Eastport

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Eastport is a community of the city of Annapolis, Maryland.

Early History

Per Ellen Moyer:

In the early days of the colony near Annapolis, the Quaker Hill family had a plantation at "Hills Point" outside Annapolis. Dr. Richard Hill, surgeon and botanist was born on the site in 1698. His brother Joseph Hill was born there too in 1705. Father Henry was a merchant and owned 4 ships. Joseph seemed to have worked with his father importing wine and rum and sugar. Joseph acquired a great deal of land near Annapolis and in Baltimore County. When he died in 1761, his 2 children deceased, he left the bulk of his property to his granddaughter, Henrietta Margaret Hill (than 10 years old born in 1751) including Horn's Neck...Eastport.
The peninsula generally housed livestock for families in the town and does not seem to have been planted in tobacco. Citizens of Annapolis town evidently at some point petitioned Joseph to cease and desist raucous behavior...reportedly he rowed across Spa Creek to Horn Point where he would race his horses and shoot his guns. Early on, 250 years ago, the pattern of the proper gentry (ward 1) and more plebeian laid-back personality of Eastporters was set.
Henrietta Hill married Benjamin Ogle in 1770. He is the son of Maryland’s long time Colonial Governor Sam Ogle and Anne Tasker. Belair mansion in Bowie was his estate. Sam Ogle and Ben Tasker are credited with introducing thoroughbred horse-racing, English style, to the Colonies. Ben Ogle would become Maryland 9th Governor 1798-1801 and Henrietta the First Lady. They lived and entertained at their home on King George Street now the USNA Alumni house. But Ben lived his Farm outside of Annapolis...Eastport.
He too raced thoroughbreds and kept some of his horses here. The field where the Harbor House Housing Authority is today was once called "bone crusher" field for the horse bones that used to surface there. When Ben Ogle died he asked to be buried without ceremony on his farm near Annapolis. No one knows where he is buried. Studying the map of old dwellings with Al Luckenbach, archeologist, there appears to be a blacksmith shop in the area on the hill where the Yacht Club sits. You may still see a bumper sticker "where's Ben" when we went in a search with ground scanning radar to find Ben ogles grave on the Yacht Club property. Over time the ground had been disturbed frequently and we still do not know the where about of Ben's grave on his farm near Annapolis. Old timers have told about finding a gravestone in big field when they were hunting, before the days of housing construction in and around HACA.
As the 1800s progressed the Eastport peninsula provided jobs for small industries. In 1885, The Annapolis Glass works on Second Street began utilizing the fine white sand available in the upper Severn. The Brick furnace still stands on Second Street and reportedly tunnels are under the street. Sand was transported by boat from the upper Severn. The owner of the glass works cane from Eastport, Maine and so named our Eastport after his hometown. Employees stayed in housing provided on Jeremy's Way. Before redone by Jerry Parks in the 1960s the Housing did not have indoor plumbing and were quite dilapidated.
After the Civil War Oysters became a popular food. There were 14 oyster houses in the Annapolis area. When the oyster beds in the Severn were depleted In the early 1900s most of them closed. McNasbys at the foot of Second Street on Back Creek survived for 100 years and the last oyster/ crab house on the western shore. The City purchased the property when I was Alderman, Dennis Callahan, Mayor, with the first State open space grant to obtained for urban open space in the State. During the 1980,s oyster buy boats still unloaded truckloads of oysters at City Dock and oyster boats from other places along the Bay frequented Annapolis Harbor, anchored so close you could walk across the Harbor on Boat decks. Employees of McNasby’s stayed In houses that were barges. The first home of the EP History Committee was the Barge House on the AMM property. Small trailers and barges were common sites in the yards of Eastport. For years, Mr. Tuers lived in his barge house on First Street near Eastern Ave.
The Hurricane of 1933 flooded Eastport and washed out the sand spit that enclosed Back Creek as a lake and the road that went along the shore to Bay Ridge a popular resort and steam boat landing at the turn of the century. A RR also followed the route of Bay Ridge Rd crossing the Severn at Wardour and Spa Creek through Truxtun Park to the resort.
Eastport also had a number of docks (Hellers Boat yard) First and Spa Creek that shipped local produce to Baltimore. And reportedly Horn point was the vacationing spot for Annapolitans. There was a bathing Beach and beach house (now apt.) along Horn Pt Drive where Fort Horn once stood protecting the city during the Revolutionary war. The Courts of Horn Point ... I once lived there in the big old house that had once served as an infirmary during a Flue? epidemic.
Chesapeake Harbor was a big field with a house where Key School first began. (need to verify this my memory is fading)
Lewnes Steak House was a corner restaurant. Louie made a big pit of soup. A Highs store was where the Boatyard is now. If someone came fir breakfast Louie Lewnes would go to Highs and buy eggs and Orange juice. Also next to Highs was the Eastport Athletic club. Closed for men only and poker games.
I remember when Watergate apts site was a big farm and Ed Rodowsky had the best ice cream in the pharmacy where the bank is now.