Ramsey House, 1831, Springfield

springfield ga ramsey house photograph copyright brian brown vanishing south georgia usa 2009

Susan McDermott writes: My Mom is Carolyn Ramsey. She is 91 years and this is her home. I just wrote a 150 page paper interviewing Mom and the life style back in the “golden era” supplementing it with photo’s my grandfather Harry Ramsey and father Edward McGinness shot as early as the 1920’s through Late Mid Century. The lot 21 for this home was purchased by Reverend J.S. Olcott in 1830 for $25. He was one of the earliest Methodist Ministers in the Goshen Church that transformed into the Methodist Faith after the Revolutionary War. Olcott sold it in March 1835 with a court house record of a house built on the Lot. Unfortunately a Court House fire destroyed records from 1885-1918. A Washington DC 1921 fire destroyed many of the Census in 1880 and 1890 too. Senator H.N. Ramsey and Mayor of Springfield (1918-1924) purchased this home in January 1927. The unverified family word passed through the generations is Major General Slocum stayed here on the March to the Sea and his horses stayed in the Breezeway. I think Springfield was six houses back then. The original 1831 floor is still underneath the 1927 more refined floor. Carolyn’s Grandfather told her they were just too damaged from the War and horses. Dr. William H Wilson owned the home at the time of the Civil War and opened it up as a hospital per Otto Snooks from the below 1999 Article. Mom says there were two ovens built in the back yard during the war. The News Article “Springfield Bicentennial Celebration Essays” from the Effingham Herald on May 12, 1999 Acknowledges Mr. Mack C. Wilson II, as a post Civil War resident, who “re-built” this house. Adding amazing structural stability – many additional piers to the foundation. The house is solid with little signs of its age inside. He rebuilt the fireplaces, attached a kitchen, pantry, side porch. Upstairs was a loft with a ladder. Mack C. Wilson added a wall for the Master bedroom over the Parlor and an upstairs firebox in the chimney that he moved to the exterior and I believe he reused the same 1831 brick. The house was originally three rooms up and downstairs. Facing the house on the left side he added a wall dividing the downstairs room in two. The original fireplace then straddled between both rooms could not function, was removed and he built the center fireplace with 4 openings. I believe he replaced the siding too.The original 1831 walls are hand hewn Cypresswood panels one board thick. The studs are 4″ x 4″ with corner bracing. My Father removed the beaverboard in the 1980’s to find a plaster & lathe surprise underneath. After removing all that he photographed the amazing 1831 structure of this home. Tell-tale signs are left…the original door to the Parlor is now under the staircase and part of the wall. The two 1831 fireplaces originally were inside on each end the house… our ceilings shows exactly where!

The second major remodel came in 1921 by then owner E.G. Morgan.He completely rebuilt the front house exterior facade to Craftsman style seen in the square battened columns and Modillion like rafters and eaves. There is Neoclassical Revival inspired Portico and gable ends. He changed windows to single-pane double hung Craftsman style windows, added a wall upstairs dividing the room in two like downstairs and added a firebox for the front bedroom.

The era of Electricity and for sure the Plumbing was My Great Grandfather’s project during the early 1930’s…This is a good place to stop. I would like to find Union Soldiers letters that may substantiate Major General Slocum’s stopping point in Springfield.

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Filed under --EFFINGHAM COUNTY GA--, Springfield GA

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