Laid out along Montgomery Street in 1790 at the western end of town, Franklin Square and Franklin Ward were named for Benjamin Franklin, one of the founding fathers, and Georgia’s agent in London from 1768 to 1775.
The City of Savannah's water tower stood in the center of the square for many years, and this square has commonly been known as “Water Tower Square,” “Water Tank Square,” and “Reservoir Square.” This ward is filled primarily with post-Civil War commercial buildings.
Franklin Square was destroyed in 1935 when Montgomery Street became a federal route, but the square and much of the surrounding area were restored in the 1980s to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the founding of Georgia.
On the west side of the square at 23 Montgomery Street is the First African Baptist Church, recognized as the oldest black Christian congregation in the country. The church was organized in 1788, 12 years before the first Baptist church for whites was built in Savannah. For more information on the history of the First African Baptist Church, click here.
From Franklin Square back to Savannah Squares
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