William Scarbrough

William Scarbrough (HM31Y)

Location: Savannah, GA 31401 Chatham County
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Country: United States of America
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N 32° 4.512', W 81° 5.401'

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Promoter of the First Transatlantic Steamship

William Scarbrough (1776-1838) was the moving force among the enterprising business men of Savannah who in 1819 sent the first steamship across the Atlantic Ocean. The corporate charter which Scarbrough and his associates obtained from the Georgia Legislature in 1818 recited that "they have formed themselves into an association, under the style and name of the Savannah Steam Ship Company, to attach, either as auxiliary or principal, the propulsion of steam to sea vessels, for the purpose of navigating the Atlantic and other oceans..."

The side-wheel steamship "Savannah," a vessel of 350 tons, was built in the North under specifications of Scarbrough and his business associates. She steamed from Savannah May 22, 1819, on her epoch-making voyage to Europe, reaching Liverpool 27 days later.

William Scarbrough was the son of a wealthy planter of the Beaufort District, S.C. Educated in Europe, he moved to Savannah about 1798 and soon attained a leading place in the life of the community, becoming one of Savannah's so-called "Merchant Princes" of the era. The handsome Scarbrough residence, which still stands on West Broad Street, was a center of the social life of the city. There William Scarbrough and his vibrant wife, Julia Bernard Scarbrough (1786-1851), entertained President James Monroe as a house guest in 1819.
HM NumberHM31Y
Series This marker is part of the Georgia: Georgia Historical Society/Commission series
Marker Number025-44
Year Placed1957
Placed ByGeorgia Historical Commission
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, September 18th, 2014 at 10:30pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)17S E 491504 N 3548774
Decimal Degrees32.07520000, -81.09001667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 32° 4.512', W 81° 5.401'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds32° 4' 30.72" N, 81° 5' 24.06" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)478, 912
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 200 Abercorn St, Savannah GA 31401, US
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