Calhoun Square, located on Abercorn Street, was laid out in 1851. It is the only Square in Savannah with all of its original buildings still around. Many of the homes built around Calhoun Square were built in the Greek Revival style. Calhoun Square has many notable buildings on it including the Massie School. Throughout its history Calhoun Square has served many purposes including a burial ground for slaves.
Calhoun Square was named for John C. Calhoun, a South Carolina statesman who, among other titles, served as Vice President John Quincy Adams and Andrew Jackson.
The Massie School
Back in 1865, the Massie School opened up in Savannah. It was the first public school in Savannah. Completed in 1856, the Massie School was designed by architect John Morris. The school is named for Peter Massie, who left $5,000 for the building of a school in Savannah which would help to educate the children of poor parents here in Savannah.
The Massie School has an interesting history and continues to influence the education system here in Savannah. Learn more about the Massie School.
The Haunted House at 432 Abercorn
432 Abercorn, considered by many to be one of the most haunted homes in Savannah, is steeped in legend and conjecture. This house, built in the Greek Revival style, was built back in 1868 for Benjamin T. Wilson, a veteran of the American Civil War.
Many stories surround the history of this grand house at 432 Abercorn. From murders, suicides, and disappearances. There seems to be a strange energy that comes from the walls of this dilapidated structure. Why is it that this building, a grand house in a prime location, still stands without inhabitants. Well, read more about the stories from the House at 432 Abercorn here.
The Slave Burial Grounds
Even though nobody here in Savannah likes talking about it, Savannah played a big part in the slave trade in the American South. Most of the times, slaves were not treated as equals in life...and in death. Some slaves were given a proper burial, but many were not. At one time Calhoun Square was on the outskirts of Savannah, beyond the city limits. It just soo happens that many of the slaves who died in Savannah during the 18th century were buried in Calhoun Square.
The burials that took place in Calhoun Square were done hastily and without coffins. So, when you visit Calhoun Square, tread respectfully. You are walking on the largest un-exhumed slave graveyard in Savannah. Estimates put as many as 1000 bodies underneath Calhoun Square.