Farmstead virtual tour

Brown Family Farmhouse

The history of this land prior to the Brown family includes records of Susquehannock and Piscataway Native American tribes. There is also evidence of an Algonquin Indian site either in or near Woodstock and an important Indian trail that crossed the Patapsco River in Woodstock. Both tribes were proficient farmers, hunters and gatherers and lived in wigwams in seasonal villages. 

In 1692, the Governors of Anne Arundel County commissioned Thomas Brown to serve as a Patuxent Ranger. He was given a land grant in 1703 for the 415-acre Ranter’s Ridge, a portion of which exists today as Mt. Pleasant. Samuel Brown (1810-1880) acquired the acreage to create Mt. Pleasant’s 232 acres as we know the land today. Although records are limited, there is evidence enslaved people lived at Mt. Pleasant in the 1800s. The 1850 Federal Slave Census shows Samuel Brown’s wife, Elizabeth, enslaved 14 people.

The Brown family farmhouse is a journey through time, and each addition shows building materials and designs relevant to various periods throughout its history. Built circa 1775, the Brown family constructed a one-room log cabin with hand-hewn logs harvested from the surrounding property. This log portion of the farmhouse is located in the lower mid-section and currently serves as a living room. A log-viewing window on the west side exterior of the house allows visitors to see the logs that still remain under the siding. Inside this portion, evidence suggests there was a fireplace and hearth on the north side of the cabin.

In the early 1800s, logs were also used to add a second story to the log cabin, adding a bedroom along with a rear wing off the north side that served as a kitchen. The front southern portion of the farmhouse was built in 1865, adding a parlor and two bedrooms. A hallway was created to connect the front addition to the rear log cabin. In the early 1900s, a small utility room with a second-story storage area was added to the west side of the 1865 addition. The rear wing of the farmhouse was removed and rebuilt in the 1950s. Running water and plumbing were added to the house at that time.

When standing on the front porch, you will see a stone in the garden bed near the southwest corner of the porch. This stone was the original property marker denoting a northern boundary. The stone has initials and a date carved into it as was typical of property boundaries in that time period. The visible carving reads 1800 EB (Eli Brown). In order to preserve this artifact, it was moved to the current location and a sign was left in its original location along the Conservancy’s current northern boundary.

Orbit View

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