• info@wildcumberland.org
  • PO Box 872 Scottdale, GA 30079


How do I send mail to Carol Ruckdeschel?

You may send mail to:

Wild Cumberland
P.O. Box 872
Scottdale, GA 30079

Please note that we cannot guarantee a response.

What is, and how do I reach Little Cumberland Island?

Little Cumberland Island is within the boundaries of the Cumberland Island National Seashore, but is not owned by the federal government. It is owned by the Little Cumberland Island Homes Association, Inc., and its members. Little Cumberland Island is managed as a wildlife preserve in accordance with the terms of an agreement with the U.S. Department of Interior. It is not open to the public.


What about historic structures in the wilderness?

Most historic structures on Cumberland Island are located on the south end, outside the Congressionally-designated Wilderness area. There are a few exceptions:

First African Baptist Church

The First African Baptist Church, built in 1938, was made famous in 1996 by the wedding of John Kennedy, Jr., to Carolyn Bessette.

Both the National Park Service and the Greyfield Inn currently provide vehicle tours through the Wilderness to the church. For more information on how that is allowed to happen, read here.

The Chimneys

Located south of the Wilderness, these chimneys depict the rich African-American history of Cumberland Island. These historic structures are maintained and protected by the Park Service, but are currently under private lease and not accessible to the public.

Plum Orchard

Located midway on the west side of the island, this home was built for Andrew Carnegie’s brother’s fifth son, George, and is classified as a class-B structure of limited regional significance by The National Trust for Historic Preservation. Millions of dollars have been poured into renovating and restoring the building, and vehicle tours are permitted daily. Walk-in tours are also available. It is closed to the public during managed hunts on the island.

High Point Hotel

The High Point hotel is part of a retained estate by the Candler family of Atlanta, so it is currently off limits to the public.

What about the Cumberland Island Museum?

The Cumberland Island Museum was incorporated in 1985 to identify, preserve, and protect the biological archives of Cumberland and other local barrier islands and to expand knowledge of this area. Museum materials and collections serve as resources for scholars.

A Board of Directors is responsible for all aspects of the Museum and will oversee movement of the holdings to appropriate research museums after the lives of the current curators. For more information, please visit http://www.cimuseum.org/

Please note: The Cumberland Island National Seashore Museum in St. Marys, Georgia, is an entirely separate entity devoted primarily to cultural history and run by the National Park Service.

Where did the feral horses on Cumberland Island come from?

In 1920, the Carnegie family brought a load of mustangs from Arizona and released them on the island. Everything from Appaloosas, Tennessee Walking Horses, Thoroughbreds, Arabians, and retired circus horses have been released at various times to add genes to the herd.

Why not use contraception methods on the feral horse population? Why hasn't the National Park Service done anything about the feral horses?

Scientists and partners have been conducting studies about the feral horses for a long time. (1) Contraception efforts were attempted unsuccessfully on females in the past. (2)

Wild Cumberland believes the most effective and humane method of contraception for this population to be vasectomies on the male horse population. The National Park Service needs pressure from people who understand the ecological impact of these animals on Cumberland Island – let them hear from you!

  1. Turner, Monica Goigel (September 1988). “Simulation and management implications of feral horse grazing on Cumberland Island, Georgia”. Journal of Range Management. 41 (5): 441–447.
  2. Goodloe, Robin B.; Warren, Robert J.; Osborn, David A.; Hall, Cynthia (January 2000). “Population Characteristics of Feral Horses on Cumberland Island, Georgia and Their Management Implications” (PDF). Journal of Wildlife Management. 64 (1): 114–121. doi:10.2307/3802980. JSTOR 3802980.

Frequently Used Acronyms

Acronym Meaning
Army Corps of Engineers
Air Transportation Management Plan
Bureau of Land Management
Coastal Department of Natural Resources
Council on Environmental Quality
Cumberland Island National Seashore
Coastal Marshland Protection Act (Georgia)
Commercial Use Agreement/Authorization CWA - Clean Water Act
Draft Environmental Impact Statement DOD - Department of Defense
Department of Interior
Environmental Assessment
Environmental Impact Statement
Federal Aviation Administration
Final Environmental Impact Statement
Freedom of Information Act
Federal Register
Forest Service
Fish and Wildlife Service
Great American Outdoors Act
Georgia Dept of Natural Resources
Georgia Open Records Act
Little Cumberland Island
Marine Protection Act
National Environmental Protection Act
No Rockets Over Wilderness
National Wilderness Preservation System
Outstanding Natural Resource Waters
Record of Decision
Southeast Regional Office
Shore Protection Act
United States Department of Agriculture
Visitor Use Management Plan
Wilderness Management Plan
Wilderness Stewardship Division