Photo: Courtesy Savannah Chamber of Commerce
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Telfair Arts Museum

Mary Telfair was a generous woman, to a degree. When she died in 1875, she bequeathed her family's English Regency residence to the Telfair Academy of Arts and Sciences in Savannah, Georgia, which she established in her will. The house is now part of the Telfair Arts Museum. But, despite her bequest, Mary Telfair remains a possessive spirit who makes her displeasure apparent when alterations are made to the house. According to museum staff, she is particularly aggravated when her portrait is tinkered with. Part of the rotunda ceiling crashed through the newer ceiling below it the last time the painting was moved. Mary's last wishes forbade eating or drinking in the house. One evening, when a sudden thunderstorm forced an event to be moved inside, a sudden gust of wind blew through the mansion, breaking windows. The staff now holds all events in the museum's newer buildings. The entire museum is open every day except Tuesday, and if you visit, you had better believe that Mary Telfair is watching to make sure you behave yourself in her house.
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