The Kent Island Heritage Society

The Kent Island Heritage Society was founded in 1975 for the purpose of discovering, identifying, restoring and preserving the heritage of Kent Island in Maryland. It works diligently to facilitate the processes by which both its youth and mature history enthusiasts can acquire an appreciation of Kent Island's place in the history of Maryland and of our nation.

Parade
Christ Church and Rectory
Historic Stevensville Bank
Old Stevensville Post Office
Cray House

Latest News!

Breaking!!

Because of the predicted bad weather tomorrow, Artoberfest has been postponed until October 8th. Our downtown historic sites will NOT be open. Historic Christ Church and the Kirwan house and store WILL be open 12-4 pm.

Attention!

Storm closing and cancellation.

Kirwan House General Store

Newly painted roof!

Christ Church and Rectory

Food and Friendship!

Old Fashioned Picnic is a Resounding Success!

 

Kent Island Heritage Society Members and their Guests enjoyed beautiful weather at The Kirwan House and Farm Sunday, September 25, 2022, 1:00 to 5:00 p.m.  

There was plenty of homemade food, homemade ice cream, great company, old friends and new faces, hayrides, rock painting, feed the chickens, a Kirwan House Tour, guess the weight of the pumpkin contest, music by Monique and Mike Thomas, invocation by Doug Bishop, and guess the gadget contest!  Thankfully the rain held off and we were able to have a great picnic, the first in 4 years!  See you next year!

We Want Need You!

 

We need you!

We want you!

 

As we celebrate the success of our wonderful Kent Island Day in May, the fascinating presentation in June on our Underground Railroad Network to Freedom site here on Kent Island, and the opening of Historic Sites for “First Saturdays”, one fact is glaringly apparent. We have too few good folks doing too many good things in support of our mission. We are in reasonably good shape financially, but we need more direct personal involvement from our members.

Read More Here

The 2022 Kent Island Heritage Society Scholarship

 

Noah Wigglesworth, Kent Island Heritage Society 2022 Scholarship Winner!

 

Each year The Kent Island Heritage Society offers a one-year scholarship to a graduating senior from Kent Island High School who plans to attend college. To be eligible, the applicant must have a 3.0 GPA or higher and have performed community service. This year the scholarship was awarded to Noah Wigglesworth.  As part of his winning essay he wrote, “It is essential to work to preserve our beautiful community simply because those in the future should be able to experience what we have today.”  Congratulations Noah!   Noah is attending the University of Maryland to study Aerospace Engineering.  You can read his essay in our latest newsletter HERE.

Kent Island Stoopley-Gibson Manor and the Henry Massey Escape Site

The Kent Island Heritage Society hosted a presentation on the history of the Stoopley-Gibson Manor property on today’s Gibson’s Grant and its designation as a site on the National Park Service (NPS) Network to Freedom Underground Railroad Trail on June 14, 2002 at the Historic Christ Church in Stevensville.

KIHS member Andrew Costello detailed the history of the Stoopley- Gibson property (also known as White’s Heritage) from its land grant of 150 acres to John Gibson and Henry Stoop in 1656 through today’s Gibson’s Grant.

He was joined by Matthew LaRoche from the University of Maryland whose research resulted in the National Park Service designation of the enslaved Henry Massey Escape Site at Stoopley-Gibson Manor.

Stoopley-Gibson House

The Stoopley-Gibson Manor in its original state

There are two presentations you can view:

PowerPoint with Audio and Picture-in-Picture.

Full-length Video with opening and closing remarks and a brief question and answer session with the presenters.

 

 

Kent Island Day 2022 was a resounding success!

Thanks to our sponsors, the community, vendors and exhibitors, and most of all our hard working volunteers Kent Island Day 2022 will go down in history as one of the best!  After two years of cancellations due to the Covid-19 pandemic everyone was eager to return to normalcy and it showed with large crowds, fantastic musical entertainment, great food, wonderful history and heritage exhibits, and a wide range of vendors and exhibitors to capture the attention of the whole family.  In spite of the record heat everyone enjoyed a day focused on history and heritage of Kent Island which was established in 1631.

 

Visitors crowd Love Point Road

 

Thanks to our sponsors:

William Claiborne Level:  Kent Island American legion #278

Isle of Kent Level:  I Love Kent Island

DonorRobert W Timms, Sr

Patrons:  Please select the link below to see the huge list of Kent Island Day 2022 patrons - there are many!  Thank you to everyone that supports our vision to discover, identify, restore, and preserve the heritage of Kent Island!

Vendors and Exhibitors: Thank you, thank you, thank you!  Without your support Kent Island Day 2022 would not have been the overwhelming success that it was!

The iconic celebration of heritage, life, and culture of Kent Island, sponsored and organized by the Kent Island Heritage Society, takes place annually on the third Saturday in May. The celebration itself is part of Kent Island’s history. It was established in 1977 by State Proclamation signed by Lt. Gov. Blair Lee. Kent Island Day takes place in Historic Stevensville featuring vendors and artisans, kids' activities, local food, entertainment, historic displays, artifacts, reenactors, and open historic sites. It also features a large parade through town. It is a family event that attracts over 2,000 visitors for the daylong activities.

For more information click HERE


Historic Sites Opened the First Saturday beginning in May

Kirwan House General Store

It was a rainy start to our First Saturdays but some braved the elements to visit our sites including a family from California!  Thanks for visiting us!



Kent Island Heritage Society stands up for Historic Preservation

 

Stevensville High School

The first graduating class of Stevensville High School on Kent Island

 

President Jack Broderick makes an impassioned plea to the Queen Anne's County Commissioners to support county-wide historic preservation during a hearing on the abandonment of the Historic Centreville High School for a proposed new building.  Listen to his short (3 minute) speech HERE and while you are at it subscribe to the QAC YouTube Channel to keep up with the latest news in QAC!


Hidden Gems In Historic Stevensville

Stevensville RR Station

WMAR video highlights the Train Depot.  Click here to watch! Learn more about our train station and the railroad on Kent Island HERE.


Why the building of a third span across the Chesapeake Bay is "A Clear Threat to the Heritage of Kent island!"

 

Chesapeake Bay Bridge

Bay Bridge

Listen in as Kent Island Heritage Society President Jack Broderick joins Harold Wilson on the Delmarva Today podcast to discuss plans to build a new additional span connecting Kent Island to the heavily travelled 50/301 corridor.   The Kent Island Heritage Society considers such a project a direct threat to the heritage of Kent Island, the first European settlement in what is now Maryland.  During the podcast President Broderick explains how the past is connected to the future of Kent Island and how a third span threatens the island's heritage.

Listen HERE

bay bridge alternatives MDTA.png

Follow-up interview on Delmarva Today with President Jack Broderick regarding the Tier 2 study of the Chesapeake Bay crossing which threatens Kent Island, its heritage and culture, and leaves many questions unanswered.

Listen HERE


Kent Island Heritage Society docents.

 


The History of the Isle of Kent (Kent Island)

 

 

Senator Kirwan hods photo of Love Point Hotel

The Grand Old Man of Kent Island

Senator Kirwan explains the history of Kent Island.

Learn about the early settlement of Kent Island in 1631 by William Claiborne and why it is not considered the first English settlement in Maryland even though it is the fourth oldest permanent English settlement in the United States, after Jamestown, Virginia (1607), Hampton, Virginia (1609–10), and Plymouth, Massachusetts (1620).  Discover the conflicts that have shaped the history and culture of the island:  beaver pelts, oysters, mosquitos, wars, bombing ranges, and more by clicking the link below!

Kent Island Heritage Society Presentation


Did You Ever Wonder What Kent Island Used to Look Like?

View what Kent Island used to look like from the present all the way back to 1937.  You'll be amazed!  You can even compare two years side by side!  Link here.

Historic Aerial Photo of Kent Island


Zoom to History!

The Kent island Heritage Society is planning in person presentations again and we are are able to Zoom some of the presentations.  Please stay tuned for updates! The Heritage Society has various historical Kent Island presentations available for your school, local organizations, or groups.

Click the link below to read summaries of the historical presentations or download the brochure:

Historical Presentations

Please allow a month's notice and, if possible, we will provide a speaker from the Heritage Society for that interactive session.

Each presentation runs forty-five minutes to an hour.

The Society works diligently to assist our youth and mature history enthusiasts to acquire an appreciation of Kent Island's place in the history of our state and nation.


Blast from the Past!

Enjoy this video from 2012 starring our Nancy Cook (Queen Anne's County Historic Sites Chair) and Linda Collier (curator of the Kirwan House General Store and Museum). Two Minutes of History


Bay Point Wealth
A Little Farm Nursery
Four Seasons at Kent Island
Chesapeake Light Tackle
Harris Marine Financing
Kentmorr Marina Properties, LLC
Lundberg Builders
Rosendale Realty

Interesting in supporting our efforts through membership or donations?  GO HERE!


Due to Covid our annual induction of officers and new board members occured telephonically.  See our latest NEWSLETTERS for updated information.

Swearing in of new officers and board members

New Board Members and Officers are sworn in at the annual brunch and business meeting.

 

From left to right:  Seated in foreground Lynne Riley-Coleman, Treasurer; Nancy Cook, Recording Secretary; Robert Lowe, Vice President; Lynnda Kratovil, officiant; Jack Broderick, President; Carol Frederick, Corresponding Secretary; Louis Crouch, new Board Member; Linda Moore, new Board Member; Leslie Moore, new Board Member; and Kristin Green, new Board Member.  Welcome new Board Members! We look forward to your contributions as we work to promote the heritage of Kent Island.



TAX DEDUCTIBLE DONATIONS

The Kent Island Heritage Society, Inc. is a private, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization; donations to which are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law - if the Kent Island Heritage Society has provided no goods or services to the donor in exchange for these donations

Use this link to join or make a donation.


AmazonSmile!Amazon Smile

Do you shop on Amazon.com?  Did you know you can link your AmazonSmile purchases to to your favorite registered charity or non-profit organization?  The Kent Island Heritage Society Inc. is registered.  Simply type in The Kent Island Heritage Society Inc into the search box for ALL  Charities and select it!

AmazonSmile is a website operated by Amazon with the same products, prices, and shopping features as Amazon.com. The difference is that when you shop on AmazonSmile, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price of eligible products to the charitable organization of your choice.


Clio: Your Guide to History and Culture

Besides your PC you can use a mobile device (smartphone or tablet) to access Clio on the go!  Clio is your guide to the history and culture around you.  There are 31,448 historical entries from all across the country. You can now access information about the Kirwan House, General Store, and Museum on your mobile device!  We will be adding other sites in the near future and a walking tour.
Besides text and text to speech, Clio offers Google maps, Streetview, Photos, and more!  Give it a try!  It is available for Android and Apple platforms.  It's FREE!!

 


StevensvilleTrain Station and Caboose

Historic Stevensville Train Station and Caboose adjacent to the Cray House and Stevensville Bank.

*Please refer to our latest announcements at the top of the page.


We Need Volunteers!!

 

The Kirwan House and Museum

The Kirwan House, headquarters for the Kent Island Heritage Society

 

Kirwan House and Museum

There are always little jobs that need doing at our historic sites. If you are so inclined and have a little free time, please contact us. Repair a window pane, water some flowers, paint a chair, rake, wash a window, feed the fish, help out with the fish pond, etc, etc., etc., One time or sometimes, your help is needed.  Contact Robert Lowe at kent.island.heritage.society@gmail.com or speak to any Kent Island Heritage Society Board Member.  We are grateful for any help you can offer!  Thanks!


 

JOIN THE KENT ISLAND HERITAGE SOCIETY!

 

Nancy Cook displays period artifacts at the Cray House

Nancy Cook, holding a clay pipe, discusses items used by early inhabitants of Kent Island.

Nancy Cook at Cray House Stevensville MD

We are always interested in having individuals, both young and mature, join the Kent Island Heritage Society.   There are many benefits to being a member including the opportunity to learn more about our Kent Island Heritage and support our ongoing activities to preserve the rich history of Maryland's earliest European settlement!  Join, you'll be glad you did!  For more information go to the Membership/Donate page or contact John L. Conley at 703 216 0449 or jconcomm@gmail.com.

Kirwan House General Store Sign
Kirwan House General Store
Fall Picnic
Fall Picnic
Making cider!
Photo Time!
Haystack
Food and Friendship!
Food and Friendship!
Fall Picnic
Pressing cider
Haystack
Photo Time!
Fall Picnic
Fall Picnic
Kirwan House General Store
Kirwan House General Store Sign