“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Coltons Point in St. Mary's County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)

Maryland Began Here!

Maryland Began Here! Marker image. Click for full size.
By F. Robby, September 12, 2008
1. Maryland Began Here! Marker
Inscription.  Two ships, the 400-ton Ark and the 50-ton Dove landed almost 150 English settlers here in March of 1634. After a stormy passage from England, the 28-year-old Governor Leonard Calvert, brother of Lord Baltimore, looked for a safe place to plant his colony. They found a haven on this island, with "infinite swarms Herons," while the governor searched for a permanent place for settlement.

The Piscataway Nation, frightened by the Ark, a "Canoe as big as an island," built "great fires over all the country" and "drew together 500 bowmen." Governor Calvert sailed upriver and met with a friendly emperor of the Piscataway who "gave leave to us to set down where we pleased." When the governor returned he and other Catholics set aside March 25 to erect a cross and celebrate mass. Within a few days, the settlers sailed down the Potomac River and planted "our town we call St. Maries."

[image of Cecil Calvert] The Man who Founded Maryland
When the first Lord Baltimore, George Calvert, died in 1632, his 27-year-old son, Cecil Calvert, ably carried out his plan to settle Maryland. The second Lord Baltimore
Maryland Began Here! Marker image. Click for full size.
By F. Robby, September 12, 2008
2. Maryland Began Here! Marker
The Maryland coastline is in the background.
stayed in England and protected his Maryland interests for over 40 years. He proudly holds a map of Maryland as his grandson and namesake points to the colony.

How Did the Island Look When the First Settlers Arrived?
"The ground is heare, as in very many places, covered with pokiberries, (a little wilde walnut hard of shell, but with a sweet kernel) with ackhornes, black walnut, cedar, saxafras, vines, salad-herbes, and such like. It is above 400 acres, and therefore too little to seat upon for us; therefore they have designed it for a fort to Command the [Potomac] river, meaneing to raise another on the maine land against it, and soe to keep the river from forraigne trade, here being the narrowest of the river." - Account of Ark passanger and Jesuit missionary Father Andrew White in Voyage to Maryland.

[map image] The Oldest Map of Maryland
This map, created to publicize the new maryland Colony, includes the Potomac River and St. Clement's Island, here called Heron's Island, as well as St. Mary's City.
Erected by Chesapeake Bay Gateways Network, Maryland Department of Natural Resources.
Location. 38° 12.747′ N, 76° 44.655′ W. Marker is in Coltons Point, Maryland, in St. Mary's County
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. Marker can be reached from Point Breeze Road 0.2 miles from Colton Point Road (Maryland Route 242). Marker is on St. Clements Island which is only accessibly by boat. A ferry operates on weekends from the St. Clement's Island Museum on Point Breeze Road. 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. Welcome to St. Clement's Island (about 800 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Shrinking Island (approx. mile away); St. Clement's Island (approx. mile away); "With a laudable and pious zeal for the propagation of the Christian faith" (approx. mile away); " of the pleasantest summer resorts on the Potomac" (approx. mile away); a different marker also named Welcome to St. Clement's Island (approx. 0.3 miles away); Blackistone Island Lighthouse (approx. 0.3 miles away); A Target for Big Guns (approx. 0.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Coltons Point.
Categories. Churches & ReligionColonial EraForts or CastlesNotable EventsSettlements & Settlers

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Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 7, 2009, by F. Robby of Baltimore, Maryland. This page has been viewed 810 times since then and 7 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on November 7, 2009, by F. Robby of Baltimore, Maryland.
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