Visiting the Davenport House Museum is essential in experiencing the history of Savannah and its Historic preservation renaissance. Throughout its fifty-years plus history as a museum, the Davenport House Museum has striven to provide visitors with a true and vivid encounter with a uniquely Savannah story.
The mission of the Isaiah Davenport House Museum is to preserve and interpret the American Federal-style house, and the artifacts within, built by master builder Isaiah Davenport for his household with an emphasis on the years 1820-27, in order to educate, enrich and inspire our visitors and the community, as well as recognize the historical role of the house in the founding of Historic Savannah Foundation. (Davenport House Committee – 11/5/2005)
The Davenport House is situated on Columbia Square at the corner of State and Habersham Streets in the Historic District of Savannah, Georgia. The house is one of the oldest brick structures in the city owning to common use of wood construction during the town’s earliest history. Sitting directly on the street the two-and-a-half story urban dwelling contains a total of 6,800 square feet involving a basement level (which originally housed the kitchen, storage and possible slaves’ “personal” space), the first floor housing the public areas, and the second and third floors which were bedrooms and storage space. The Davenport home sits on Columbia Ward’s lot number 13, which originally measured (and continues to measure) 60 feet by 90 feet. The rear portion of the lot at one time held a carriage house, garden and privy. The site now contains lot number 14 which is the museum’s courtyard garden. The garden was a Bicentennial project of Savannah’s Trustees Garden Club. It has since been redesigned under the guidance of renowned English landscape designer Penelope Hobhouse. While not a true restoration, the garden is maintained by volunteers “in the spirit of the original owners” and is planted with varieties of plants known to the Davenports and typical of coastal Georgia.
To complement its fine daily house tour, the Davenport House offers before- and after- hours special tours, activities and living history programs throughout the year which enlivens the story it tells.