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Hospitality & Tourism

Aug. 3 - Historic Button Gwinnett House on St. Catherines Island Gets a Facelift

Brunswick Business Journal Staff Report

August 3, 2016 - Charlie Angell, The House Doctor was chosen to make repairs on the interior and exterior of the historic Button Gwinnett House built on the Georgia barrier island, St. Catherines Island.  The home, facing west overlooking Walburg Creek is believed to have been lived in by Button Gwinnett, one of Georgia’s three signers of the Declaration of Independence. Some debate exists on the exact date the Gwinnett House was built, but it is believed the core of the tabby structure is at least 200 years old, and it is known that Button Gwinnett lived on the island from 1774 until his death in 1777.

The modern Gwinnett House was enlarged in 1928-29 and renovated in 1971, and is thought to enclose the original Gwinnett structure, represented by tabby and mortise and tenon construction. Tabby is a type of concrete made by burning oyster shells to create lime, then mixing it with water, sand, ash and broken oyster shells. This material was used primarily in coastal South Carolina and Georgia.

Charlie Angell, The House Doctor and crew is making exterior repairs. The repairs include roofing, millwork, noninvasive repairing of cracks on the stucco covering the tabby and preventative maintenance painting and waterproofing systems on the Gwinnett House. Charlie Angell, known for restorative work on historic homes, churches and commercial businesses throughout Savannah and the region says, “Proper preventative maintenance on the exterior and interior of historic structures such as the Button Gwinnet House increases their longevity and saves a lot of money.” All equipment and materials will be transported by boat to the island and the project is expected to be completed this summer.

Charlie Angell, The House Doctor is one of Savannah’s and the surrounding area’s most experienced historic restoration contractors, specializing in restoration, rehabilitation, and repair of private homes and landmark commercial and municipal buildings. Charlie Angell has over thirty years of experience as a general contractor and has won multiple awards for major restorations of landmark structures in Savannah’s Historic District. (www.housedoctorsavannah.com)

St. Catherines Island is privately owned by the nonprofit St. Catherines Island Foundation, which aims to promote the conservation of natural resources, survival of endangered species, and preservation of historic sites, in addition to expanding human knowledge in the fields of archaeology, botany, ecology, natural history, zoology, and other scientific and educational disciplines. The island is closed to the general public because of the small staff and the sensitive nature of the ongoing scientific work on the island. (www.stcatherinesisland.org)

Charlie Angell, The House Doctor is one of Savannah’s and the surrounding area’s historic restoration contractors, specializing in restoration, rehabilitation, and repair of private homes and landmark commercial and municipal buildings. The firm has won multiple awards for major restorations of landmark structures in Savannah’s Historic District.

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