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Eltonhead Manor and Habre de Venture correspondence collection

Identifier: MS 2237


This collection contains correspondence related to the acquisition by the Baltimore Museum of Art of the wood paneling from two Maryland houses--Eltonhead Manor in Calvert County and Habre de Venture in Charles County.


  • 1925-1935


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research use.

Conditions Governing Use

The reproduction of materials in this collection may be subject to copyright restrictions. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine and satisfy copyright clearances or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections. For more information visit the MCHC’s Rights and Permissions page.

Historical Note

Rooms from Eltonhead Manor and Habre de Venture were acquired by the Baltimore Museum of Art in 1925 and 1935, respectively. Wood paneling was taken from both historic properties to recreate architectural interiors for display at the art museum.

Eltonhead Manor, located in Calvert County, Maryland, was built during the mid to late 1600s. The land known as “Great Eltonhead” was surveyed in 1652 for Edward Eltonhead. The tract, comprised of over 5,000 acres, extended from Cove Point Marsh to Drum Point. Samuel Groome acquired the land and house in 1662 or 1664. The manor once again changed hands and became the property of the Bourne family.

The Bourne family sold off acres of the land, so the ownership of the manor house over the years became unclear. A Dr. Wyville may have owned the home during the Revolutionary War but sold it after the death of his son. In 1910, Hamilton Owens purchased the home from Mr. and Mrs. James Locke Weems. By 1925, the house was in ruins, so the Owens donated the wood paneling and staircase to the Baltimore Museum of Art.

Habre de Venture was the home of Thomas Stone, a signer of the Declaration of Independence. The house is located in Charles County, Maryland on Rose Hill Road in Port Tobacco. Stone purchased the land in 1770 and began construction on the home in 1771. Stone died in 1787, but the home remained in the family until 1936. The Baltimore Museum of Art purchased the wood paneling from the home the previous year. The house was privately owned until it was gutted by a fire in 1977. Habre de Venture was designated a National Historic Site, and the National Park Service purchased the house and surrounding land in 1981. The Park Service renovated the property and it was opened to the public in 1997.


0.4 Linear Feet (1 box )

Language of Materials



The collection is organized chronologically.

Scope and Contents

The collection contains correspondence related to the acquisitions of the wood paneling from Eltonhead Manor and Habre de Venture for the Baltimore Museum of Art. The letters discuss history and ownership of the homes in Calvert and Charles Counties, as well as negotiations on price to purchase the paneling. William B. Marye conducted most of the research.

Guide to the Eltonhead Manor and Habre de Venture correspondence collection
Under Revision
Lara Westwood
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Revision Statements

  • 2020-01-30: Manually entered into ArchivesSpace by Sandra Glascock.

Repository Details

Part of the H. Furlong Baldwin Library Repository

H. Furlong Baldwin Library
Maryland Center for History and Culture
610 Park Avenue
Baltimore MD 21201 United States