Days Inn was founded in 1970 on Tybee Island, Georgia by Cecil B. Day, a real estate developer who later achieved note as a prominent Christian philanthropist. The name was thought up by Day's friend Mannin Purvis of Savannah, Georgia who was the head of advertising for the Savannah Morning News. This first Days Inn has been purchased and renamed. The original name of the chain was "8 Days Inn" with a large number "8" in the sunburst area of the marquee sign. Through the 1970s hotel guests could take home a paperback Bible (usually the ABSGood News BibleNew Testament) from their guest rooms for free.