In the three short years between his arrival from England in 1817 to his departure for Charleston in 1820, William Jay changed the face of Savannah. In a time when many Americans sought to distance themselves from European influence and develop a national character of their own, a few, including Richard Richardson, Alexander Telfair, William Scarbrough, and Archibald Stobo Bulloch, still sought the classical elegance of the popular English Regency style. Jay delivered the luxurious showplaces they desired and also elevated Savannah’s civic life with a new theater, a design for the Savannah Branch of the Second Bank of the United States, and a new Customs House.
Explore Jay’s life, travels, and most importantly his designs as we celebrate 200 years of William Jay architecture in Savannah.
Opening LectureArchitectural historian Robin Williams examines William Jay’s Savannah buildings and how they changed the landscape of our city.
This exhibition is organized by Telfair Museums and curated by Shannon Browning-Mullis, Curator of History and Decorative Arts.