If you’ve ever been to Georgia’s St. Simons Island, you’ll really find it no surprise that people have been exploring the place for over 4,500 years.

Starting way back in 2500 B.C., it was the Guale Indians who came over from what is now nearby St. Catherine’s Island to hunt and fish the bountiful land and waters of St. Simons. By the mid-1500’s the Spanish would arrive on St. Simons looking for gold and Catholic converts.  When the British came in 1702 looking for land, they found the island abandoned by both the Guale and the Spanish. As a result, they built Fort Frederica to make sure they never came back.

Queen’s Court Postcard circa mid-20th century.
Image courtesy of the Jim Seelen Motel Images Collection.

The colonist came after the Revolution and started farming the land making sea island cotton famous by the time of the Civil War. By the late 1800s it would be lumber that helped the island thrive. It also started the beginning of the tourism business on the island.

1924 marked the opening of the Brunswick – St. Simons Causeway (now called the known as the Torras Causeway). Over 5,000 cars traveled from Brunswick, Georgia to St. Simons Island via the causeway on its first day, thus paving the way for well-located residential and resort development.

During World War II, military troops training in nearby Camp Stewart (now Fort Stewart) took their weekend furloughs at St. Simons.

After the war, returning soldiers would cause the biggest boom in tourism on the island that lasted into the 1950s and 1960s, making St. Simons Island one of the biggest road trip destinations on the East Coast. It was during this boom that the Queens Court Inn would be built for anybody looking for a little rest and relaxation.

The Queens Court Inn

The Queens Court Inn was built by Atlanta banker Jere Newton in 1948. At the time, the hotel featured 24 rooms located in three two-story cinderblock buildings where amenities included air-conditioning window units, tiled bathrooms, a swimming pool, a cocktail lounge and “excellent dining facilities” according to an earlier postcard of the motel. Some of the rooms also featured kitchenettes for the vacationing family or traveling chef.

The Queens Court pool.
Image courtesy of Rachel Hopper Boyd via Facebook.

Jere Newton would subsequently sell the hotel a few years later to the McCaskill family. Dorothy and her children, Donnie and Anna Belle manage the place for the next few decades. People remember it for the green grass and feeling of community as people came back year after year for weeks at a time to sit on lawn chairs in the shade of the oak trees and sip cocktails with their neighbors while their children played in the pool.

Around 2016 the McCaskills sold Queens Court Inn to Jim Soukup and Iyan Tan who renovated it in 2016. Still, the Queens Court has managed to keep its “Old Island Charm” much the way it has for 74 years. Some of the rooms still feature kitchenettes and kids and adults alike can still enjoy the outdoor pool. Other amenities include air-conditioning, refrigerators and free WIFI. The Queens Court is also in walking distance of shopping, dining, fishing and the beach.

If you’re looking for that mid-century modern motel vibe mixed in with some of old school Southern charm, then the Queens Court is sure to be a great place for you to stay as it has been for generations of families.

Stuckey’s – We’re Making Road Trips Fun Again!