At the intersection of Abercorn and Wayne Streets in Savannah, Georgia, you’ll find historic Taylor Square. Although the square’s name is new, its architecture remains much the same as it always was.

Laid out in 1851, Taylor Square exemplifies what the city once looked like. Of the 23 squares in the city, it’s the only square in Savannah where all the historic buildings still remain.

In this beautiful neighborhood, it’s easy to imagine what it felt like to stroll through Savannah hundreds of years ago, passing by cathedrals, gardens, and homes.

History of Taylor Square: Savannah’s “New” Square

In 1851, this prominent Savannah square was one of the last 3 to be incorporated into the original city plan. Taylor Square’s original name, Calhoun Square, honored John C. Calhoun, a controversial US Vice President who died in 1850.

Image: a map of Savannah's original squares, including Calhoun Square (now Taylor)
An antebellum map of Savannah’s squares

By the late 1800s, the square evolved into its current form. Beautiful private residences were erected in the 1850s and 1860s, along with the new Massie schoolhouse and a monumental Methodist church. In the years since, the square has remained a quiet residential neighborhood in Savannah’s Historic District.

Image: a photograph of the brick walkway and live oak trees in Savannah's Taylor Square
An image of Taylor Square today

Although Calhoun Square didn’t change much over time, the times have certainly changed. In November 2022, the “Calhoun” name was permanently removed due to John C. Calhoun’s position on slavery.

A New Name for An Old Square

In 2023, Savannah locals voted on a new name: Taylor Square. The new name honors Susie King Taylor, a prominent local who was the first African American nurse to serve in the Civil War. 

Born to enslaved parents in 1848 Savannah, Taylor was secretly taught to read as a child. Later, she escaped enslavement to become a Union Army nurse. After the war, she organized a school to teach emancipated children and adults.

Locals celebrated the square’s name change in February, 2024. Image source: GPB

Susie King Taylor is now the first woman and the first person of color whose name adorns a Savannah square. The new signage for the square was unveiled in February of 2024, ushering in a new era for Taylor Square. 

Things to Do in Taylor Square in Savannah

Taylor Square is one of the best-preserved areas in Georgia’s oldest city. Here are some must-see attractions and stops in the area.

1. The Park at Taylor Square

Image: a photograph of a man on a bicycle in Taylor Square, Savannah.
Calhoun Square (now Taylor Square) photographed by the Savannah Morning News

Like all of Savannah’s famous squares, Taylor Square is anchored by a lush green space. You’ll see live oaks draped with Spanish moss, plenty of open green space, and iconic park benches. Since it’s a residential area, this park makes for a nice, peaceful picnic spot or a place to stroll away from the crowds.

2. Massie Heritage Center

Image: A historic photo of the Massie School circa 1856.
Built in 1856, The Massie School (now the Massie Heritage Center) looks almost the same all these years later.

Massie Heritage Center is located on the southern side of the square. Once the first public school in the state of Georgia, this gorgeous 1856 schoolhouse is now a local history museum. Be sure to check out the huge 3D model of the Historic District to get your bearings on the city.

3. Wesley Monumental United Methodist Church

Image: a photograph of the Wesley Monumental Church in Savannah, Georgia on Taylor Square
The Wesley Monumental Church

On the western end of the square is Wesley Monumental United Methodist Church, which broke ground in 1875. This neo-gothic architectural gem features two soaring spires, a massive sanctuary, and original stained-glass windows.

4. Taylor Square Ghost Tours

Image: a photograph of a nighttime haunted walking tour in Taylor Square.
A ghost tour in the square formerly known as Calhoun Square. Credit:

Rumor has it that Calhoun Square (now Taylor Square) was once a burial ground, making it a popular pit stop for paranormal believers who credit it as one of Savannah’s most haunted spots.

5. Forsyth Park

Image: a photograph of the famous fountain at Forsyth Park

Taylor Square is only 2 blocks away from Forsyth Park, Savannah’s largest public greenspace. This majestic 30-acre park features a famous fountain, winding paths, and shady spots to relax.

6. Congregation Mickve Israel

Image: A photograph of of Congregation Mickve Israel
A view of Congregation Mickve Israel

When visiting Taylor Square, you’ll see a towering gothic spire peeking above the trees. This is Congregation Mickve Israel–named by Condé Nast Traveler as one of the most beautiful synagogues in the world. If you want to check out the inside and explore their museum, sign up for a guided tour Monday-Friday. They also host the Shalom Y’all Food Festival each autumn, drawing in over 10,000 visitors.

Dining and Shopping in Taylor Square

Whether you’re looking for some retail therapy or a quick meal, Taylor Square is in the heart of it all in the Savannah Historic District. Check out these great options near the square.

  • Clary’s Café
    A classic greasy spoon restaurant near Jones St. with the best breakfast in Savannah, according to USA Today.
  • Books on Bay
    Cozy vintage bookshop with thousands of books ranging from the 1600’s to the late 1900s.
  • Collins Quarter at Forsyth Park
    A top-rated café and bakery with incredible breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
  • Yaupon Teahouse + Apothecary
    Tea retailer featuring organic brews and herbal teas and accessories to take home.
  • Jones & Bull for the Home
    Legendary antique shop with a curated collection of vintage and antique home decor and furniture, plus soaps, local products, and more.
  • Custard Boutique
    Indie shop with a unique and eco-friendly clothes, accessories, and gifts.

More things to do in Savannah’s Historic District

Plan Your Visit to the Square

At the north end of the square is The House on Taylor Square.

It’s a recently renovated 1850s residence converted into a boutique inn with 4 one-of-a-kind guest suites:

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