ExploreSouthernHistory.com - Boyhood Home of Woodrow Wilson, Georgia
ExploreSouthernHistory.com - Boyhood Home of Woodrow Wilson, Georgia
Boyhood Home of Woodrow Wilson
The 28th President of the United States spent his
boyhood years in this home. It was then the manse
of the First Presbyterian Church in Augusta, Georgia.
Woodrow Wilson Boyhood
The future President lived
here from 1860-1870. His
father was the minister of
First Presbyterian Church.
Woodrow Wilson in Youth
This photograph of young
Woodrow Wilson was taken
ca. 1868-1878. He lived in his
Boyhood Home in Augusta as
late as 1870.
Boyhood Home of Woodrow Wilson - Augusta, Georgia
The Home of a Future President
Copyright 2012 by Dale Cox
All rights reserved.
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Wilson and Lamar Homes
Woodrow Wilson's Boyhood
Home (L) stands next door to
the boyhood home of U.S.
Supreme Court Justice
Joseph R. Lamar.
Restored Historic Garden
The gardens at the Woodrow
Wilson Boyhood Home have
been restored and feature
plants that would have grown
there when Wilson was still a
The Boyhood Home of President Woodrow
Wilson is a beautifully preserved brick house
Augusta, Georgia.

It was here that the 28th President of th
United States spent the formative years of his
life and witnessed the tragic results of the
Civil War. His experiences as the son of a
Presbyterian minister in Augusta contributed
to his later policies as leader of the nation.

One of the last houses built in Augusta prior
to the outbreak of the Civil War, the home
was completed in 1859. The builder was a
local merchant named Aaron H. Jones.

Jones, however, never lived in the house but
sold it instead to the Trustees of First
Presbyterian Church. The church stands just
across Telfair Street from the house and the
trustees thought it would make an excellent
manse or home for their minister, the Rev.
Dr. Joseph Ruggles Wilson.

The sale of the house for $10,000 was
completed in February of 1860. It served as
the Presbyterian Manse of Augusta for the
next 70 years.

At the time the house was completed, the
street it faces was called McIntosh Street.
The name was later changed to Seventh
Street and today it can be seen, still in its
original location, at 419 Seventh Street.

The Wilson family moved in shortly after the
sale of the house was completed in 1860. At
the time it occupied the house, the family
included Rev. Dr. Joseph Ruggles Wilson,
his wife Janet Woodrow Wilson (called
Jessie and Jeanie by local residents), their
two daughters, 9-year-old Marion and 6-year-
old Annie, and their three year old son
Thomas Woodrow Wilson.

Then called Tommy, the young son of the
minister and his wife would one day become
the President of the United States.

It is interesting to note that the first memory of
President Wilson's life had to do with the
memory of another U.S. President. He was
standing by the front gate one day when two
men walked past discussing the election of
Abraham Lincoln. It was Lincoln's election
that led directly to the secession of Georgia
and the other Southern states and ultimately
to the Civil War.

The young future President lived through the
four years of the war in Augusta, watching as
troops marched in streets and wounded
Confederate soldiers were brought in by train
for treatment in the local hospitals. Like other
local boys he undoubtedly marveled as the
Confederate Powder Works was
built and put into operation on the
Canal. He also probably listened with both
fear and excitement as stories spread of
Sherman's March to the Sea and watched as
Confederate soldiers erected earthworks to
defend the city, even loopholing the wall of
Magnolia Cemetery.

In 1865, as the war ended, young Woodrow
Wilson saw an American President for the
first time. The leader was Confederate
President Jefferson Davis, who was brought
to Augusta following his capture by Federal
troops at Irwinton, Georgia.

Rev. Dr. Wilson and his family still lived in the
Manse in 1870 when he took his thirteen year
old son to see General Robert E. Lee, who
was visiting Augusta on his final Southern
tour. It was a striking moment for the young
future president.
Historic Sites of Augusta, Georgia
The family moved away that year when Rev.
Dr. Wilson was called to teach at a seminary
in Columbia, South Carolina. In later years,
President Wilson would say that, "The only
place in the country, the only place in the
world, where nothing has to be explained to
me, is the South."

Many hours of Woodrow Wilson's life in
Augusta were spent socializing with other
boys from his neighborhood in a group they
called the Lightfoot Baseball Club. Wilson
was the club's president, wrote its bylaws
and even required that the members follow
rules of Parliamentary Procedure during the

In addition to serving as the club's president,
Wilson also was its 2nd baseman. The 3rd
baseman, it is worth noting, was Joseph
Rucker Lamar who lived in the house next
door to the Presbyterian Manse. President
William Howard Taft appointed him to the
United States Supreme Court in 1910 and
was called upon by President Wilson in 1914
to negotiate a peace treaty with Mexico.

Woodrow Wilson went on to attend Davidson
College, the University of Virginia Law School
and Johns Hopkins University. He served as
President of Princeton University and was
elected Governor of New Jersey in 1910. Two
years later he was elected as President of
the United States, serving two terms from
1913-1921. President Wilson guided the
United States through World War I and was
involved in the forming of the League of
Nations, the predecessor to today's United

The Boyhood Home of President Woodrow
Wilson is located at 419 Seventh Street in
Augusta, Georgia. It is preserved by Historic
Augusta, Inc.

Tours are given on the hour from 10 a.m. - 4
p.m., Tuesday - Saturday. Each tour lasts
about 45 minutes. Admission is $5 for
adults, $4 for seniors and $3 for students
K-12. Children under 5 are admitted free.

Please click here to visit the official website
for more information.