Franklinia Restaurant, Circa 1945, Ludowici

Franklinia Restaurant Ludowici GA Long County US Highway 84 Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2014

A postcard dating to 1945 would suggest this local landmark was likely built around the end of World War II. At that time, the catch phrase for the business was “Court of the Lost Flower”, for the mysterious Franklinia tree (Franklinia alatamaha) first collected by John Bartram near Fort Barrington along the Altamaha River in 1765 and named for Benjamin Franklin. Though the species survives in cultivation, it was thought to be extinct in the wild by the early 1800s. The motel is still standing to the left of this structure, but is now used as apartments.

Franklinia Restaurant Ludowici GA Long County US Highway 84 Roadside Diner Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2014

In its heyday, it was a busy roadside stopover on U. S. Highway 84.

Ludowici GA Postcard Franklinia Motel and Restaurant 1960s Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2014

This postcard, from the early 1960s, shows that the Ludowici Tile used as awning on the restaurant today was not present in the structure’s early days. The motel did boast a Ludowici tile roof, which has since been replaced. It was owned by Mr. & Mrs. Hugh Gordon at the time of this image.



Filed under --LONG COUNTY GA--, Ludowici GA

4 responses to “Franklinia Restaurant, Circa 1945, Ludowici

  1. Jonell

    Mrs Ernestine Smiley & Josephine Branch owned and operated this Motel and Restaurant in the 50’s. Carolee was the cook, does anyone remember her last name?

  2. Allan Cason

    In the 60’s for teens, this was our CHEERS. Evenings when we had no particular plans, we would always find friends there. (easily, as everyone knew each other) Great cheeseburgers and hot homemade fries. Mrs. Gordon fed us well and Mr.Gordon kept us in line. Sundays was seafood or fried chicken with the family after church. The Gordons were fine people, served delicious food and treated thier guest like family. My thanks to them for many good memories.

  3. Wendell Theus

    Hi Brian, Great photo narrative. In its heydays of the 1960’s, this was a very busy restaurant due to hwy. 301 being one of the major tourist routes from northern states residents traveling to Florida even though Disney World wasn’t even thought of then. It had quite a great reputation for fast, friendly service and great food (southern style). My memories are of the great shrimp & fish dinners as well as great hamburgers. The Gordon family really knew how to treat folks right & feed them well. It is a sad story that recent attempts to open & run this Ludowici institution have so far failed. Maybe the right people will get it yet & restore the restaurant to it’s former status. Thanks—- Wendell

  4. Vickie Black

    Have you checked out the buildings in Perkins, GA? Hawes grocery store is a very old store operated by Hawes family for many years but I believe it is closed now. There is also a train depot in the little community where the folks get together on Sat. evenings for country singing and guitar playing. Everyone brings their lawn chairs and their is a vendor with hot dogs for sell.

    On Wed, May 21, 2014 at 12:37 PM, Vanishing South Georgia Photographs by

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