Sotterley Plantation, on the banks of the Patuxent River, is the only remaining Tidewater Plantation in Maryland open to the public. Designated a National Historic Landmark, the site includes the early 18th century Mansion, a rare slave cabin, and a full array of outbuildings on nearly 100 acres of rolling fields, gardens, and riverfront. The authentic 18th and 19th century architecture reveals Chesapeake Bay plantation life in the form of a customs warehouse, smokehouse, corn crib, brick necessary, and plantation schoolhouse. Visitors can also walk along Sotterley's estuarine shoreline, woodland trails, meadows, an antebellum orchard, and colonial revival gardens.
Tuesday - Saturday
10:00 am to 4:00 pm
*Tours: 10:30 am|11:30 am|1 pm|2 pm|3 pm
11:45 am - 4 pm
*Tours: noon | 1 pm | 2 pm | 3 pm
Monday closed to public
Administrative Office open Mon - Fri 9 am - 5 pm
Guided Tour Season May 1 - Oct 31
Self-Guided Grounds Tour: available year-round
(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.)
Guided Mansion with self-guided grounds tours: $10 for adults / $9 for seniors / $6 ages 6-18; and under 6 free
Self-guided grounds tours only: $5 per person
Sotterley provides tours by trained interpreters who guide you through three sites...the Manor House, the Slave Quarters, and the Plantation Landscape. You also can take a self-guided walking tour or stroll the nature trails on site. There are also bird-watching opportunities, family fun activities, and other exhibits.
In 1699 James Bowles purchased 2,000 acres of land on the Patuxent River. The son of a wealthy London tobacco and sugar merchant, James Bowles prospered through trade with England, West Africa, and the Caribbean, dealing in tobacco, lumber, livestock, and slaves. Appointed to the upper houses of Colonial government and Collector of the Upper Potomac, Bowles also earned stipends and helped to regulate and control trade in the region.
Today, Sotterley is the only tidewater plantation in Maryland open to the public that is a testament to all those that lived, died, labored, and resisted here. Designated a National Historic Landmark in 2000, Sotterley is older than Mount Vernon with a history that spans three centuries. A non-profit private charity, Sotterley is governed by a Board of Trustees that has included descendants of former owners and former enslaved, and is supported by fees, grants, memberships, sponsors, and events. The mission of Historic Sotterley, Inc. is to preserve, research, and interpret Sotterley Plantation’s diverse cultures and environments, and to serve as a public educational resource. As part of the Southern Maryland community, Sotterley offers a variety of cultural and educational tours, events, exhibits, and programs for all ages on its beautiful 95 acre site on the shore of the Patuxent River.