Mount Pleasant, Maryland (historic site)

Mount Pleasant, Maryland (historic site)

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name = Mount Pleasant
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location = Upper Marlboro, Maryland
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built = c. 1750
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added = 11/29/1972
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Mount Pleasant is 2 1/2-story brick structure with a gambrel roof, Mount Pleasant is about two thirds its original length. The eastern section, east of the central hallway, was later removed; the present doorway would originally have been the center bay of a five-bay facade. The house is built of brick laid in Flemish bond with occasional glazed headers, and sits on a high, three-foot, common-bond brick base. The building has twin flush chimneys with two flues in each chimney on the west end. There is a 4/4 pent window between the chimneys, high in the loft. The principal entrance is in the (now) easternmost bay of the south facade. This doorway, flanked by pilasters and surmounted by a fanlight, was covered by a hip-roofed one-bay porch supported by square columns until the third quarter of the 20th century. The north facade also holds a door in the eastern bay, but this is a replacement with a modern colonial-style surround. The remaining two bays of each facade hold 9/9 sash windows. Two 9/6 sash gable-roofed dormer windows pierce either side of the roof. Windows are surmounted by tall splayed jack arches, 1 1/2 bricks in height, with segmental arched bottoms. The east and west gambrel ends have been stuccoed since 1945 to prevent deterioration. A 1936 photo reveals the west facade to be three bays wide, with narrow 4/4 sash windows in each bay of the first floor, and the outer bays of the second floor, in addition to the small pent window in the attic. All windows have the same distinctive tall brick arches. Since the photo, the northernmost window of this facade has been removed and replaced by a French door allowing access to a new patio.


Mount Pleasant was patented in 1697 to Richard Marsham, whose wife Anne was the daughter of Leonard Calvert, Governor of Maryland. Their grandson, Marsham Waring, inherited the home from his grandfather in 1713. His son, Richard Marsham Waring, had four sons, of whom only one, John, born in 1737, survived and left issue. He inherited Mount Pleasant, and c. 1750, built the standing house. He died in 1813 and was buried at Mount Pleasant. His son, John Jr., married Elizabeth Margaret Bowie, second daughter of Maryland Governor Robert Bowie. Henry, John Sr.'s younger son, inherited Mount Pleasant from his father. He served as a major in the 34th Regiment in the War of 1812. In 1814, he was promoted to Lieutenant Commander and was commissioned Colonel of the Infantry, 34th Regiment, in 1817. He married Sarah Contee Harrison, daughter of John Harrison and Catherine Contee, in 1802. Catherine Contee's sister Jane had married John Hanson in 1747. Hanson was elected President of the Continental Congress in 1781, and in 1782, he became the first President of the United States under the Articles of Confederation. Mount Pleasant is an example of an almost distinctively Maryland style of house--the English gambrel roof dwelling in brick, with the steep gambrel which has dormers almost flush with the second pitch of the roof. This house is significant primarily for its architecture and as a representative example of a more modest type of mid-Georgian dwelling than others in Maryland such as Montpelier, and probably a closer reflection of the architectural ancestry than the Palladian country house. As a more modest dwelling Mount Pleasant is an unusual survivor.

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