Jekyl Island Club, Brunswick,
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To live on an island! Who among us
but has felt the fascination of this idea? From the youngster
playing his first game of pirates and buried treasure to the oldster
who is beginning to weary somewhat of the pressure of his
omnipresent fellowmen, we all know the lure of the romance which
life on an island suggests.
Yet to the civilized man and woman of today romance is
not enough. There must be comfort and refinement, social
intercourse and dignity—things not easily found in combination with
the isolation and independence of island life.
Yet for men of imagination and means the improbably is
not always the impossible; and the Jekyl Island Club exists today as
the ingenious solution of the difficult problem of finding profound
seclusion and congenial companionship in one and the same spot.
Along the curving coast of Georgia lies a string of
islands, far enough out for the breezes of the Atlantic to temper
their ardent sunshine, close enough to the mainland to be accessible
About the centre of the bow, opposite the point where
the Brunswick River debouches into the sea, lies Jekyl, eleven miles
long and two miles wide, a gem of sub-tropical verdure, its thickets
of bay, live-oak, gum and evergreen laced with wisteria and
flowering creepers, and its savannas dotted with clumps of palmetto
and wild orange.
*The write of this sketch wishes to acknowledge his indebtedness to
Mr. Franklin H. Head, author of Legends of Jekyl Island,
and to Mr. Charles Spalding Wylly, author of Memories
(of Saint Simons). From both these works he has borrowed
extensively, as also from Mr. J.A. Scrymser’s Jekyl Island,
which is incorporated almost entire.
By day masses of wild flowers, and
at night the splendor of myriad fireflies, light up its open spaces;
and always, above the song of its mocking-birds, can be heard the
rolling music of the surf as it beats on the miles of hard white
beach the song of the sea.
But Jekyl is more than a few square
miles of beautiful scenery. Like its neighbor island to the north,
Saint Simons, it is rich in historical associations; its soil also
“is humanized and made dear by the spirits of those who have lived
on and in its neighborhood.”
It first dawns on the historical horizon in the report
made by Sir Francis Drake to Queen Elizabeth in 1587.
After plundering various Spanish settlements along the
coast of South and Central America, he sailed north and then, as he
“On the 17th
we took an observation, and found ourselves in latitude 30 deg. 30
min. N., and near a large island, which we felt sure was the land
where we had information of a Spanish settlement of magnitude.
Seeing some log houses, we decided to make a landing. We unfurled
the standard of Saint George and approached the shore in
great force, that we might impress the enemy with the great
puissance of your Majesty. The accursed Spaniards, concealed behind
the trees, fired upon us, and a sore and cruel fight seemed pendent,
when the enemy, stricken with fear, incontinently fled to their
homes, with their habiliments of war. One of our men was sorely
wounded by the Spanish Captain, whom we presently made prisoner,
and, having set up a gallows, we there hanged him in a chain by the
middle, and afterwards consumed with fire, gallows and all.
“To us was the good God most merciful and gracious,
in that he permitted us to kill eighteen Spaniards, bitter enemies
of your sweet Majesty. We further wasted the country and brought it
to utter ruin. We burned their houses and killed their few horses,
mules and cattle, eating what we could of the fresh beef and
carrying the rest aboard our ships. Having in mind the merciful
disposition of your gracious Majesty, we did not kill the women and
children, but having destroyed upon the island all their provisions
and property, and taken away all their weapons, we left them to
“In view was another considerable island, fifteen
miles to the northward, concerning which we asked of the women if
any Spaniards dwelt thereon. The women were most ungracious, sullen
and obstinate, perchance from their husbands having been killed
before their eyes, and wickedly refused to answer us; but after we
had burned a hole with a hot iron through the tongue of the most
venomous of their number, they eftsoons told us that there were no
Spaniards upon other island; that it was the haunt of a solitary
Frenchman named Jacques, who claimed it as his own, and that
from him it was known as ‘Jacques Ile.’ Fearing that the
women, instigated by the devil, were deceiving us, we visited the
other island, with the holy determination to exterminate any enemies
of your sacred Majesty thereon, but found the story of the women was
true. The Frenchman Jacques had a hut near the water, where
he lived with an Indian pagan as his wife. He had a liberal store
of turtle’s eggs, gathered in the sand, which we took from him, as
also his carbine and forty pounds of ambergris, which he had
collected from the sea, but did him no further harm. We took here
another observation, finding the latitude 31 deg. 10 min. N.”
Obviously the first island visited
by this gentlemanly pirate was Cumberland, to the south of Jekyl,
and the second Jekyl itself.
The name Jacques’ Ile attributed to it is
interesting, as antedating its modern title, supposed given to it by
Oglethorpe 150 years later, and raising the question whether
Oglethorpe really did name the island after his friend Sir
Joseph Jekyl, or merely adopted the local original title,
corrupted in the course of years.
In Dampier’s Two Voyages to the Bay of
Campeachy, published in 1729, Dampier refers to Jekyl
in an account of buccaneering raid he made on the Spanish American
coast in 1684 as follows:
“The next morning,
being now nearly arrived at the Florida coast, we landed upon an
island in latitude 31 deg. 12 min. N. for a supply of fresh water…..
“Near the spot where
we landed we found an abundance of fresh water and also a few huts,
which were inhabited by peaceable savages. Much surprised were we
to find that they spoke a language in which were found occasionally
French words. WE soon learned that they were largely the
descendants of a Frenchman who had long before lived upon the island
and married many Indian wives. From him the place was called ‘Jacques
Island.’ The natural depravity of the pagans appeared, as we
noticed that the French words were few in their usual conversation,
but that thay had hoarded many French curses and bitter profanities,
which they heaped upon us as we left the island, for no other
reason, as we could conjecture, except that we had taken with us
their cattle, weapons, furs, provisions and other articles which
might be useful to us thereafter.”
Here again we notice the cheerful
way in which robbery and pillage of the harmless natives is
mentioned as the most
natural thing in the world, as well as the
robber’s heartfelt surprise at the unexpected and unchristian
contumacy of his victims.
But it was in 1734 that Jekyl really made its appearance
The year previous to that date, General James E.
Oglethorpe had landed at and named Savannah, thus founding what
was ultimately to be the State of Georgia.
Realizing the importance of having outposts from which
he could watch the activities of the Spaniards, he settled a Scotch
colony from Inverness on Saint Simons, and, two years later, erected
Frederica, the settlement, into a garrison town, building barracks
and quartering there six companies of his regiment.
He had already placed Lieutenant Horton on Jekyl
and established a plantation and a brewery (the first place in which
English beer was brewed in America) there for the sustenance of his
Later, in order to have the seclusion and dignity proper
to a governor, and at the same time to be within hailing distance of
his principal garrison, he took up his own residence on Jekyl,
building a roomy mansion (of logs), where Lady Oglethorpe set
up housekeeping; and it is during the few years that the
Oglethorpes were in residence here that we are really in touch
with the life of the island.
Both the Wesleys were in Georgia at the time;
Charles as Secretary to the Governor, John as Missionary
to the Indians, the latter’s place on his retirement in 1737 being
taken by Whitfield.
There was free and frequent intercourse between Jekyl
and Savannah, and many interesting letters are in existence which
draw vividly the daily life and manners of the dwellers on the
For instance—Lady Oglethorpe writes in 1734 to
her husband, then on a trip to Savannah:
departure, my dearest husband, all the pigs have escaped into the
dreadful wilderness about us, and we fear daily that thay will be
captured and eaten by the savages. The Chief, Altamaha, and
his band, are still upon the island, and yesterday he came and
begged tobacco and sugar, and also demanded of me our maid servant
Elizabeth as his wife, much to her astonishment and terror.
He was dressed in all his barbaric finery, painted and bedaubed in
as many colors as the coat of Joseph, and decorated with feathers,
bear’s claws, and bright colored shells, as befitted a man equipped
for female conquest. The wretched pagan has already three wives,
whom he treats worse than beasts of burden, and I think this
somewhat influenced Elizabeth, as, had he been unmarried, the
prospect of being a queen, even of the wild and savage Tuscaroras,
might have moved her.”
Again, in 1763, Charles Wesley
writes from Jekyl to Lady Oglethorpe herself in Savannah:
“I have this day
returned from the trip to the Ogeechee River, where I suffered many
hardships and privations from the inhospitable weather. With my
brother John, I preached to the Indians, whenever we could
find them in any considerable numbers, although I fear but little
impression was made upon them….
“Last evening I
wandered to the north end of the island and stood upon the narrow
point, which your ladyship will recall as there projecting into the
ocean. The vastness of the watery waste, as compared with my
standing place, called to mind the breifness of human life, and the
immensity of its consequences, and my surroundings inspired me to
write a hymn, commencing:
on a narrow neck of land,
“Twixt two unbounded seas, I stand,
which I trust may pleasure your
ladyship, weak and feeble as it is when compared with the songs of
the sweet psalmist of Israel. I feel that here, like Moses, I am a
stranger in a strange land, and I pray hourly that when the night
cometh, and when deep sleep falleth me, I may not be found without a
and John Wesley, writing to the
General at the Island, admits that he himself is not above
experiencing the weakness of the flesh:
“Verily the flesh is
weak, for I cannot but long for the day when again I may visit you
and enjoy the flesh-pots of Jekyl Island. I can with difficulty eat
the food of the savages. Insects bite and destroy my sleep. I am
as a skeleton, and the evil one continually suggest that I murmur at
my lot, and seek an easier way in which to server the Lord.”
But perhaps the most illuminating
and amusing of all the documents extant bearing upon Jekyl Island,
is a letter from Lady Oglethorpe to her father-in-law:
“Dear and Honored Parent:
“I take my pen in
hand to inform you that my dear husband and myself are well and I
hope these few lines may find you in the enjoyment of the same great
blessing. We are now established in our new home on Jekyl Island,
and I would fain give you a picture of this abode of the Governor of
this promising colony. The mansion is built of pine logs,
plastered, where plastered at all, with clay, and surrounded by a
dense forest. The house is very large and commodious, but lacking
many of the conveniences of our pleasant home in Surrey. We sleep
on beds made of pine leaves, which are most comfortable and exhale a
balsamic fragrance supposed to be
conducive to health. Our floors are of split pine logs, and about
the walls are wooden pegs upon which to hang our gowns. Much of our
china was broken on our journey hither, and we use instead the
pewter mugs and plates brought for our servants. A few red savages
are near us, living in wigwams, who beg often for tobacco, but bring
us in return an abundance of venison and fish. The secretary of the
colony, Charles Wesley, dwells with us upon the island, and
is zealous to save the souls of the Indians who come hither to hunt
and fish. He baptized a week since one Indian and made him a part
of Christianity, but later, for what reasons we cannot divine,
though certainly through evil temptations of the father of idolatry,
the devil, he suddenly cast off the Christian religion and abandoned
the true, divine worship. Mr. Wesley has also the gift of
verse, and has written many sweet hymns, which we sing in our family
“From what I have
written, you must not infer that we live altogether a lonely and
quite life. We have twice visited Charleston, the principal city of
South Carolina, where we have been sumptuously entertained by the
governor and principal citizens, whom we have, of course, invited to
visit us in return. Recently we received word that our invitations
would be accepted. We had informed them of our primitive mode of
life, which they fully realized, having been in similar conditions
themselves. Last Wednesday we were startled by a long blast from a
conch shell, and on going to the beach saw a large party approaching
in a flat-boat, men, women, negroes, horses and dogs. They were
soon disembarked and at the house, where General Oglethorpe
made them welcome with an abundance of rum made by the Puritans in
that part of America called New England. They then told us that not
overtax our hospitalities, they had
brought with them an abundance of food and servants, and proposed to
go at once to some suitable place upon the shore and roast oysters.
We set out for a cove about a mile distant from our home. The
progress towards it was a striking and curious pageant. First,
marched as trumpeter, a stalwart negro, blowing a conch shell and
producing a dismal and incessant blare. Then General Oglethorpe
on horseback, with myself behind him on a pillion, and a negro on a
mule, carrying my best hat in a box, lest it be destroyed by the
trees and bushes. Then our family coach, with one wheel missing
from an encounter with a stump, the axle being held up by a pole,
and, within, the family of Governor Pickens, his wife, sister
and a niece, Miss Mercy Pickens. Then two open wagons with
the other ladies of the party, and some jugs of rum and boxes of
food. About these rode the gentleman on horses and mules, among
them Mr. George Moultrie, a gallant young man who is soon to
wed Miss Mercy, before named. Around the cavalcade swarmed
the negroes, shouting and laughing, rolling their white eyes, and
showing their white teeth in contrast to their shining black skins,
and singing songs full of melody and pathos.
“The road to the
beach, while rude and rough for vehicles by reason of roots and
stumps, is of wonderful beauty, bordered with great growths of
evergreen, oaks and magnolias, with thickets of myrtle and bay, and
a carpet of dwarf palmetto, all of most lustrous green, and the
trees often festooned or bound together with trailing garlands of
pale, gray moss. The most perfect art could devise nothing more
beautiful than the tropical glories of this forest drive. When we
reached the cove the negroes waded into the water and brought ashore
great baskets of oysters, which they roasted in a fire kindled from
branches of the
fragrant pine. General
Oglethorpe brewed a large tub of rum punch, while I made a bowl
of delicious sangaree with wine from your own cellar, which has been
with us from the time of our leaving dear old England. No one
neglected these beverages, and with the oysters, the cheese and
other viands with which we were provided, a royal banquet was
enjoyed. Many of the gentlemen were nearly overcome with the rum
punch, although insisting that it was the roasted oysters which made
their legs unsteady, and this had nearly led Mr. Wesley into
serious trouble with Mr. Moultrie, whose almost maudlin
attentions to his sweetheart, Miss Mercy, were constant and
even annoying to her.
“As Mr. Wesley
drank no punch, they insisted he should sing, and he commenced one
of his hymns which is a favorite with us:
‘Depths of mercy, can there by
Mercy still reserved for me?—
Mr. Moultrie, ‘none of your damned presumption. Mercy is
not reserved for you or any of your kind. She is mine and mine
alone.’ General Oglethorpe interfered and endeavored to
explain, but Mr. Moultrie would listen to nothing, and
proposed to give the Secretary a drubbing on the spot. I succeeded
in quieting him, and asked Mr. Wesley to substitute another
hymn, whereupon he commenced:
day of jubilee is come
Return ye ransomed sinners home.’
“’What,’ shouted my
husband, ‘are you ordering away my guests on their very arrival?
None of your foolishness!’ ‘Sir,’ said Mr. Wesley, ‘I was
not addressing your guests. I do not consider them as ransomed
“’What do you mean?’
said Governor Pickens; ‘go and drum your nonsense into the
wooly heads of the negroes.’
“The riot was
presently at an end, Mr. Wesley returning to the house, and
was forgotten after the gentlemen had slept off their potations.
“The party remained
with us for three days, until the rum was exhausted.”
With all sympathy for the reverend
gentleman whose taste in sacred song led him into such unexpected
troubles, it is hardly possible to read this artless narrative
without a smile, and the concluding words of our quotation seem to
give a singularly human touch to the whole affair.
Whitfield built and
Orphanage on Jekyl while Oglethorpe was still there, and we
have two letters on the subject from him to General Oglethorpe,
written at dates some thirty years apart.
In the first he refers to slavery as “an infamous
traffic in human flesh” and condemns severely the acceptance of
money donated by slave-owners for the support of his institution.
In the second, having in the meantime discovered that he
could not make the Orphanage support itself by free labor, and
having been presented with three husky negroes by a converted
Carolinian, he seems to have quite changed his mind, and praises the
Lord for the beautiful harvests raised by these three slaves and
nine others he had purchased.
But these patriarchal times in
Jekyl were soon over, for in 1742 came the Spanish invasion; and
5,000 regular soldiers and 29 vessels of war approached to answer
Oglethorpe’s attack on Florida.
To meet them, the British could only muster their single
regiment at Frederica, a few of the Darien Rangers
and Noble’s Scouts; but in the
extraordinary victory of Bloody Marsh, on Saint Simons, the enemy
was defeated with a loss of over a thousand men; and the invasion
Jekyl, however, had suffered terribly. The Spaniards
had landed and burnt down all the buildings on the south of the
island and ravaged the plantations; and in consequence the General
transferred his home and headquarters to Saint Simons.
Then, in 1763, the treaty between Spain and Britain,
which made Florida a British possession, finally deprived Jekyl and
the other islands of their military and political importance; and
they became, as they have since remained, dependent upon their
geographical and social characteristics for distinction.
The French Royalists
The French Revolution was not
without its effects even on so remote a shore as that of Jekyl.
In 1788 a syndicate of five French gentlemen, royalists
all, disgusted with France and Frenchmen, endeavored to found a
feudal community on Sapelo Island as a peaceful refuge from the
Revolutionary storms of their native land.
However, there was no peace for them even here, and
owing to a quarrel with one of their number, four of them, MM.
Poulain du Bignon, de Mousse, de Chapeldelaine and
de Marlee, within a couple of years gave up their holdings on
Saint Simons and settled, instead, on Jekyl.
Of these men Poulain du Bignon was easily the
first. An adventurer of the D’Artagnan type, in his youth he had
served for years in the French army in India. As
artillery-instructor at the court of a native rajah he had enjoyed
the barbaric splendor of an oriental despotism, while later he
commanded a French privateer and preyed for years on British
What unwritten history, what
unknown tragedies were consigned to oblivion when his house was torn
down, and bundles of records thrown into the fire by a carpenter who
could not read French, only the imagination can conceive.
During the War of 1812, the shadow of war once again lay
over the island. The Federal troops landed, and doubtful of the
loyalty of the inhabitants, sacked the dwelling houses, though the
du Bignon family had escaped to the mainland, leaving a
confidential slave to bury the gold plate and other treasures.
From this time on the story is one
of dwindling resources and of an estate increasingly reclaimed by
wild nature, until the war between the States gave the finishing
touch, and turned all the flourishing plantations of the
neighborhood, rice, cotton and cane, into desolation.
In 1888, the heirs of the du Bignon family sold
the island—making the request that the old family burial ground
should be held sacred—to some Northern men, who were seeking in the
south a place of rest, a spot where they could lay aside the worries
and insistencies of their business, remote from the confusion of the
outside world, surrounded only by the friends they wished to meet,
enjoy sport of all kinds in the open air—or the dolce far niente
if they preferred.
And so, after what was practically a century of
desolation, the Jekyl Island Club, with membership limited to one
hundred, was formed and Jekyl Island once more took up its place in
the story of the land.
Associations of the Neighborhood
Though the literary associations of
Jekyl itself are principally concerned with the Wesleys and
the Oglethorpes, the neighborhood is one of unusual literary
Sidney Lanier has celebrated the “clean salt air”
of the marshes of Cumberland. Basil Hall has written of the
spell of sister island Saint Simons. There
also Audubon stayed, and on the occasion of his second visit
to America in 1846, Sir Charles Lyell, the famous English
geologist, wrote in praise of its life and its people. Miss
Bremmer, author of Homes in the New World, and Miss
Amelia Murray both visited it and recorded their impressions,
and here it was that Aaron Burr drew out the plan of his
“Phantom Empire,” though the house in which he wrote on Saint Simons
was undermined in 1824 by a freshet and carried away.
In 1838 Fanny Kemble lived on Saint Simons, and
though her house was destroyed in 1863 by Federal troops, her
Memories are full of the beauty and happiness of life in the
On Cumberland, too, “Light Horse Harry” Lee lies
buried, and there the “Phantom Coach” appears; while Brunswick city,
on the mainland, is famous as the place where that last slave ship
to cross the ocean, The Wanderer, landed her cargo of five
hundred Africans in 1859.
Even the idea of an island club in these parts is not
The planters of Saint Simons, in 1820, formed a club for
social pleasure, called the Saint Clair’s Club, whose meetings were
held in the Saint Clair Mansion, owned by Major Pearce Butler.
Here monthly dinners were given by the members in
rotation, each as his turn came furnishing dinner, service, and the
wines and punch. Visitors were invited from Savannah and Augusta,
and great competition grew up among the members, each striving for
the reputation of having been host at the most convivial meeting,
where the best stories and the most extraordinary adventures were
The dinner on these occasions was not served in courses,
save that the two soups, one a clam broth, the other chicken
mulligatawny, were brought on first; the fish, shrimp pies, crabs
(in shell), roasts and vegetables, were all placed in
one service; the dessert was simple, tartlets
of orange marmalade, dried fruits and nuts. The dishes disposed of,
amid general gossip and talk, and the cloth drawn, the great
punchbowl with its mixture of rum, brandy, sugar, lemon-juice and
peel, was brought in. The wine glasses were pushed aside and stubby
pottle-shaped glass mugs were handed around; and the chairman of the
meeting, rising, announced that the health of the President of the
United States would be drank, standing and with cheers. After this
opening of the evening, there was much filling of mugs, nodding of
heads, one to the other, with short words of good wishes, such as
“Happy days to you,” “Here’s to you,” and the like.
Then followed stories, songs and arguments in which
everyone, guest or member, was expected to prove his mettle. Then
nine strikes and “Auld Lang Syne” is sung and all with linked
hands. Good-nights are shouted, and the members and their guests
ride away attended by their body servants, who are very watchful and
will not leave their masters (for the punch has been strong) until
they see them safely disposed on their respective couches; for such
are the manners and customs of our folk of a century since.
The Island Today
Since that time, good taste, energy
and wealth have turned beautiful Jekyl into a little paradise of
comfort and health-giving relaxation.
Negotiations for the purchase of the islands were
brought to a successful termination February 1, 1888, and the titles
passed to the newly organized Jekyl Island Club, with a membership
limited to one hundred.
As anticipated, Jekyl Island has proven to be most
ideally situated, remote from the confusion and stress of the
outside world and yet within easy reach of all the business centres
of the country.
The island embraces, altogether,
twenty-two square miles or fourteen thousand acres. On its eastern
side are eleven miles of beach as hard as a shell road, and on the
western side is a landing which is reached by a pleasant sail in the
Club Steamer, from Brunswick.
The Club House is a large structure of brick and faces
the bay from a gently undulating lawn. The Club House is equipped
with every modern improvement, besides spacious drawing and
reception rooms en suite with bathrooms sufficient for the
accommodation of one hundred guests. The restaurant is perfect,
both as regards cooking and service, and “Jekyl Oysters,” “Jekyl
Terrapin” and planked Shad are features of the Club table that
cannot be surpassed.
Attached to the Club House is the Club Annex, containing
eight apartments, belonging to Henry H. Vail, General
Edmund Hayes, Mrs. Samuel Spencer, J.J. Albright,
Mrs. John S. Kennedy, Cornelius N. Bliss, James W.
Ellsworth and Charles Lanier.
There is another apartment house, too, known as the
“Sans Souci,” having six apartments which are owned by Frederick
G. Bourne, James J. Hill, J. Pierpont Morgan,
Robert C. Pruyn, William Rockefeller, and James A.
On the grounds, also, are the private residences of
Charles S. Maurice, Edwin Gould, Mrs. Hester E. Shrady,
R.T. Crane, Jr., Walton Ferguson, William
Rockefeller, Henry K. Porter, and Frank H. Goodyear.
The Club members maintain a well-equipped School House
for the children of its white employees, also a summer day and night
school which is well attended by the Club’s colored employees, old
An electric plant supplies all of the buildings and
grounds with electric lights and an excellent water supply is
obtained from artesian wells.
A fine vegetable garden supplies
the Club with early and delicious vegetables.
There is a well-equipped Livery Stable, with carriages
and liveried drivers and also saddle horses; and, in addition, a
Club Stable where the horses and carriages of the members are cared
for. Lately, a roomy garage for automobiles had been added.
Religious services are held in a very attractive Union
Chapel. Worshippers here recall the beautiful services in the past
conducted by Bishops Potter, Deane, Nelson and
Reese and Dr. Schauffler. The Club waiters compose
Too much cannot be said of the attractiveness and beauty
of the thirty miles of drives, also of the bridle and bicycle paths,
through the pine and live oak forests and the palmetto, holly and
magnolia, thence out on the magnificent beach. During a drive on
the old plantation roads one often sees wild deer and bevies of
On the inland water there are steam launches, boats and
canoes for the use of the members.
The new golf links of the Club are, it is claimed, the
finest in the South. In addition to golf, there are two tennis
courts and a croquet ground.
The shooting season commences the first of November and
lasts to March 15th. Deer, wild turkeys, ducks and quail
afford fair sport. For the convenience of the sportsmen paths have
been cut throughout the island. The Club records show that over
2,200 quail have been shot during the season by members and guests.
The lawns are well kept and sown with seed imported from
England. They are embellished with beds of brightly blooming
flowers. Flowers bloom on Jekyl Island all winter long in great
variety; and the climbing vines, such as the Cherokee Rose, the
Wistaria, Trumpet Creeper and the Jessamine, in conjunction with the
many beautiful spring flowers, form a picture that is a delight to
the eyes. On the lawn, too, there are a variety of palmetto trees,
and clumps of Bayonet palmetto. Wild orange
trees, loaded with fruit and fragrant blossoms, are plentiful.
The native birds and those migrating in the spring are
of many varieties, and the sweet tones of the mocking bird are heard
day and night.
There is a competent resident physician on the island.
A small steamer stops at the island twice daily with the
The following extract from a letter received from a
recent visitor to the Jekyl Island Club, needs no comment:
“I thank you for my
two weeks at Jekyl Island. They were most enjoyable and how could
they be otherwise, surrounded as I was with charming, well-bred
people, with an interesting golf course, and men to play with whose
keen interest in the game and spirit of fun made eighteen holes a
“Then came a drive
through those woodland groves, along that wonderful beach, and,
after a good dinner, an evening before the wood fire in the smoking
room, listening to men who have seen and done things; men with war
experience and stories of hunting and yachting and traveling, here
and in other lands, interspersed with wit and humor, and, think of
it, no gossip. I, for once, did not miss the band and music and the
dancing which are found in so many of our Southern watering-places.
Those beautiful moonlight nights and the days when the air was
filled with a perfume of flowers and the mocking-birds were singing
in the trees, were much more to my taste, and when it came to
Sunday, the services in the little Chapel, were eminent bishops and
divines discoursed upon things which every thoughtful man is
thinking about, suited me.
“It is certainly a unique place. I know of no
resort of its kind in this country or any other country. And when
you see the tired men and women, who
come there, restored to health and
strength, you fell that there must be some combination of
circumstances that makes the place so attractive and restoring. The
real spirit of comradeship, which makes all, old and young, feel
that they belong to the family, stimulates one to give of their best
for the pleasure of others.”
It can readily be seen from the
foregoing that the Jekyl Island Club is what its projectors planned,
a Southern home, free from all the noise and convulsion of a
fashionable watering-place. The whole environment is one of
refinement, and the Club to-day is one of the most restful places in
Original Members—Jekyl Island Club
April 26, 1886
BARRON, John C.
CLARKE, Thos. Curtis
CUTTING Wm. Bayard
FINNEY, Newton S.
FURNESS, Watler Rogers
GRAY, Geo. E.
HIGGINS, A. Foster
HOPKINS, A. Lawrence
HOWLAND, Henry E.
HYDE, Henry B.
KETCHUM, Franklin M.
KING, Oliver Kane
LOOMIS, John Mason
MORGAN, J. Pierpont
NEWCOMB, H. Victor
PEARSALL, Thos. W.
STEWART, John A.
VANDERBILT, Wm. K.
Members Alive and Dead—Also Resigned
BALLATINE, J. Herbert
BRINTON, J. Percy
BUTLER, Prescott Hall
CLAFLIN, Arthur B.
DAVISON, Henry P.
FABYAN, Geo. F.
FIELD, Geo. S.
FORREST, Chas. R.
GOULD, Edwin, Jr.
GOULD, Geo. J.
GRANT, Hugh J.
HILL, James J.
JESUP, Morris K.
KENNEDY, John S.
KING, D.H., Jr.
KING, Henry W.
MACY, George H.
MOORE, John G.
PARRISH, James C.
PIERSON, J. Fred.
PROCTER, Wm. A.
PROCTER, W. Cooper
REAM, Norman B.
SMITH, J. Hopkins
TAYLOR, Wm. H.
VAN WICKLE, A.S.
Present Membership 1919
ALBRIGHT, J.J., Buffalo, N.Y., November
ALDRICH, Nelson W. (Est.), Providence, R.I., October 14,
ASTOR, Vincent, New York, N.Y., February 28, 1916.
BAKER, Frances E., Mrs., New York, N.Y., November 12, 1913.
BAKER, George F., New York, N.Y., April 18, 1901.
BEALE, William G., Chicago, Ill., March 20, 1918.
BILLINGS, C.K.G., New York, N.Y., November 21, 1904.
BLISS Cornelius, N. Jr., New York, N.Y., February 9, 1912.
BOURNE, Frederick G., New York, N.Y., April 8, 1901.
BREWSTER, George S., New York, N.Y., January 3, 1919.
BREWSTER, Robert S., New York, N.Y., March 2, 1912.
BROWN, M. Bayard, New York, N.Y., September 15, 1886.
CLARK, Stephen Carlton, New York, N.Y., May 4, 1916.
CRANE, Charles R., New York, N.Y., February 17, 1916.
CRANE, R.T., Jr., Chicago, Ill., March 2, 1912.
CROSBY, Franklin M., Minneapolis, Minn., March 7, 1914.
CROUCH, Herbert E., Buffalo, N.Y., January 26, 1915.
DeFOREST, Robert W., New York, N.Y., January 8, 1898.
DELANO, Eugene, New York, N.Y., January 17, 1910.
DICK, J. Henry, New York, N.Y., January 24, 1916.
DOWS Tracy, Rhinebeck, N.Y., November 23, 1915.
ELLSWORTH, James W., New York, N.Y., April 14, 1915.
ENO, Amos F. (Est.), New York, N.Y., June 30, 1904.
FERGUSON, Henry (Est.), Hartford, Conn., December 20, 1906.
FERGUSON, Walton, New York, N.Y., February 9, 1887.
FISHER, Henry J., New York, N.Y., March 6, 1917.
FISK, Pliny, Rye, N.Y., February 19, 1915.
GOELET, Robert Walton, New York, N.Y., December 11, 1901.
GOODYEAR, Frank H., Buffalo, June 2, 1916.
GOULD, Edwin, New York, N.Y., December 13, 1899.
GRANT, Hugh J., Mrs., New York, N.Y., April 11, 1912.
HAMMOND, John Henry, New York, N.Y., January 23, 1917.
HARDING, J. Horace, New York, N.Y., April 25, 1916.
HARKNESS, Edward S., New York, N.Y., March 20, 1911.
HAYES, Edmund, Buffalo, N.Y., November 27, 1886.
HIGGINS, Eugene, New York, N.Y., February 3, 1891.
HILL, James J., Mrs., St. Paul, Minn., December 14, 1916.
JAMES, Norman, Baltimore, Md., March 2, 1918.
JAMES, Walter B., New York, N.Y., February 19, 1917.
JARVIE, James N., New York, N.Y., January 31, 1910.
JENKINS, Helen Hartley, New York, N.Y., October 27, 1909.
JOHNSTONE, Kate A., Hamilton, Mass., February 2, 1907.
KENNEDY, John S., Mrs., New York, N.Y., January 17, 1910.
KRECH, Alvin W., New York, N.Y., November 6, 1916.
LANIER, Charles, New York, N.Y., March 8, 1889.
LEE, Elliot C., Boston, Mass., March 6, 1915.
MACY, George H. (Est.), New York, N.Y., March 5, 1902.
MAURICE, Charles S., Athens, Pa., April 26, 1886.
McCORMICK, Cyrus H., Chicago, Ill., June 10, 1891.
McCREA, W.S., Chicago, Ill., January 4, 1893.
MORGAN, J. Pierpont, New York, N.Y., June 23, 1913.
NICKERSON, Hoffman, New York, N.Y., February 9, 1912.
OGILVIE, Clinton, Mrs., New York, N.Y., May 9, 1917.
PALMER, Edgar, New York, N.Y., February 16, 1914.
PHOENIX, Phillips, New York, N.Y., January 30, 1905.
PORTER, H.K., Pittsburgh, Pa., April 22, 1891.
PRUYN, Robert C., Albany, N.Y., March 24, 1897.
PYNE, M. Taylor, New York, N.Y., March 6, 1915.
ROCHE, Francis George Burke, New York, N.Y., March 12, 1915.
ROCKEFELLER, William, New York, N.Y., April 26, 1886.
SCHLEY, Grant B. (Est.), New York, N.Y., September 18, 1903.
SCRYMSER, James A. (Est.), New York, N.Y., March 7, 1894.
SHATTUCK, Frederick C., Boston, Mass., February 26, 1912.
SLADE, George T., St. Paul, Minn. November 3, 1916.
SPENCER, Samuel, Mrs., Washington, D.C., February 23, 1909.
SPOOR, John A., Chicago, Ill., March 4, 1916.
STILLMAN, James (Est.), New York, N.Y., January 13, 1892.
STOTESBURY, E.T., Philadelphia, Pa., December 3, 1909.
VAIL, Henry H., New York, N.Y., March 20, 1897.
VAIL, Theodore N., Lyndonville, Vt., October 14, 1912.
WALTERS, Henry, Baltimore, Md., April 8, 1901.
WOODRUFF, Welland, D., St. Catherines, Ont., February 15,