After the Civil War, Tybee began to grow as a resort area for local Savannah residents who wanted to escape the heat of downtown for the cooling breezes of Tybee Island. The island had very few year-round residents before the 1870s. By the 1890s, there were over 400 beach cottages and other buildings built for the “summer” residents.
In 1885 plans were made for Fort Screven to be built on the north end of Tybee to provide a more modern system of seacoast defenses. Six poured concrete, low profile gun batteries and a minefield were ordered for Tybee along with hundreds of other military buildings. Gun batteries such as Battery Garland would be named to honor America’s integral part of America’s Coastal Defense system. Troops would train and stand guard on Tybee throughout the Spanish American War, World War I and World II. In 1947, the fort was closed and sold to the Town of Savannah Beach and tourism returned as a major part of Tybee’s history.
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Tybee Island Lighthouse and Museum
30 Meddin Ave