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Pooler Magazine

The W.B. Biddenbach House, Circa 1888

Mar 08, 2023 08:02AM ● By Chris Antonio

The W.B. Biddenbach House, Circa 1888

Old houses that are loved and cherished become only more beautiful over time. The W.B. Biddenbach House, circa 1888 is one such house. Tucked away on a large corner lot in Pooler, GA, this Plantation Home with Colonial Revival architecture is a true Southern classic, as lovely as the camellias that bloom in the backyard come early spring.

Beautifully maintained, kept mostly in her original form, the W.B.Biddenbach home has not only survived, it has thrived under the loving care of its owners throughout the years.

The Owners

 The lot was originally subdivided by Dan Newton, who may have also built the house. The land was purchased from the Central Georgia Railroad. Historically, this home was the original meeting place for Trinity Methodist Pooler—founded in 1888—where Biddenbach was one of the three original Trustees of the Church. The Biddenbach Family had arrived in Georgia in 1750 when Christian Biddenbach immigrated from Germany. He, and other family members, are buried in Ebenezer, Effingham County.

The next owner on record is Mrs. Gary Goggins (Lola), who resided there from 1935-1968. She was one of the first women to vote in the state of Georgia, the only woman Alderman for Pooler at that time, and was also one of the original Trustees of the Church.

It was then purchased in 1973 by Pooler historian and beloved local history teacher, Wayne Seay. Born in Florida, his family moved “north” to Georgia and, during World War II, Seay served in the 1st Infantry Division (“The Big Red One”), U.S. Army. After completing his military service, he joined the faculty of Robert W. Groves High School where he taught history and social studies for 28 years.

Seay was elected to the Pooler City Council, where he served for a time as Mayor Pro-Tem. A lifelong member of Trinity Methodist Church Pooler, he served as Sunday School teacher, choir member (60 years), song leader and Church Historian. He cherished his Historic Home which has remained in his Family continuously.

The House Today

Today the house is a blend of antique charm and modern practicality. As you approach the home, the welcoming front porch lends views through the floor to ceiling float glass windows framed by the full-length vintage shutters. The porch is a classic Southern porch, with ample room for casual visiting and formal entertaining.

The original hardwood floors throughout the House are complemented by the wide hallways of the era. Antique touches include shiplap walls, clawfoot bathtubs, and gorgeous fireplace mantles. The home is decorated with antiques throughout and the original woodwork is in pristine condition. The old-fashioned back porch is fully screened and just the right size for a couple of rocking chairs and an antique pie safe. It was made for sipping lemonade and watching the bees buzz in the garden. Spanish moss abounds.

At just over 3,000 square feet, the house currently has two full size kitchens, two dining rooms, three living rooms, three bedrooms and two baths. It has been a family residence but would also make a great bed and breakfast. There is also a large wooden outbuilding, original to the property, with two large bays. There is a new tin roof, a new HVAC System (2022), double pane windows (with transferable warranty) and the undercarriage has been maintained throughout the years. Both the house and exterior property are in wonderful condition.

The W.B. Biddenbach House is almost as old as Pooler itself and having stood for 135 years (and through many hurricanes), it has witnessed much history. Since the house was built the electric lamp, the teddy bear, air conditioning, the airplane, the telephone, the car, the space shuttle, the computer, and the cell phone have all been invented. The house has stood through the Spanish American War, WWI, WWII, the Cold War, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and the War on Terror. It has seen women obtaining the right to vote, the Prohibition era, the stock market crash of 1929, the Great Depression, the Civil Rights Movement, and the landing on the moon. Pooler itself has grown and expanded so much its original founders would be hard pressed to recognize it today, but yet the house remains almost exactly the same as when it was built.

The beautiful walkways made from old bricks from the Goggins Brick Company still grace the grounds. With its original features, such as the charming mantles, this home is a haven—warm and welcoming. For those who love history and old-fashioned craftsmanship, it is a pleasure simply to walk around its large well-appointed rooms. This house provides all the appeal of a historic home but has been updated to live in current times.

After serving as a family home for the last 50 years, it is now being sold. Its southern grace and charm ensure it will truly be cherished by the next lucky owner.