Inside the Archives

Join the City of Savannah Municipal Archives' staff as we share treasures from the archival collections and interesting tidbits of local Savannah history.

Feb 14

Archival Love

Posted on February 14, 2024 at 9:48 AM by Luciana Spracher

For Valentine’s Day, we wanted to send a little "archival love" out to everyone. Each member of the Archives team has selected a favorite image (a hard task among our collections) to share with you today. Enjoy and have a great day!

Happiness is Having a Friend, circa 1970s-1980s

Unidentified children on a Savannah stoop, circa 1970s-1980s

Boy’s sweatshirt reads “Happiness is Having a Friend”

W. W. Law photograph collection, Item 1121-100_1251

(Selected by Luciana Spracher, Municipal Archives Director)


Air Ship Ascension, 1909

Air Ship Ascension, November 1, 1909

Palumbo collection of Savannah-area materials, Item 1121-070_0411

Learn about the Air Ship Stroebel’s visit to Daffin Park in 1909 in the Noteworthy Savannah mini-exhibit online

(Selected by Kelly Zacovic, Senior Archivist)

Girls with baskets, no date

Unidentified girls balancing baskets on their heads in a Savannah street, no date

Mr. and Mrs. Robert P. Minis collection of glass plate negatives, Item 1121-071_018

(Selected by Megan Kerkhoff, Records Management Program Coordinator)

Feb 01

Children in the Archives: Connecting Generations

Posted on February 1, 2024 at 2:44 PM by Luciana Spracher

As we continue to explore the theme of Children in the Archives, we’d like to reflect on the power of archives to bring people together and connect. In 2022, the City mounted the large-scale outdoor photography installation “Window to Savannah’s History” on the old Water Works Pump House building at the corner of Gwinnett Street and Stiles Avenue. The installation features images from the Municipal Archives’ collections, selected with assistance from community members from Savannah’s westside neighborhoods. The featured portraits represent both residents of Savannah’s westside, as well as Savannah as a whole. Many of those displayed were collected during neighborhood documentation projects aimed at preserving the unique stories of Savannah’s diverse neighborhoods and communities.

Rose Marie Manigault, circa 1940-1941Rose Marie Manigault (now Harris), around the age of 4-5 years old, shopping on Broughton Street with her mother, Mrs. Ernestine E. Manigault, circa 1940-1941. Westside Documentation Project, Item 6112-003_Rose Harris.

Since the installation went up, it has been exciting to hear how these portraits have impacted people. In a 2022 SGTV piece, Carolyn Slay talked about what it meant to see her mother and aunt in one of the images. Perhaps the most touching story, and the kind that makes it all worth it for an archivist, came from Rose Marie Manigault Harris, the subject of one of the portraits. Mrs. Harris’ family used the portrait as an opportunity to have a family reunion, bringing together multiple generations. Harris family members came from Maine, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, and Louisiana to take a family photo onsite at the Water Works in front of Rose’s portrait. Then, 80 years after the original image was taken on Broughton Street, her granddaughter Jillian Rose and great-granddaughter Raegen Rose recreated it, each taking a turn walking with a purse down Broughton Street.

Harris familyRose Marie Manigault Harris and family, 2023. Photographs courtesy of Rose Harris.

Harris and granddaughtersRose Harris with granddaughters, 2023.

Jillian Rose Jillian Rose, 2023.

Raegen RoseRaegen Rose, 2023.

To learn more about the Municipal Archives and our collections, visit

Jan 02

Babies in the Archives

Posted on January 2, 2024 at 3:57 PM by Luciana Spracher

Throughout the 2024 year, join the Municipal Archives as we explore the theme of Children in the Archives. Each month, we will share some of our favorite images from the collections that feature children and youth in the Savannah community, from children at play to children at work, and much more. This month, we start with a few photographs of Savannah babies that caught our eyes and captured our hearts. 

Unidentified infant sitting in highchair, undated.

Unidentified infant sitting in a highchair with a woman holding their hand for support, undated. White Bluff Community Collection (1121-064.05), Item #Hall_0074, donated by Emma Hall. City of Savannah Municipal Archives

Walter C. Scott, circa 1882.

Walter C. Scott, circa 1882. W. W. Law Photograph Collection, Item 1121-100_1727. City of Savannah Municipal Archives.

Child participating in the City’s Summer Lunch Program, 1994.

Child participating in the City’s Summer Lunch Program, 1994. Public Information Office Photograph Collection, Item #0123-045_02-45-006. City of Savannah Municipal Archives.