Coltons Point in St. Mary's County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
With Great Emotion of Soul
The low strip of land across the water in front of you is St. Clement's Island. There, in March of 1634, English settlers first landed on what today is Maryland.
The Catholics among the mostly Protestant settlers were seeking a new life that would provide religious tolerance from a strict Protestant England. All were seeking new social and economic opportunities.
Three weeks after landing, Father Andrew White performed the first Catholic Mass in the English colonies. He described erecting a "great cross which we have hewn from a tree" and humbly chanting prayers "with great emotion of soul." They had openly celebrated their faith, which they could not have done in England.
Approximately 140 settlers arrived aboard two ships, the Ark and the much smaller Dove. The settlers named the island after St. Clement, the Catholic patron saint of sailors and seas, possibly in gratitude for their safety after a harrowing three-month Atlantic crossing. But they stayed here just briefly. The 400-acre island was too small for their settlement; they moved downriver to the site that would become
Settlers erect a cross on St. Clement's Island in March of 1634.
Historic watercolor of the Dove (left) and the Ark at St. Clement's Island. Leaders of the Piscataway Nation described the Ark as a canoe as big as an island.
Erected by Destination Southern Maryland; The Friends of the St. Clement's Island and Piney Point Museums; Commissioners of St. Mary's County; America's Byways; Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail, National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior; Maryland Heritage Areas Authority.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Churches & Religion • Colonial Era • Native Americans • Settlements & Settlers • Waterways & Vessels. A significant historical month for this entry is March 1634.
Location. 38° 13.481′ N, 76° 45.05′ W. Marker is in Coltons Point, Maryland, in St. Mary's County. Marker is on Point Breeze Road east of Colton Point Road, on the left when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 38358 Point Breeze Rd, Coltons Point MD 20626, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Journey to an Island (here, next to this marker); The Black Diamond Incident (within shouting distance of this marker); Saint Clement’s IslandMother of Light Shrine (within shouting distance of this marker); Dory Boats (within shouting distance of this marker); Charlotte Hall School (within shouting distance of this marker); St. Clements Manor (within shouting distance of this marker); St. Clement's Island Museum (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Coltons Point.
Additional keywords. With Great Emotion of Soul
Credits. This page was last revised on August 26, 2022. It was originally submitted on August 26, 2022, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 86 times since then and 32 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on August 26, 2022, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.