Coltons Point in St. Mary's County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Freedom to Worship
The Quest for Tolerance
So many new beginnings. A Catholic Mass, the first in English America, was celebrated here on the Island on March 25, 1634. It was a time of beginnings—the first day of the year on the old Julian calendar and the Feast of the Annunciation.
Catholics were determined to practice their religion as they planted their new Maryland Colony. They had left an England where Catholics were persecuted and a Europe ravaged by bloody religious wars.
A hand-painted mural depicting this mass, shown above, graces the interior of the St. Clement's Island Museum.
Commemorating freedom. In 1934, people gathered here on Maryland's 300th birthday to remember the first settlers and their quest for religious toleration. A 40-foot cross, pictured here from the island's lighthouse tower during the ceremonies, has been a landmark ever since. It was constructed from 50-gallon oil barrels filled with cement and plywood frame covered with stucco.
Erected by Commissioners of St. Mary's County; St. Mary's County Museum Division; Friends of the St. Clement's Island and Piney Point
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Churches & Religion • Colonial Era • Settlements & Settlers. A significant historical date for this entry is March 25, 1634.
Location. 38° 12.504′ N, 76° 44.664′ W. Marker is in Coltons Point, Maryland, in St. Mary's County. The marker stands on the grounds of St. Clement's Island which features no paved roads. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: 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. St. Clement's Island (a few steps from this marker); Ancestral Garden (a few steps from this marker); Trade Expands (within shouting distance of this marker); Blackistone Lighthouse (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Blackistone Lighthouse (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Blackistone Lighthouse (within shouting distance of this marker); Blackistone Lighthouse Bell Tower (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); St. Clement's Hundred (about 300 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Coltons Point.
Related marker. Click here for another marker that is related to this marker. This marker has replaced the linked marker.
Credits. This page was last revised on August 27, 2022. It was originally submitted on August 27, 2022, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 83 times since then and 38 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on August 27, 2022, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.