Whenever you travel down Ebenezer Creek in a kayak or boat, you witness the natural beauty of the strong cypress that stand tall in the water, and beyond the bank you can see the pine trees that sway in the cool Georgia breeze. These trees are a major part of the history of the coastal lowlands.

After the Salzburgers left Old Ebenezer in 1736, General James Oglethorpe sent forty indentured German servants to set up a saw mill on the site instead. This saw mill is believed to be the first one in Georgia. Its establishment was the first breath of an industry that would provide for many families in Georgia, especially in Effingham County. The location for the site of Old Ebenezer is not exactly known, but in 1847 William Bacon Steven described its location as “in the forks of Little Ebenezer and Ebenezer Creeks”. Today, visitors, who travel down Log Landing Road from GA Highway 21, can still see the frame of an old shed that contains some wooden material. That dilapidated shed is the only remains of this old saw mills presence.


Saw mills were very important to early settlers. At New Ebenezer, the Salzburgers installed a mill with two saws that could produce up to one thousand boards per day. The lumber that was processed through these mills was then sent down Ebenezer Creek to the Savannah River where it would be shipped to different ports along the coast.

Many bridges were built and used to transport timber out of and through the coastal lowlands. You can see old train trestles and logging road bridges throughout Ebenezer Creek and the surrounding swamp. Many of these bridges were made from roughhewn cypress piers and the supports are still standing today.

These bridges found along Ebenezer Creek were very important. During Reconstruction, many people in the South were rebuilding their homes and farms destroyed during the Civil War. Timber harvesting became a vital industry. The timber that was cut and then transported along these logging bridges was used for building and repairing everything from , carts, and hay rakes, to plantation homes. Effingham County used the abundance of forests in this area to their advantage to stabilize the local economy after the depression in the South caused by the war. Ebenezer Creek was greatly important at this time because it allowed the harvested timber to be processed by locals and then shipped to various locations throughout the country and world.

Read More about Old and New Ebenezer