I copied this from the Cumberland Island website because they said it better than I ever could.
"Welcome to Georgia's largest barrier island and one of the most spectacular natural habitats in the Northern Hemisphere. The greatest and most lasting value of the Island is its ability to change us. It is a place of transformation. It is this intangible feature that seems to be the most important benefit which Cumberland Island has for its guests. This spiritual quality is what, year after year, its visitors, residents, and Park Service employees seem to believe is its most important contribution to our people."
Getaway's Anna Hider has summed up the history of the place without going into too much detail:
"...one of the most interesting and important estates in American history is this ruined mansion out on Georgia's Cumberland Island, part of the Cumberland National Seashore. More than one famous figure occupied the island (as far back as the 1730's!) and yet the remains have been left to crumble.
James Oglethorpe, the man who founded the state of Georgia, was the first to occupy the island. He built a hunting lodge he called "Dungeness" there in 1736. After that, the next major owner was Revolutionary War hero Nathaniel Greene, who.... built another iteration of Dungeness on the estate in 1803. The island played a big role in the War of 1812, when the British occupied it and used it as a headquarters, and Robert E. Lee's father stayed in the mansion for a few years before his death. The island was abandoned during the Civil War, and Dungeness II burned down."
Finally Thomas Carnegie (brother of the famously wealthy Andrew Carnegie) and his wife built yet another Dungeness, a 59-room Queen Anne style mansion. The Carnegie family left the island in 1925, and the house burned down and fell into ruin. Now cared for by the National Park Service, the island is designated as a National Seashore.
I hope you all enjoyed my little tour. If you like wild, unspoiled nature, I strongly recommend taking the trip!