New Roadside Historical Markers Installed

Stuart Grosvenor and members of the  Janet Montgomery Chapter of the DAR  dedicate the new Richard Montgomery  marker in Rockville.  Photo courtsey of Nancy Kurtz, MHT

Stuart Grosvenor and members of the
Janet Montgomery Chapter of the DAR
dedicate the new Richard Montgomery
marker in Rockville.
Photo courtsey of Nancy Kurtz, MHT

The Maryland Historical Trust, the State Highway Administration and local partners have developed and installed seven new markers along Maryland’s roadways.  The markers celebrate people, places and events important in the history of the state, including Ocean City, Maryland’s Atlantic Ocean resort; the Somerset County seat, established in the seventeenth century; a nineteenth century African American community and school in Anne Arundel County; the nation’s first war hero and namesake of Montgomery County; a hexagonal fieldstone school in Harford County; a seventeenth century battle along the Severn River; and a twentieth century African American community baseball park in Somerset County.

See more information on each of the markers below.

OCEAN CITY

Worcester County applied for a marker to celebrate the history of Maryland’s Atlantic Ocean resort.

Photo courtesy of Steve Hall, SHA

Photo courtesy of Steve Hall, SHA

Text:  EFFORTS TO ESTABLISH A RESORT ON THE BARRIER ISLAND BEGAN AS EARLY AS 1839.  IN THE LATE 1860S CONSTRUCTION OF THE WICOMICO & POCOMOKE RAILROAD PROMISED AN INCREASE IN BEACH VISITORS, PROMPTING INVESTORS TO LAY OUT STREETS AND BUILDING LOTS ON 267 ACRES PATENTED AS “THE LADYS RESORT TO THE OCEAN.”  THE RESORT BECAME KNOWN AS OCEAN CITY BY 1875, WHEN THE FIRST MAJOR OCEANFRONT HOTEL WAS OPENED.

SNOW HILL TOWN

Worcester County applied for a marker to commemorate the county seat, first established in the seventeenth century.

Location:  Courthouse, Market Street (MD 12), Snow Hill, Worcester County

Photo courtesy of Steve Hall, SHA

Photo courtesy of Steve Hall, SHA

Text:  ESTABLISHED IN 1686 AS PART OF THE CALVERT FAMILY’S OBJECTIVE TO CREATE TOWNS AND ADVANCE TRADE.   LAID OUT ON A SANDY RIDGE AT THE HEAD OF THE POCOMOKE RIVER, THE TOWN DEVELOPED AS A TRADING CENTER ON THE SEASIDE OF SOMERSET COUNTY, AND LATER, AS A COUNTY SEAT WHEN WORCESTER WAS ESTABLISHED IN 1742.

HARMANS

Betty Mack and Patricia Butler Caldwell proposed a marker to commemorate a nineteenth century African American community and the school that served the community from the early to the mid twentieth century.

Location:  1436 Dorsey Road, Harmans, Anne Arundel County

Photo courtesy of Nancy Kurtz, MHT

Photo courtesy of Nancy Kurtz, MHT

Text:  AN AFRICAN AMERICAN COMMUNITY AND CHURCH WERE ESTABLISHED NEARBY IN THE MID 19TH CENTURY.  IN 1918 THE BENEVOLENT SONS AND DAUGHTERS OF ABRAHAM, A MUTUAL AID SOCIETY, PURCHASED AND DONATED LAND ON THIS SITE FOR A TWO-ROOM SCHOOL WHICH WAS BUILT ACCORDING TO A ROSENWALD PROGRAM DESIGN, THE MOST MODERN AND PROGRESSIVE OF RURAL SCHOOL PLANS AT THE TIME.  THE SCHOOL WAS USED UNTIL 1955.

RICHARD MONTGOMERY, 1738-1775

As a Julius West Middle School student, Stuart Grosvenor discovered few knew anything about Richard Montgomery, the namesake of the county and the high school he would attend. He researched Montgomery’s life for a Montgomery County History Day competition and then proposed a roadside marker to honor him.  On December 2, Montgomery’s birthday, the marker was unveiled in the presence of county and city councilmembers and the Janet Montgomery Chapter of the DAR.

Photo courtesy of Nancy Kurtz, MHT

Photo courtesy of Nancy Kurtz, MHT

Text:  BORN IN IRELAND; SERVED IN THE BRITISH ARMY IN THE FRENCH & INDIAN WAR.  JOINED THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION AS THE MOST EXPERIENCED GENERAL IN THE CONTINENTAL ARMY. LED THE INVASION OF CANADA WHERE HE WAS KILLED IN THE BATTLE OF QUEBEC, BECOMING THE FIRST GENERAL TO DIE IN THE REVOLUTION AND AMERICA’S FIRST NATIONAL HERO.  WHEN MARYLAND’S CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION SPLIT FREDERICK COUNTY INTO THREE PARTS THE FOLLOWING YEAR, THEY NAMED THE WESTERN THIRD WASHINGTON AND THE EASTERN THIRD MONTGOMERY, THE FIRST OF MANY MEMORIALS TO MONTGOMERY IN THE NATION.

PROSPECT SCHOOL

Donald W. Horton proposed a marker, installed January 13, 2012, to commemorate a rare and unusual school house in Harford County.

Location: MD 161 north of Green Spring Road, Havre de Grace vicinity, Harford County

Prospect School, courtesy of Donald W. Horton

Prospect School, courtesy of Donald W. Horton

Photo courtesy of Steve Hall, SHA

Photo courtesy of Steve Hall, SHA

Text:  A HEXAGONAL FIELDSTONE STRUCTURE BUILT CA.1850 BY LOCAL STONE MASON JOSHUA W. STEVENS, THE PROSPECT SCHOOL SERVED GRADES ONE THROUGH EIGHT UNTIL 1930.  POLYGONAL BUILDINGS — MORE TYPICALLY OCTAGONS – WERE PROMOTED IN THE MID 19TH CENTURY FOR THEIR ECONOMICAL CONSTRUCTION, THERMAL EFFICIENCY, AND NATURAL LIGHT.  THE PROSPECT SCHOOL IS A RARE EXAMPLE OF THE POLYGONAL STYLE ADAPTED TO SCHOOL USE IN MARYLAND.

BATTLE OF THE SEVERN

A marker proposed by Bobby E. Leonard, PhD, was installed January 13, 2012, to denote a seventeenth century battle that took place in the Annapolis area and temporarily changed control of the Maryland Colony.

Location: Maryland 450 above the Governor Richie Overlook, Annapolis

Photo courtesy of Steve Hall, SHA

Photo courtesy of Steve Hall, SHA

Text:  ON MARCH 25, 1655, COLONIAL GOVERNOR WILLIAM STONE LANDED MARYLAND MILITIA AT THE PURITAN SETTLEMENT OF PROVIDENCE, LOCATED AT THE MOUTH OF THE SEVERN RIVER.  HE PLANNED TO SUBDUE THE SETTLERS WHO HAD ASSERTED THEIR INDEPENDENCE FROM THE GOVERNMENT IN ST. MARY’S CITY. THE PURITAN MILITIA DEFEATED STONE’S FORCES AND SECURED TEMPORARY CONTROL OF THE COLONY, RULING MARYLAND UNTIL 1658, WHEN AN AGREEMENT RESTORED PROPRIETARY AUTHORITY TO CECIL CALVERT, THE SECOND LORD BALTIMORE.

OAKSVILLE BALL PARK, ESTABLISHED 1949

Front row: Garland Hayward, Ephraim Hall, Marshall Corbin Second row:  James Hall, Wordell Corbin, William Stewart, George Stewart, Tyrone Miles Third row:  Darnell Doane, Perry Hall, Wilson Hall, Kendrick Nixon, Marlow White, Reggie Corbin, Kirkland Hall. Photo courtesy of Nancy Kurtz, MHT
Front row: Garland Hayward, Ephraim Hall, Marshall Corbin
Second row: James Hall, Wordell Corbin, William Stewart,
George Stewart, Tyrone Miles Third row: Darnell Doane, Perry Hall,
Wilson Hall, Kendrick Nixon, Marlow White, Reggie Corbin, Kirkland Hall.
Photo courtesy of Nancy Kurtz, MHT
Photo courtesy of Nancy Kurtz, MHT
Photo courtesy of Nancy Kurtz, MHT

Text:  ONE OF THE FEW SURVIVING AFRICAN AMERICAN  SANDLOT BASEBALL FIELDS.  HOME OF THE OAKSVILLE EAGLES, CREATED CA. 1910,  A COMMUNITY BASEBALL CLUB THAT TOURED NEIGHBORING STATES, PLAYING  AGAINST NEGRO LEAGUE TEAMS IN THE ERA BEFORE DESEGREGATION.  AFTER INTEGRATION OF BASEBALL, THE EAGLES WERE THE ONLY AFRICAN AMERICAN TEAM IN THE EASTERN SHORE BASEBALL LEAGUE.  THEY CONTINUED PLAYING UNTIL 1978, AT ONE TIME HOLDING A 48 GAME WINNING STREAK.

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