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St. Clements Island State Park

St. Clements Island State Park

St. Clements Island is located in the Potomac River, off the shore of St. Mary's County and is only accessible by boat.

The 62 acre park contains a memorial cross dedicated to the memory of the first Marylanders. Boat tours are offered on a weekend schedule by St. Clement's Island Museum to historic St. Clement's Island.

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Image Credit: Stephen Schatz / Maryland DNR Flickr

Hours

Sunrise to Sunset 

Park is accesible only by boat.

Certain activities are permitted outside of the regular park hours (e.g. fishing, boat launch, hunting where permitted). Please check with the park before your visit if you plan to engage in an activity which requires you to be in the park before or after the posted hours.

(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.)

Fees

No fees

Activities

  • Fishing
  • Hiking trails
  • Hunting
  • Picnicking

History

On March 25, 1634, the first English settlers under the Baltimore proprietorship sailed to St. Clement's Island on the Ark and the Dove.

Since those earliest days, St. Clement’s Island lay witness from its vantage point, swept by wind, storms, and tide, to many evolutions. The colonial years saw plantations spring up along the river shores producing an infant tobacco industry and the promise of wealth. From those infant years to well into the 20th, it would inherit the name of Blackistone Island, as signature to more than 200 years of ownership by the Blackistone family. The Blackistone Lighthouse, built in 1851 by master lighthouse builder John Donahoo, stood on the south end of the island serving Potomac River mariners until it was decommissioned in 1932. The vacant lighthouse was burned by vandals in 1956 and forever lost as an important monument to Potomac River heritage.

In 1934, to celebrate Maryland’s 300th birthday, Governor Albert Ritchie, dedicated a 40- foot commemorative cross recognizing this site as the location where religious toleration in America had its foundation. It stands tall today and welcomes all with the same tribute to the brave colonists who risked their lives to seek an ideal America cherishes today.

Weather

Last updated: January 23, 2020
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