Skidaway Audubon News: Finding a Sense of Place on Skidaway

By Mal Welch
Skidaway Audubon

What brought you to The Landings? Most people say it’s proximity to Savannah for culture, history, and food, or it’s the six golf courses or water access, depending on whether you’re a golfer or boater. Or maybe it’s the year-round outdoor living, especially if you’ve left behind dreary winters and snow shovels.

So now, uprooted from where you were – and 25 percent of Landings residents are new to Skidaway in the past two years – you are here in Coastal Georgia, on an interior barrier island with a maritime forest, a Pleistocene geology, surrounded by salt marsh, on former hunting grounds of Timucua Indians and once home to giant sloths and other megafauna which became extinct five-to-10 thousand years ago.

Your new home has a rich history that will give you an illuminating and fulfilling sense of place. To help residents – new and old – discover the island’s curious past, Sustainable Skidaway, a project of Skidaway Audubon, has developed the perfect tools to uncover the island’s secrets.

Detailed signage has been placed at historic sites in the community. Visit two tabby gravesites, a freedman school site, and monastery site, and you will have spanned 200 years of history, from pre-colonial to post-Civil War. Look for the signs on Hoptree in Midpoint, near the gazebo in Oakridge, and on Priest’s Landing in Marshwood.

In addition, a richly illustrated Natural & Historic Sites Map of Skidaway Island details many more points of interest on Skidaway and its environs. It includes historic highlights beginning with the island’s formation and ending with the first house built at The Landings. Folded maps are available at The Landings Association office (600 Landings Way South) for a $10 donation to Skidaway Audubon. A small number of unfolded, flat maps, suitable for framing, are available for $10 as well, by contacting

History buffs looking to go deeper can access the out-of-print-book, “A Short History of Skidaway Island,” digitized by the University of Georgia Academic Press, by visiting Funding for the signage, maps and the book digitization came from generous Landlovers grants.

The Sustainable Skidaway task force focuses on maintaining The Landings’ certification as a Sustainable Community as designated by Audubon International. First achieved in 2018, certification involves meeting  exacting criteria in 15 different areas. Recertification is required every three years. To learn more, visit


This article was originally published by The Landings Association on their website.

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