time as a cyclone – almost destroyed the little church, and it was rebuilt. Originally located off a little lane leading to Union Memorial (aka Stranger’s) Cemetery and facing East, St. Ignatius was rebuilt in 1898 on Demere Road, facing South. It is built in the traditional cruciform, of heart pine, which inside naturally aged to its present color, the same as Christ Church, Frederica.
The Altar rail is hand-carved.  The Lectern, Bishop’s chair, Priest’s chair, and Baptismal font were all donated by Lovely Lane Chapel. They were placed here when that church was de-consecrated and used as a recreation center. That building has been re-consecrated and is now Lovely Lane Chapel at Epworth-by-the Sea Conference Center. The stained glass windows behind the Altar were made in Philadelphia by the Willet Company. The hand depicts God the Father, the lamb depicts God the Son, and the dove depicts the Holy Spirit. The candlesticks on the Altar were brought from England in 1858. The bell was installed in the 1980's and is from the WWII Liberty Ship Henry Wynkoop. The reed organ was built circa 1900 and installed at Christ Church, Frederica in 1933. The original hand pump is still intact and the pipes are merely decorative.   For years, the windows in the Church were translucent, jalousie-panel glass.  Ten new stained glass windows were designed in 2000 by M.B. Keys, a parishioner of Christ Church Frederica, and made by the Wippell Company of
Exeter, England. The Rt. Rev. Henry I. Louttit, Bishop of Georgia, blessed the new windows April 29, 2001.
THE ORGAN was originally in Christ Church, Frederica; a gift of the Berolzheimer family of Little Saint Simons Island and Stockton, California. It is a reed action pump organ. The original pump handle can still be seen on its side. When electricity came to the north end of the island the organ was electrified. It was placed in Saint Ignatius in 1959.


Tour Stop # 2 --- St. Simons Oceanfront Home
Tour Stop reached by car and accessible 10-5 (except Musgrove - only until 1)



Tour Stop # 3 --- East Beach
Tour Stop reached by car and accessible 10-5 (except Musgrove - only until 1)


Tour Stop # 4 ---East Beach
Tour Stop reached by car and accessible 10-5 (except Musgrove - only until 1)


Tour Stop # 5 --- Sea Palms West
Tour Stop reached by car and accessible 10-5 (except Musgrove - only until 1)



Tour Stop # 6 --- Historic Harrington School
Tour Stop reached by car and accessible 10-5 (except Musgrove - only until 1)

The Historic Harrington School House, formerly known as the Harrington Graded School, was built in the 1920s and served as the main educational structure for three African American communities on St. Simons Island. It hosted grades 1-7 until desegregation in the 1960s when students left to attend St. Simons Elementary.. In 1968 it was converted to a day care center and used for this purpose until 1970. It was largely abandoned after that and sat unused for decades. 

To preserve the one-room historic Harrington School House Mrs. Isadore Hunter donated her portion of heirs property land to the St. Simons Land Trust and Glynn County in 2004. Since 2004  the St. Simons African American Heritage Coalition, in partnership with The St. Simons Land Trust, has been active in the fundraising, restoration planning, management and operations of the School. The actual restoration of the School began in 2010 with an overall restoration cost of $325,000. The School officially re-opened with a ribbon cutting in August of 2017.

Over the years, the school house was much more than just a place to learn. The community gathered here for Halloween apple-bobbing parties in the fall, plays and covered-dish dinners, and visits by Santa and Christmas exchanges. In the spring, there were Easter activities, the plaiting of the Maypole, the prom and graduation. Community organizations such as the Harrington Parent-Teacher Association and the Harrington Civic Club also utilized the building for meetings and fundraising events.



Tour Stop # 7 --- Musgrove - Frederica Road
Tour Stop reached by car and available ONLY from 10 AM to 1

The Musgrove Retreat and Conference Center, under the stewardship of The Brenn Foundation, is a beautiful picturesque hidden sanctuary on the banks of Village Creek that takes you back in time. Musgrove is rich with history from its construction in 1938 by Nancy Reynolds Bagley, daughter and heiress to the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco fortune to President Carter’s first pre-inaugural cabinet meeting.
Musgrove was named after Mary Musgrove, a pioneer acclaimed as the Pocahontas and Sacagawea of the South and known as a cultural liaison between colonial Georgia and Native American societies for her peace keeping efforts and entrepreneurship. “Musgroves” – so-called by returning conference participants – have become synonymous with thoughtful gatherings that discuss political, environmental and social issues of great local, domestic and global importance. Musgrove primarily focuses on hosting non-profit events including retreats, conferences and fundraisers with an emphasis on giving back to our local community. However, the property is also a picturesque and charming backdrop for select weddings and family reunions throughout the year.

Musgrove boasts nearly 300 acres of primarily preserved natural splendor including marshland between Sea Island and St. Simons Island. Its six residences were designed in the old "Low-Country" style with heavy use of tabby and cypress along with old Savannah gray brick that emphasize the under-stated rustic elegance of the property.

Today, the grandchildren of philanthropist Nancy Susan Reynolds continue to lovingly maintain their grandmother's home and vision with purpose. Recently, portions of the property were sold to the St. Simons Land Trust to create more community park and recreational space for the public.


Tour Stop # 8 --- Christ Church Parish House
Tour Headquarters
6329 Frederica Road

       The parish house of historic Christ Church serves as tour headquarters for the Annual Tour of Homes and Gardens. 
        Tea sandwiches, cookies and drinks are offered to our guests by the gracious ladies of the church.  We invite you to purchase one of our fabulous cookbooks.  As a remembrance of the tour, a token of friendship, or simply an addition to a growing cookbook collection, the Christ Church, Frederica Cookbook encompasses quality, beauty and history visible in its namesake. 
         The tour headquarters will make a comfortable stopping place during the day and restroom facilities are available.


Tour Stop # 9 --- Christ Church
and Wesley Memorial Gardens
Tour Stop reached by car and accessible 10-5 (except Musgrove - only until 1)
6329 Frederica Road
(more data)

Christ Church had its beginning when General Oglethorpe came to St. Simons Island in 1736 to build the fort and town of Frederica.  He brought with the soldiers and settlers, an ordained clergyman of the Church of England, the Reverend Charles Wesley, in order that the colony might have the services of the church from its start.  The Board of Trustees ordered a chapel to be built and had three hundred acres of land set aside for the support of the minister and the church.  It is on some of that land that Christ Church stands today.  In 1884, the remains of the old church were torn down, and the present building was erected on this site in 1886 by the Reverend Anson Green Phelps Dodge, Jr., in memory of his first wife, Ellen Ada Phelps Dodge. 

Sunday services are held at Christ Church, Frederica, at 8 am, 9:15 am, and 11:15 am.  Weekday evening prayer is held at 5:00 pm daily and Holy Eucharist is celebrated at 11:30 am on Friday. Consult the church website at www.christchurchfrederica.org for more details. 

Wesley Memorial Gardens

Established in 1986 to commemorate the ministries of John and Charles Wesley, the Wesley Memorial Gardens offer a calm retreat on Tour Day.  Dedicated in 1988, the two acre garden has as its focal point an 18-foot high Celtic Cross, sculpted from Georgia granite.  Gravel paths wind throughout the natural setting, which has been impeccably landscaped to showcase some 60 varieties of 4,000 azaleas and other native shrubs. 

Directions:  Take Frederica Road north towards the round-about with Lawrence Road. Travel north on Frederica Road from the round-about.  The Church will be on your left in approximately one mile.  The Gardens are across the street from the Church.


Tour Stop # 10 --- Slave Cabins - Gascoigne Bluff
Tour Stop reached by car and accessible 10-5 (except Musgrove - only until 1)

Hamilton Plantation, owned by James Hamilton, a native of Scotland, was located on Gascoigne Bluff.  The Bluff was named for Captain James Gascoigne, Commander of the British sloop “Hawk,” which brought General Oglethorpe to St. Simons Island in the early 1700s.  The Bluff became a storehouse for marine supplies, ship repair facilities and, in effect, was Georgia’s first naval base.  Hamilton Plantation (late 1790s) was a working plantation producing long-staple Sea Island cotton along with oak and pine timbers.

Of the long row of tabby slave cabins built near the plantation house during the early 1830s, two remain today.  They were constructed of tabby, which is a concrete-like mixture of lime, sand, water and oyster shells.   The cabins were divided in the center by a wall and fireplace creating two rooms that housed two families.  The slaves who lived in these cabins were likely the house slaves.

Cassina Garden Club began meeting in these cabins in 1932 and was deeded the property by the county in 1950.  Cassina Garden Club has just completed a historically correct restoration of their cabins, one as it was in the early 1830s when it was constructed and the other as it was during the “Mill Days” of the 1870s to the 1920s.  Not surprisingly, this beautiful property was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1988 by the U.S. Department of the Interior.


Tour Stop A  --- Sea Island
Home reached by bus service from Gascoigne Bluff


Tour Stop B --- Ocean Forest - Sea Island
Home reached by bus service from Gascoigne Bluff

Tour Stop C --- Sea Island
Home reached by bus service from Gascoigne Bluff


Tour Stop D --- Sea Island Town Home
Home reached by bus service from Gascoigne Bluff