Leonardtown in St. Mary's County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
The Great House
During its 225 years the Great House provided offices for county agencies, local businesses and professionals while serving as a boarding house, hotel, tavern, billiard room, stage depot, and private residence.
In 1802 the Georgetown and Port Tobacco mail stage was extended to Thompson's Inn at Leonardtown. James Thompson Jr. proprietor was father of 8 sons, four who fought the British during the War of 1812 and thus became known to posterity as the “Fighting Thompsons'.”
In 1818 then tavern proprietor, Philip Greenwell, for the yearly rent of one bottle of Madeira wine to Henry G.S. Key, enjoyed the use of a 15 foot strip of land running along and parallel
The Leonardtown Herald and subsequently the Saint Mary's Beacon were published from this location from 1839 until the demise of the building in 1960. From 1855 through 1952 three generations of the King family, John Franklin, Francis Vernon and Aloysius Fenwick lived and ran the paper from this location.
On April 25, 1905 the Leonardtown telephone exchange, located in the “Beacon Building” opened with 25 phones on the line.
In September 2 1911, after inspecting the new road from Mechanicsville to Leonardtown, Governor Crothers posed for a photograph in front of the Beacon building with a team of oxen symbolizing the passing of the ox team in St. Mary's as an essential element of transportation.
St.Mary;s County Health Department was located on the second floor of the Beacon Building from 1934 to 1953.
The two English yew trees located on this lot were located in the front yard of the structure and are thought to have been brought from England and planted during the Colonial period.
Location. 38° 17.383′ N, 76° 38.167′ W. Marker is in Leonardtown, Maryland, in St. Mary's County. Marker can be reached from Court House Drive when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Leonardtown (a few steps from this marker); This Cannon (within shouting distance of this marker); A Town Spared (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); World War I Monument -- Leonardtown (about 400 feet away); a different marker also named Leonardtown (about 500 feet away); War Comes to Breton Bay (about 600 feet away); The Mural Story (about 700 feet away); Tudor Hall (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Leonardtown.
Categories. • Industry & Commerce • Man-Made Features •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on January 18, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. This page has been viewed 275 times since then and 8 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on January 18, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.