Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Over 600 Acres Just for Us

A few days ago the weather was in the mid-40sF with a bright warm sun.  We had the early symptoms of cabin fever and with this sun at our back, we decided to explore a historic park that is about an hour from our house. (Click on photos for a closer look.)

It was a winter Sunday and no one was at the gate to take our money.  We crammed $3 into the slot and drove on up to the historic house site.

Plenty of parking and the only other person we saw was a jogger from the outside neighborhood.

It was luxurious being able to explore, even though we missed the tour of the inside of the house.  It had the separate house for a kitchen and the kitchen garden just beyond, as many houses of this era have.

General Smallwood was a loyal soldier and the 4th governor of Maryland when the constitution was ratified.  He came from the elite white Europeans that founded our country.  His parents sent him to Eton for a "proper" education.  

According to Wikipedia:

Smallwood never married. The 1790 census shows that he held 56 slaves and a yearly tobacco crop of 3000 pounds. When he died in 1792 his estate, known as Mattawoman, including his home the Retreat, passed to his sister Eleanor who married Colonel William Grayson of Virginia.

BUT we came for the out of doors and the exploration of the 682-acre park which covers marshland and beaver habitat and deer home.

We took the trail behind the house that took us down the hill to a wet ravine and exploding marshland.  The trees were magnificent and we could only imagine what they had seen.

The low angle of the winter sun gave great definition to the marsh grasses dotted by wet culverts and riverlets.   We did not see much in the way of beaver or bird although we heard a pileated woodpecker, yet we were happy to have this bit of land all to ourselves.  I fell in love along the way.


  1. Anonymous10:32 AM

    Beautiful! I love historic places and like to imagine how they lived. Andrea

  2. I wonder how old that tree is. so nice to be able to wander in the woods.

  3. Yes, the outside is the place to be as far as I am concerned. And you found a magnificent tree to hug.

  4. Trees are so easy to love. In fact, i love the little, struggling ones best.

  5. Being out in the winter woods gives a different look than in summer as it's wide open.

  6. What a great lace to have a wander, especially just the two of you!

  7. Very nice!
    Walking in the woods is soul nuturing.
    I've been reminded the cold then warm weathering can wake bears out of hibernation. Warm they're up and out, and go back to sleep when it gets cold again.

  8. Two great posts of your walk in the woods. The colour is interesting for me as our trees stay green all year round. Well done for braving the cold. At least no crowds.


Glad to hear from you once again. I really like these visits. Come sit on this log and tell me what you are thinking.