Port Wentworth lies about 3.3 nautical miles upriver from the Port of Savannah. Part of the Savannah Metropolitan Statistical Area, Port Wentworth is home to over five thousand people.
Archeological evidence suggests that the area has been inhabited for as long as 12 thousand years. The rich estuaries offered abundant natural resources to the hunter-gatherers that roamed the Port Wentworth area. Over time, the indigenous people started growing crops, and they established villages along the Savannah River where cultivation was supplemented with wild game and fish.
When Europeans arrived in the Port Wentworth area in 1733, they encountered the Creek Confederacy, an alliance of several tribes. The Creek Nation was the major group within the Confederacy. Today, these peoples are known as the Muskogee.
Port Wentworth was part of the early Trust Colony of Georgia when it was founded by European colonists in 1733. The early colonists soon developed big plantations along the Savannah River growing cotton and rice. Mulberry Grove Plantation was a leading rice plantation in the Trust Colony of Georgia.
At the time of the Revolutionary War, Port Wentworth's Mulberry Grove Plantation belonged to Royalist Lieutenant Governor John Graham. After the American Revolution, the State of Georgia granted the plantation to Major General Nathanael Greene to reward his military role. One of George Washington's top commanders, Greene took much of the South from the British.
Inventor Eli Whitney who was the tutor for the Greene's children, invented the cotton gin at Mulberry Grove in 1793, and a big ginning machine was built on the plantation. The cotton gin was instrumental in building the economy of the South. Unfortunately, the Mulberry Grove Plantation in Port Wentworth was destroyed during Sherman's March to the sea as Union troops took control of Savannah.
Port Wentworth was incorporated in 1957. Today, its economy is based largely on industry that includes pulp and paper (lumber), ship-building, railroads, refining sugar, and baking bricks in local kilns. Banking is also important to Port Wentworth's economy.