The route today to St. Mary’s City, Maryland, is from the north. It snakes through sprawling suburbs, down Maryland’s western peninsula, and leaves behind the power centers of Washington, Baltimore, and Annapolis.
This is not how people in the seventeenth century approached Maryland’s first capital. Then they came by boat, up the Chesapeake to the Potomac, where they diverted inland to the St. Mary’s River. On its banks in 1634,...
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