It seems appropriate that my 4,000th posting on this website would focus on a place like Hazel’s Cafe because it’s just the sort of place with the sort of history I’m always searching for. Located on St. Simons Island, in the historic African-American community of South End, Hazel’s was owned by Hazel and Thomas Floyd. Thomas, a veteran of World War II, settled here with his wife shortly after World War II and soon thereafter they started this business, which would be a staple of St. Simons life until it closed in 1978. With new homes and condos dotting the island today, it’s a nice step back to a time when St. Simons, like all of the Georgia coast, was anchored by small but thriving communities who looked to family and friends as well as the rich coastal waters surrounding them for sustenance and survival. Hazel was known to go crabbing in season and bring back her catch for the night’s special of deviled crab. I’m sure they were legendary dishes in their time. Melissa Lee has an excellent tribute to this St. Simons icon here:
Category Archives: St. Simons Island GA
Glynn County maintains an excellent fishing pier, floating dock, and public park at Gascoigne Bluff on St. Simons Island. It’s a great place to unwind from the crowds of the beach and take in a bit of the real coastal magic. There is a covered picnic shelter with tables set beside a massive grove of old-growth oaks, and best of all, it’s free.
It’s not a stretch to say that much of Georgia’s early history began right here on Gascoigne Bluff, along the grass-choked tidal marshes of the Frederica River. It was long the home of a large Native American settlement, as well as a Fransican monastery called San Buenaventura, then the first naval base in Georgia, and the list goes on. Timbers removed from the Live Oak forest here were used in the building of the USS Constitution, better known as “Old Ironsides”.
The bluff was named for Captain James Gascoigne, who brought the first British settlers to the Georgia colony aboard the HMS Hawk.
Visit some favorite sites on St. Simons and learn more about these cabins:
See more photos and history at Vanishing Coastal Georgia:
For more photos of the barracks, please see Vanishing Coastal Georgia:
Founded in 1808, Christ Church did not build a permanent house of worship until 1820, due largely to economic troubles stemming from the War of 1812. The first structure stood until the Civil War, when Union troops damaged it so badly that members were forced to meet in their homes until the present structure was built in 1884.