Juliette Gordon Low Historic District
Juliette Gordon Low District
Wayne-Gordon House in 2011
|Location||10 Oglethorpe Ave., E., 330 Drayton St., 329 Abercorn St., Savannah, Georgia|
|Architect||William Jay; John S. Norris|
|Architectural style||Early Republic, Italianate|
|NRHP Reference #||66000276|
|Added to NRHP||October 15, 1966|
|Designated NHLD||June 23, 1965|
Juliette Gordon Low Historic District consists of three buildings - the Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace also known as "Wayne-Gordon House", First Girl Scout Headquarters which was the carriage house for the Andrew Low House, converted for use by the Girl Scouts in May - June 1912, and the Andrew Low House, is a site in Savannah, Georgia significant for its association with Juliette Gordon Low and the founding of the Girl Scouts of the USA.
The district includes the Wayne-Gordon House at 10 Oglethorpe Avenue, East, which is also known as Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace, the First Girl Scout Headquarters (Andrew Low Carriage House) at 330 Drayton Street and the Andrew Low House at 329 Abercorn Street.
The Birthplace was designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1965. the initial designation included the First Girl Scout Headquarters. the Andrew Low House was later added to the designation creating the Juliette Gordon Low Landmark District.
Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace
The Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace, also known as the Wayne-Gordon House, is owned by the Girl Scouts of the USA, and is a popular historic house museum for the general public Girl Scout national center commonly known as "The Birthplace". The house was built in 1818 - 1821 for James Moore Wayne, then the mayor of Savannah. Wayne was appointed to fill an unexpired term in the US House of Representatives, and then to the US Supreme Court, taking him to live in Washington, DC. In 1831, Wayne sold the house to his niece Sarah Stites Gordon, and her husband William Washington Gordon I, the first of four generations of Gordons to live in the house. They were Juliette Gordon Low's grandparents.
Juliette Low's parents, William Washington Gordon II and Eleanor Kinzie Gordon made major changes to the house in 1886, adding the fourth floor and the side piazza. Juliette Gordon Low was married in 1886, and spent much of the rest of her life living in England, though visiting her parents and other family and friends in New York, New Jersey and Savannah every year.
As a restless and energetic widow in 1911, Juliette Gordon Low met Robert Baden Powell, founder of the Boy Scouts. He recruited her to become involved in the Girl Guides, and in 1912 she returned home to Savannah to start the movement in the US. While staying in her parents home, she telephoned her cousin, Nina Anderson Pape, saying, "Come right over! I've got something for the girls of Savannah, and all America, and all the world, and we're going to start it tonight." She recruited girls all over town, on the steps of churches and the synagogue, from her cousin Nina's students, and the daughters of friends and acquaintances. Juliette Low held elaborate teas in her mother's parlor, reputedly better than the tea her mother Eleanor Kinzie Gordon held for President Taft.
The Girl Scouts of the USA purchased the home in 1953, and have restored the house to reflect the 1880s Victorian period. Opened in 1956 as a historic house museum, the home features many original Gordon family furnishings, including art by Juliette Gordon Low herself. The Birthplace was designated as Savannah's first National Historic Landmark in 1965, on the first National Register of Historic Places.
The Birthplace is open for tours for the general public year 'round Girl Scout troops enjoy the Girl Scout Heritage Visit by reservation, school groups investigate the life of Juliette Low through special programs, and bus groups reserve tours tailored to their needs.
- "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2007-01-23.
- "Juliette Gordon Low District". National Historic Landmark summary listing. National Park Service. Retrieved 2008-04-30.
- Marti Gerdes, Robert W. Blythe, and Patty Henry (March 21, 2005) National Register of Historic Places Inventory-Nomination: Juliette Gordon Low Historic District (Revised Documentation) / (1) Wayne-Gordon House (also known as the Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace), (2) First Girl Scout Headquarters (Andrew Low Carriage House), (3) Andrew Low House, National Park Service and Photos to accompany original documentation, exterior and interior, from 1870, 1907, 1920, 1980, and 1986
- Official website
- Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace at Girl Scouts of the USA
- Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) No. GA-210, "Low House, 329 Abercorn Street, Savannah, Chatham County, GA", 5 photos, 2 data pages, supplemental material
- HABS No. GA-211, "Wayne-Gordon House, 10 East Oglethorpe Street, Savannah, Chatham County, GA", 9 photos, 3 data pages, supplemental material