Every place has a unique history, and that’s certainly the case in Prince George’s. The region has been gifted with layers of life, from human to environmental. From the War of 1812 to the struggle of enslaved communities, to the development of aviation, each step has had a major impact on Prince George’s and its people. Today, you can peek into the past at many of these sites, which have been carefully protected and preserved.
Stop by one of these historical locations in Prince George’s to understand its history:
- Step back in time at the Belair Mansion in Bowie, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The estate was built in 1745 for the Provincial Governor and his wife, and it went on to become the home of a noted American horseman. Look through the artwork and get a museum tour.
- Explore the connections of Prince George’s as to the history of slavery in the region, from properties where enslaved families lived to a farm where enslaved people once did back-breaking labor.
- Visit the Riversdale House Museum, a National Historic Landmark run by the Riversdale Historical Society, in Riversdale Park. This restored brick home, built in the early 19th century, has been covered in stucco. It was first home to a Belgian aristocrat, and it was later finished by his daughter.
- Deepen your historical knowledge at the Frederick DeMarr Library of County History in Upper Marlboro, run by the Prince George’s County Historical Society. The materials began as a private collection and now houses approximately 6,000 volumes on architecture, military history, historical maps, archival photos, and more.
- Aviation is close to the heart of Prince George’s, and the College Park Aviation Museum is a monument to the connection. The space is dedicated to telling the story of the airport and bringing lessons about science and history into the minds of visitors.
- For a look into more modern history, visit the Prince George’s Hall of Fame in Upper Marlboro. The exhibit highlights the achievements, creativity, and talent of the people of Prince George’s.
- The physical building of the Prince George’s African American Museum & Cultural Center in North Brentwood may be closed to the public, but the organization is still running virtual events. Take a digital museum tour, listen to community members, and watch special events.
- The Marietta House Museum was once a tobacco plantation, and it was the home of generations of the local Duvall family. Gabriel Duvall is a complex figure. He was an attorney who both petitioned against the freedom of his own slaves and fought for the rights of other enslaved people.
- For over 200 years, Fort Washington has sat along the Potomac River. First built to protect the aquatic approach to Washington, D.C., the site joined the National Park Service in 1946 and continues to provide history lessons to visitors.
- Combine human and natural history at the Oxon Cove Park & Oxon Hill Farm. This park shifted from a plantation home in the War of 1812 to a hospital farm, to its current state: a park for all to enjoy. Visit to experience the realities of a farm from the past.
Learn more about the Underground Railroad in Prince George’s.