At the intersection of Bull and Macon Streets, lies Madison Square, aptly named after the fourth President of the United States, James Madison. Designed in 1837, the center of the square boasts a monument in honor of Sergeant William Jasper, a brave soldier who fell in the Siege of Savannah in 1779. The southern line of the British defense during the battle of 1779 is commemorated here by a granite marker, as well as cannons from the old Savannah armory.
What is there to see in Madison Square?
A great selection of restaurants, shops, and historically significant architecture can be found in and around Madison Square; the Green-Meldrim House, St. John’s Episcopal Church, and the Sorrel-Weed House just to name a few.
Sgt. William Jasper Statue
Revolutionary War hero, Sergeant William Jasper, is honored by a large monument in the middle of Madison square. During the Siege of Savannah in 1779, the Sergeant was fatally wounded, but his good deeds to the city of Savannah did not go unnoticed.
The Green-Meldrim House is one of Savannah’s most significant historic homes. Designed by John Norris for one Mr. Charles Green in 1853, its Gothic Revival architecture stands out from the crowd. The cast iron portico, large covered porch, and ornate ironwork are an architecture lover’s dream!
The story goes that Mr. Green heard that General Sherman was coming, rode his horse out to meet him, and offered his home for the General’s use as residence and headquarters in order to save it (and all of Savannah) from eminent destruction.
St. John’s Episcopal Church
Organized in 1840, St. John’s Episcopal Church stands across from Madison Square’s western corner. The final structure was completed in 1853 and designed by Calvin Otis. The “Parish House”, not the office and chapel annex, is located in the Green-Meldrim Mansion.
The Sorrel-Weed House is located on Madison Square’s northwest corner. Built in 1841, also in the Greek-Revival Style, it is regarded by many as one of Savannah’s most ominously striking mansions.
Madison Square today
With the Savannah College of Art and Design’s main campus just across the street from Madison Square, you are sure to find college students sitting in the park waiting to be inspired.
The grand Masonic Temple building across from the square, hosts the Gryphon Tea Room, open daily for lunch and high tea, and is designed after a Victorian-era pharmacy.
Savannah’s oldest independent bookstore, E. Shaver Books and Maps, is a stone’s throw away from the square as well. A must-see for any history lover as they have a large regional history section.