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Feb 23, 2018
"Darien Shrimp Boat Fleet" in black and white was photographed at Darien, Georgia in January 2018.
I love photographing in Darien, Georgia. Darien is a historic town about fifty miles south of Savannah, Georgia making it about the midway point in Coastal Georgia. There is a town called Midway, Georgia also, however it is only about twenty-five miles south of Savannah, Georgia (about midway from Savannah to Darien).
From England's earliest outpost in Georgia at Fort King George to what it is now, a shrimping community, Darien has a rich history. Before the Civil War, Darien was a huge exporter of rice and cotton. The civil war however caused a turning point and both the economic depression in the south and the lack of slave labor after the civil war doomed the plantation way of life and changed the south for the good. After the civil war, Darien became a large exporter of timber. So much so that they were one of the largest exporting ports on the east coast of the United States. However, due to poor management of this resource, they actually ran out of timber to export in the early 1900s. After the timber ran out, the town became an exporter of oysters and shrimp. Today, it is still primarily a historic shrimping town with a huge fleet of beautiful shrimp boats along the waterfront and some very good seafood restaurants if you like fresh Georgia wild shrimp.
"Fort King George"
The reconstructed Fort King George is definitely worth a visit. Here you'll learn about one of Georgia's earliest outposts at a time when England and Spain where struggling to establish footholds in the new continent.
Two rice plantations just south of Darien, Georgia are also worth visiting. The Hofwyl-Broadfield Plantation is state owned and maintained. The buidlings there have been beautifully preserved. They also have a museum which depicts the harsh life and plight of the African American slaves, a life which was even harsher than on the cotton plantations. Most of us can't imagine what a slave's life was like in the 1800s. Here, you can begin to imagine.
The Butler Plantation is just off Hwy 17 south of Darien, Georgia. It was also a rice plantation and is now owned by the Nature Conservancy.
A trip to Darien, Georgia is also a good time to stop for some fresh wild Coastal Georgia seafood, especially the shrimp. I have tried Skipper's Seafood Restaurant. It is very good and modestly priced. I've also heard rave reviews for B&J's Steak and Seafood as well as Mudcat Charlie's.
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