St. Paul's Episcopal Church is located on the banks of the Savannah River, where in 1735, General Oglethorpe founded Georgia's second city as a fortress and Indian trading center upriver from Savannah. The church grounds are the site of the first church of Augusta built in 1749 and the location of old Fort Augusta built by colonists as protection against Indians.
Rebuilt as Fort Cornwallis during the Revolutionary War, the fort was captured by "Lighthorse Harry" Lee, which was a great blow to the British cause. The present building is a 1917-18 copy of the old Federal style church of 1820, the fourth church on the site that burned in the Great Augusta Fire of 1916. Architect of the church, Henry T. E. Wendell, planned and supervised construction of the present building with relatively faithful adherence to John Lund's original exterior design but with significant modifications to the earlier interior design.
The cemetery dates from the very earliest days of the church and has existing tombstones dating from as early as the 1780s. It is the resting place of a number Revolutionary War soldiers. It also contains the remains of Col. William Few, a signer of the United States Constitution. Tours of the church are available by appointment.
At the rear of the churchyard is a Celtic cross of granite erected by the Colonial Dames on the site of Fort Augusta/Cornwallis. General Oglethorpe brought the damaged cannon at its foot from England in 1733 for use at the fort.