Jefferson Patterson Park and Museum

Jefferson Patterson Park and Museum

On over 500 acres along the shoreline of the Patuxent River, Jefferson Patterson Park and Museum explores the changing cultures and environment of the Chesapeake Bay region of the past 12,000 years.

Visitors can investigate thousands of years of human history by touring archaeological sites and trails, acres of working farmland, restored farm buildings and museum exhibits, and by attending educational programs. More than 70 archaeological sites have been identified, from the prehistoric period 9,000 years ago through the Colonial period, and including the site of the 1814 Battle of St. Leonard Creek the largest naval engagement in Maryland's history.

Enter Your Location

Related Trip Ideas

Nearby Places

Image Credit: Jefferson Patterson Park and Museum


Park Grounds and Trails

Open all year from 7:30 until dusk except for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day.

Visitor Center

Open 7 days a week from 10 AM - 5:00 PM  through November 5, 2017. Closed on State Holidays, Thanksgiving week and December 19th through January 2nd. Please call 410-586-8501 or email [email protected] for more information.

No fee for admission.

Exhibit Barn

JPPM's Exhibit Barn is open 12:00-4:00 PM, Tuesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday; March 1 through October 31, unless these days fall on a state holiday. You can still see the Exhibit Barn after October through March by emailing or calling ahead to schedule an appointment. 410-586-8501    email: [email protected]

(Note: Many places fill to capacity on busy, nice weather days, especially holiday weekends. Please call ahead or visit the official website to get the most up-to-date information before visiting.)


No admission fee


Educational programs on the historical, cultural, and natural resources of the area; annual events include a War of 1812 Reenactment, Celtic Festival, African American Family Community Day, Children's Day on the Farm, and Native American Technology Day


Some of the fiercest fighting of the War of 1812 took place on and around the grounds of the Jefferson Patterson Park and Museum.

On June 8, 1814, after a skirmish with Com. Joshua Barney’s US Chesapeake Flotilla, the British navy blockaded his “mosquito fleet” of gunboats and barges into the Patuxent River.

The American flotilla withdrew up St. Leonard Creek (a major tributary of the Patuxent) in hopes of outmaneuvering the bigger British ships.

What followed became known as the First Battle and Second Battle of St. Leonard Creek, the largest naval engagement of the war on Maryland waters.

Park land served as a mustering ground for the militia, US Army soldiers and US Marines that came to support the flotilla.

Gun batteries mounted here helped attack the British on June 26, which allowed Barney and his men to leave the creek and sail up the Patuxent.


Last updated: July 06, 2022
Bay Gateways Captain John Smith Chesapeake Trail Find Your Chesapeake Geotour Star Spangled Banner Trail