Wayne-Gordon House: Juliette Low Birthplace

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by smmmarti guide on May 7, 2002

It’s true that the copy of the biography of Juliette Low that I found one rainy afternoon in my grandfather’s basement was the first biography I ever read. It told the compelling tale of a girl raised in the grand old South during historical times that would prove to be as tumultuous as the young woman’s personal feelings about the limitations imposed on females in that time in history.

The story hits home to most young women. Yesterday I could run barefoot with my brother through the woods, shooting BB guns and playing "war" but today I was being told it wasn’t proper for a young lady. Instead, I should tend to the young ones, learn to cook and sew, sit more quietly and maybe read a book. Juliette’s story seemed to whisper, "don’t listen to it!"

I’m not sorry that I learned to cook and sew, care for babies, develop good posture and smile in polite company. I‘m not sorry that I embraced the obvious gifts that being the "fairer" sex can offer. I’m just glad that I read about Juliette at a time in life when that Ophelialike madness can threaten to seep into a young girl’s sense of freedom and self unless she has encouragement from somewhere else to be all that she is and can be. But most of all I’m grateful that I was able to continue to fish and play with fire responsibly, to train an arrow on a distant target and let it fly, to row a canoe and shoot a free throw, all under the acceptable guidance of the Girl Scouts.

In knowing this organization that offers young girls and women the awareness of their options in making contributions to the world, I feel I owe a personal debt of gratitude to it’s founder. Ms. Low managed to grow up in the South in an age preceding suffragettes and women‘s movements and still develop and pursue a passionate vehicle that would propel more girls toward self-reliance and a sense of achievement outside the home at an early age than ever before or since it’s founding.

Started with just eighteen girls in the carriage house outside The Low-Gordon family home, the organization now has nearly 4 million members and has influenced the lives and futures of over 50 million women since it’s inception. Devoted troops make the pilgrimage to the childhood birthplace of its founder joined by interested visitors from all over the world who climb up the steps to the "The Birthplace," as it’s known to all, and take the guided tour through the restored home outfitted with classic Egyptian Revival period pieces owned by the family as well as artwork by the grand dame herself. The Wayne-Gordon house, home to four generations of Gordons, was the first National History Landmark in Savannah, Georgia. This honor speaks to the tremendous contribution to society made by Juliette Gordon-Low.

Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace
10 East Oglethorpe Avenue
Savannah, Georgia, 31401
(912) 233-4501


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