The Lower House
Hampton National Historic Site
This building, historically referred to as the “Lower House” by the Ridgely family, served a variety of purposes. Originally, Hamptonís first master, Captain Charles Ridgely, lived in this house before the mansion was completed. In the 19th century, the building served primarily as a residence for the farm manager or overseer. Close to both fields and farm slaves, it was “lower” in many respects: the overseer was lower in social standing than the estate owner and his quarters were located geographically lower than the mansion. Activities of the Home Farm were managed from this building. When Hampton became a National Historic Site in 1948, John Ridgely Jr., the last owner of the estate, moved from the mansion back here to the Lower House.
(Inscription under the bell in the upper left)
The bell (ca.1850) atop the Lower House called the enslaved into and out of the field.
(Inscription beside the overseer in the lower left)
On a large estate like Hampton, overseers were often caught between the demands of the masters and the needs of the workers. Hamptonís overseers were a diverse group of men, including some who were relatives. Most stayed on about ten years.
Location. 39° 25.248′ N, 76° 35.184′ W. Marker is in Towson, Maryland, in Baltimore County. Marker is on Hampton Lane. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 535 Hampton Lane, Towson MD 21286, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The View from Below (here, next to this marker); Quarters #2 & 3 (within shouting distance of this marker); A Slave Village (within shouting distance of this marker); Corn Culture (within shouting distance of this marker); In Memoriam (about 700 feet away, measured in a direct line); Ice Cream in July-Icehouse, ca.1790 (approx. 0.3 miles away); Hampton: An American Story (approx. 0.3 miles away); Ridgely's Pride (approx. 0.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Towson.
Categories. • African Americans • Civil Rights • Patriots & Patriotism •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 5, 2014, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. This page has been viewed 360 times since then and 42 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on November 5, 2014, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.