On the north end of Jekyll Island, Georgia, you will find one of only two remaining Georgia pre-revolutionary structures made of tabby. Originally the house was the residence of Major William Horton, one of General James Oglethorpe's most trusted military aides.
Major Horton was the first English resident of Jekyll Island. His two story home was built on the north end of Jekyll Island along with a barn. The residents of neighboring Saint Simons Island depended on crops in his fields. Major Horton cut a road across the north end of Jekyll from his home to the beach which is to this day named Horton Road.
A Georgia historical marker, on the subject of "Tabby," is positioned at the Horton House site explaining the building material used in the original homes. Used in Georgia during the Military and Plantation Eras, tabby was used as a building material for walls, floors and roofs. Its composition was equal parts of sand, lime, oyster shell and water missed into a mortar mix and then poured into forms.
According to this historical marker, the word tabby is African in origin, with an Arabic background, and means "a wall made of earth or masonry." Originally, the Spanish brought this building style to America.
Part of the original site remains looking over to the Jekyll Island Bridge.
For more information about the Jekyll Island experience, visit http://www.jekyllisland.com.
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