One of Savannah ’s more unique museums is the quirky Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum (41 MLK Jr. Blvd., 912/232-1511, http://shipsofthesea.org , Tues.–Sun. 10 a.m.–5 p.m., $8 adults, $6 students). The stunning Greek Revival building in which it resides is known as the Scarbrough House because it was initially built in 1819 by the great William Jay for local shipping merchant William Scarbrough, owner of the SS Savannah, the first steamship to cross the Atlantic. After the Scarbroughs sold the property, it became the West Broad School for African Americans from Reconstruction through integration.
One of the Historic Savannah Foundation’s key restoration projects in the 1970s, the museum recently got another major facelift in 1998, including a roof based on the original Jay design and a delightful enlargement of the mansion’s garden out back.
Inside, children, maritime buffs, and crafts connoisseurs can find intricate and detailed scale models of various historic vessels, such as Oglethorpe’s Anne, the SS Savannah, and the NS Savannah, the world’s first nuclear-powered surface vessel. There’s even a model of the Titanic.