Mercer Williams House Museum

#11 in Best Things To Do in Savannah
Mercer Williams House Museum picture
Marje Cannon/Getty Images

Key Info

429 Bull St.

Price & Hours

$12.50 for adults; $8 for students
Mon-Sat 10:30 a.m.-4:10 p.m. | Sun noon-4 p.m.

Details

Historic Homes/Mansions, Museums, Sightseeing Type
Less than 1 hour Time to Spend
3.5

scorecard

  • 3.0Value
  • 3.0Facilities
  • 5.0Atmosphere

According to some recent visitors, a stop at the Mercer-Williams House is a must when in Savannah. While it was once home to lyricist Johnny Mercer, this house is much more famous for its other resident, Jim Williams, a noted Savannah antiques dealer and the central character in John Berendt's best-selling book "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil." In fact, Williams is the only person in Georgia to have ever been tried four times for the same crime: the murder of Danny Hansford, which allegedly took place in this very house. While the upstairs is off-limits, you're invited to explore the ground floor, which is ornately decorated with 18th- and 19th-century furnishings, Chinese porcelain and portraits dating back to the 1700s. 

Though most recent visitors were pleased with their tour of the Mercer-Williams House, reviewers warned that fans of the book and film may be disappointed to learn that guides do not talk about the book or the alleged murder that took place here (ironically, you'll find book merchandise and memorabilia in the gift shop). Some were also a bit dissatisfied with the extent of the tour (remember: you'll only see the first floor), especially for the cost of admission. But still, most travelers said that if you're going to tour just one historic house in Savannah, the Mercer-Williams home should be it. 

The Mercer Williams House Museum sits two blocks north of Forsyth Park's Gaston Street entrance in the Historic District. It's open to visitors Monday through Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 4:10 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 4 p.m. Tickets (which can be purchased online) are $12.50 for adults and $8 for students. Hours of operation vary in the wintertime, so it's best to call ahead at to ensure your reservation. For more information, check out the official website.

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#1 Forsyth Park

Go to this 30-acre park in the heart of Savannah's Historic District to relax after a long day of sightseeing. Keep your camera ready, though, as there is plenty to see here as well. Stroll past the stunning white-stone Forsyth Fountain, memorials dedicated to the Confederacy and the Spanish-American War, the Fragrant Garden for the visually impaired and the 300-year-old Candler Oak tree. From the park, you can see several historic sites within walking distance, including Hodgson Hall (home to the Georgia Historical Society) and the old Poor House and Hospital, which was used to treat wounded soldiers during the Civil War.

Recent visitors noted the park's urban cosmopolitan vibe, with locals and tourists alike picnicking, dog walking and even painting. They also say that street parking nearby the park is free on Sundays.

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