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Historic Places

Also look at the Useful Links page for historic places that are active museums and historic sites.

Historic Areas and Towns

  • National Register of Historic Places - Map of 31 locations in St. Mary's County on the National Register of Historic Places
  • Maryland Historic Trust (MHT) Inventory of Historic Properties - There are 1,096 historic properties in St. Mary's County recorded in the inventory.  Each property record has an intake sheet, history, physical description, maps, and photos.  An amazing resource!
    • List of Historic Properties  -The page will come up filtered for St. Mary's County properties.  Numbers go from SM-1 to SM-933. There are 11 pages.  
    • Map of Historic Properties - St. Mary's County Government GIS map with the Historic Properties layer turned on.  All 1,096 historic properties are represented by a purple dot.  Pan and zoom the map to explore a certain area.  Click on a dot to show the property name, and click the "State Summary PDF" link to see the MHT description.
  • Cecil's Mill Historic District / Clifton Factory
  • Chaptico - A History of St Mary's County's 4th District - 54-page booklet written by Joseph E. Norris Jr. in 1984 in conjunction with the Chaptico 350th Anniversary Committee.
  • Charlotte Hall Military Academy - Initially established as Charlotte Hall School in 1774 by Queen Charlotte.  It provided for "the liberal and pious education of youth to better fit them for the discharge of their duties for the British Empire."
  • Patuxent River Naval Air Station - Established by the Navy in 1945 as a testing location for Naval aircraft

Historic Churches

  • Historic Churches and Religious Sites of St. Mary's County, Maryland - Brochure published by St. Mary's County Division of Tourism.  Documents 14 important sites in the county.
  • All Faith Episcopal Church - Mechanicsville, MD - When the Parish of All Faith in St. Mary's County was created in 1692, the Parish Church at Huntersville was already built and named "All Faith."  According to competent authority, the name "All Faith" was originally "Allfaiths" because in Resurrection Hundred it was the only building set aside for religious worship and all religious faiths used it.
  • Christ Episcopal Church - Chaptico, MD - Christ Episcopal Church, Chaptico, is one of the oldest churches in continual use in America.  The congregation dates from 1640, only six years after the landings of the Ark and the Dove at St. Clement’s Island, establishing the Maryland colony. 
  • St. Andrew's Episcopal Church - California, MD - Founded in 1744, the present church was built in 1767, designed by William Boulton who crafted the woodwork at nearby Sotterley Plantation. It is an outstanding example of colonial architecture.
  • St. Francis Xavier - Newtown, MD - Nearly three and one-half centuries of history, beginning with the establishment of Catholicism in English America, have been witnessed by Newtowne, Maryland.  As its name implies, Newtowne was the first settlement in the Maryland province after the original at St. Mary’s City.  
  • St. Georges Episcopal Church - Valley Lee, MD - The first wooden church was built here in Valley Lee between 1638 and 1642. The current church built in 1799, is home to the oldest Episcopal Parish in Maryland.
  • St. Ignatius Church, St. Mary's City, MD - The first chapel of St. Ignatius was built in 1641 in St. Mary's City. In 1704, the colony's early policies of religious toleration were abolished and the chapel was closed. The church was dismantled and the bricks taken down river to land owned by the Jesuits. After the American Revolution, in 1785, the present day St. Ignatius Church was built.
  • St. Nicholas Chapel Celebrates 100 Years - St. Nicholas Chapel, located at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, is the only Department of Defense chapel that had its beginnings as a Roman Catholic mission, then church, and since World War II, has been a Navy military chapel.

  • St. Peter Claver - Ridge, MD - St. Peter Claver Church of Ridge was not in existence when the Black Catholics attended Mass at various churches in the county. St. Peter emerged and blossomed from what was for nearly twenty years as part of St. Michael’s Church in Ridge, Maryland. 
  • Trinity Episcopal Church - St. Mary's, MD - Originally established in 1638, the first Trinity Church was a wooden structure located on Smith Creek. In 1642, it was moved to St. Mary's City and in 1694, when the state capital was moved from St. Mary's City to Annapolis, the local State House served as the church for 134 years. The present-day church was constructed in 1829 using brick salvaged from the original 1676 State House. 

Roads, Trails and Byways





  • St. Mary's County Cemetery Project - Documents basic information about all known cemeteries in St. Mary's County. Project by the St. Mary's County Historic Preservation Commission
  • Point Lookout Confederate Cemetery - Ridge, Maryland - By the end of the Civil War, more than 50,000 Confederate prisoners had passed through Point Lookout’s gates, making it the largest prisoner of war facility in the north. The soldiers who died at the prison camp are now buried at Point Lookout Confederate Cemetery located north of the historic prison.
  • St. Nicholas Cemetery: A Window to the Past - In 1942, when the Navy acquired the land to build Naval Air Station Patuxent River, the town of Pearson and the farms at Cedar Point vanished; however, a tangible link to their past still exists in the cemetery surrounding St. Nicholas Chapel.
  • USS Tulip Monument & Cemetery - The monument marks the smallest federal cemetery in the nation. Originally built for China's military, in 1863, the Tulip was purchased by the Navy for use in the Potomac Flotilla. On November 11, 1864, she left the flotilla base at St. Inigoes on her way to the Navy shipyards in Washington D.C., for repair. Not long underway, as she passed the Piney Point lighthouse, the boiler exploded and she sank immediately. Only eight of the crew of fifty-seven survived.
  • Find a Grave - Find the graves of ancestors, create virtual memorials or add photos, virtual flowers and a note to a loved one's memorial.  Over 210 million records