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This is a past tour--for information only



Prince George's County
Saturday, April 21, 2018

10:00 A.M to 5:00 P.M.


Roads, paths, and waterways were the only means of transportation for colonial settlers until railroads began operating in Prince George’s County.  The Baltimore and Potomac Railroad was charted in 1853 and ran from Baltimore south to a point along the Potomac River in southern Maryland.  In 1873, the Pope’s Creek branch of the railroad allowed for the movement of people and freight, mainly tobacco, from southern Prince George’s County to Baltimore, Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia.  Brandywine, Maryland, created by the Early family, circa 1873, was the only town on the Pope’s Creek route that developed into a railroad town.  Aquasco, originally named Woodville after Peter Wood III, was known as a crossroads town, as it was on a north-south land route (now Route 381) that connected St. Mary’s City, Maryland’s original seat of government, to the new capital in 1694, Anne Arundel Town (now Annapolis).  The Southern Maryland Railroad, a branch built off the Pope’s Creek Line and opened in 1881, headed south and east, but did not directly serve Aquasco until a spur was built in 1964 for the PEPCO generating plant at Chalk Point.  Come travel along the roads and byways and explore these sites to learn about the history, charm, and character of southern Prince George’s County.


Chair: Jack Thompson, Junior

Committee Chairmen:  House & Properties Selection: Jack Thompson, Junior, Flowers: Pamela L. Smart, Mount Airy Clay Breakers, part of District One of the National Capitol Area Garden Clubs Publicity: St. Thomas Parish / Jack Thompson, Junior, Roadmarking: Jeff Colburn, Photographer:  Katharine Bryant, Script:  Jack Thompson, Junior and Donna Schneider, Treasurer:  Iona Harrison

Special Project:  Continuing exterior and interior restoration of the Chapel of the Incarnation.


1. Information Center and the Chapel of the Incarnation (1916)

14070 Brandywine Road, Brandywine, Maryland 20613. On initiative of the Episcopal women of Brandywine a Sunday school began in 1911.  The Chapel is built on land that was originally part of “The Widow’s Trouble.”  The cornerstone was laid by Bishop Alfred Harding, Bishop of Washington, September 1916, and the first service was held in early 1917.  Designed by architect and builder, William J. Palmer, it is the premier example of the Spanish Mission style in Southern Maryland. The Chapel  is on the National Register of Historic Places and is a Prince George’s County Historic  Site. The exterior is protected by easement from the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission.  Robert Early Baden, DDS, the first dentist in Southern Maryland, was a parishioner and vestryman.  A baptismal font was donated to the Chapel and is estimated to date back to around 1422.  The Chapel is an active part of St. Thomas’ Episcopal Parish. Restrooms will be available.  The Rev. Dr. Peter M. Antoci, Priest in Charge.

2. William W. Early House


The William W. Early House is important for its architectural, transportation, and community planning themes. It is a fine example of Queen Anne style domestic architecture, distinguished by its projecting corner tower, wraparound veranda and great variety of surface detail. This house is one of the best examples of its type in Prince George’s County. It is closely connected with the development of the railroad, and served as the home and office of the railroad manager. It is also connected with the planning and development of the village of Brandywine, having been built for a member of the family of William H. Early, an important landowner and developer of this railroad village.


3. Connick's Folly and Cemetery


Connick's Folly is a rare example of a mid-nineteenth-century Federal-style brick farmhouse. It was built circa 1847 by Clement Connick and his wife, Sofia, whose grave sites are in an iron-fenced cemetery on a hill to the south of the house. Purchased from the Connick family heirs in 1970, the house has been cared for by John and Carol Flewelling. The house is now protected within tracts of land equaling more than 90 acres. 

4. Romano Vineyard & Winery

15715 Bald Eagle School Road, Brandywine, Maryland 20613. (Luncheon will also be available for pick-up at Romano, for information, see description in the beginning of the Prince George’s County Tour) Romano Vineyard & Winery was founded in 2007 by Joseph and Jo-Ann Romano. In 2006, Joseph and Jo-Ann stumbled across a grant advertisement, looking for people willing to grow grapes for wine. They visited wineries all over Maryland to learn the business, researching grapes and tasting the state's best wines before they finally decided to transform their corn and soybean field into a vineyard. First, the farm was covered in flags, marking where each post and vine would be placed. But soon, the flags were replaced by posts, and then 1,300 holes were drilled into the soil, ready for the first grape planting. In spring 2007, with the help of family and friends, the Romano's field, where tobacco and then corn and soybeans had grown, transformed into a vineyard. Today, the vineyard is home to four wine grape varietals – Chambourcin, Vidal, Cayuga and Traminette. There will be wine tasting and tours throughout the day.  Restrooms will be available.  Owners: Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Romano.

5. Williams House


The Williams house is a lovely farm style home with a stunning wraparound porch.  The house is situated to take full advantage of the beautiful surrounding rural countryside.  The house was built in 1986 with a rear addition built in 1999 incorporating two distinct architectural styles.  The addition created many new beautiful spaces, including a huge country gourmet kitchen.  Once inside, you will find an elegantly appointed interior with custom decorating features throughout. Of special interest are some of the family’s antique furnishings.  At the time of the addition, a large pool house with a screened in porch was also built, taking full advantage of the lovely patio, pool, and landscaping. The interior of the pool house features vaulted ceilings with a large space for year-round entertaining. Of special note, also located in the pool house, is a Stafford Nickelodeon Company player piano adding entertaining pleasure for visiting friends and family. 

6. St. Mary’s Chapel

16305 St. Mary’s Church Road, Aquasco, MD 20608. The first  St. Mary’s Chapel was built in 1848 as a parochial mission within St. Paul’s Parish, Baden.  Local families donated land for the chapel and cemetery. Mrs. Mary Thomas was the first person to be buried in the churchyard on Christmas Day in 1851. The 1848 wooden frame structure was replaced with the present stucco covered frame structure in 1920.  Building contractors were Demmons and Parkill of D.C.  According to a report in The Prince George’s Enquirer, the first service in the new chapel was held on October 1, 1920.  Theinterior natural lighting is from the dormer windows and casement windows on each side of the nave.  Surrounding the altar stained glass window of Christ and the children is a beautiful reredos. The Chapel is an example of Tudor-inspired church architecture and is the only historic example of its type in Prince George’s County.  St. Mary’s Chapel is part of St. Paul’s Parish, Baden, Episcopal Church

7. St. Mary’s Rectory


St. Mary’s Church and the Rectory were built on a four-acre parcel donated by a member of the congregation in 1850.  The five-acre property today includes part of this original donation and part of a supplementary donation from 1868. The Rectory is an excellent example of a local adaptation of Greek Revival and Italianate styles.  It served a vital purpose from its 19th century beginnings in the agricultural community of Woodville/Aquasco until it was sold to private owners in 1977. The present plan and appearance of the symmetrical aspects of the Rectory reflect alterations and improvements completed in 1856.  The Rector’s study, the one story addition at the southwest corner, was completed in 1876. The present owners of the Rectory purchased it from the couple responsible for its historical preservation, Michael and Mary Johns, in 2015. 

8. The House at P.A. Bowen Farmstead


Mr. Philander A. Bowen purchased what was then the Aquasco Mill Farm with its two-story house (built in the late 1600s) in 1862 from George Allen Turner. Mr. Bowen built the existing house in 1870, retaining the older house to serve as the pantry and kitchen. The property remained in the Bowen family until 1927. The house has a Federal-era side-hall and double parlor plan typical of many planter houses in Prince George’s County, combined with Victorian-era Italianate detailing. The first floor has thirteen-foot ceilings and features a grand staircase and three-paneled pocket doors separating the parlor from the dining room. In 2009, the property was purchased by Geoffrey Morell and Sally Fallon Morell who renovated the house throughout, restoring many of the original details while enlarging the library and master bedroom, replacing the enclosed porch on the west side, installing a modern gourmet kitchen, and furnishing the house with period antiques.  

9. P.A. Bowen Farmstead

P.A. Bowen Farmstead features grass-based livestock and the production of fine artisan raw cheese. Situated in the gentle hills of Maryland’s Prince Georges County, this diverse multi-species farm seeks to mimic the patterns of nature using old-fashioned grazing techniques coupled with modern technologies. The different animal species work symbiotically to heal and build the soil, and to produce nutrient-dense foods that heal and nourish. Hormones, growth-enhancers, pesticides and herbicides are never used on the P.A. Bowen Farmstead. In 2009, Geoffrey Morell and Sally Fallon Morell purchased the ninety-five-acre Maryland property with the goal of creating an integrated farm that not only supplies high-quality, pasture-fed products, but also serves as an engine for the economic revitalization of the whole region. At the P.A. Bowen Farmstead, all animals are provided with a habitat that allows them to thrive: pigs root through the forests; broilers in their “chicken tractors” and hens roaming freely work over the pastures recently grazed on by the dairy herd; and the beautiful Jersey cows, milked just once a day, are given new pasture daily. The grain mix fed to pigs and poultry (and in very small amounts to the cows) is non-GMO and soy-free, and mostly locally grown. The newly renovated tobacco barn at P. A. Bowen Farmstead is available for events such as weddings, fundraisers and corporate picnics. The Farm Store will be open for purchase of farm products.

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