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Customs House

savannah customs house

United States Custom House

The U.S. Custom House in Savannah was built in 1852 and is Georgia’s oldest federal building. The site of the building was important from the beginning of Savannah history. A one-story frame house, built in 1733, was located on the site and was rented by James Oglethorpe, founder of the colony, on his return visits to Savannah. At the rear of the lot facing Bull Street, stood the Tabernacle and Court House. This building was described as “being one handsome room with a panache on three sides” and served as the colony’s first house of worship. It was on this site that John Wesley, founder of the Methodist church, preached his first sermon on American soil. The U.S. Custom House in Savannah is a Greek Revival structure which is rectangular in form with a raised basement and two floors above. The building is a granite bearing wall structure whose exterior surface is smooth, dressed grey granite from Quincy, Massachusetts.

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