“The preservation of America’s Heritage takes many forms.  At Sotterley, it takes the form of a magnificent plantation house, slave dwelling, outbuildings and grounds that for nearly three centuries have been lovingly cared for by those who lived and worked there. Now it is being lovingly cared for by a dedicated staff and hundreds of volunteers to keep the stories alive.  SOtterley represents the very best of historic preservation today and it deserves our support.  It will always have mine.” 

- Richard Moe, President Emeritus, National Trust for Historic Preservation 

Sotterley has come a long way since its ranking as one of the 11 Most Endangered Historic Places in America by the National Trust for Historic Preservation 25 years ago. Thanks to the tireless efforts of our Board, Descendants, Staff, Volunteers and Donors, our beautiful site is not only standing, but thriving.   

Since 1699, Historic Sotterley has been recognized for its preservation efforts and designated a National Historic Landmark, a Middle Passage Ceremonies and Port Markers Project Site, a UNESCO Site of Memory for the Routes of Enslaved People Project and honored with numerous awards such as a Maryland Sustainable Growth Award and two Maryland Preservation Awards.    

In May 2023, Southern Maryland has been recognized as a National Heritage Area (NHA) to further commemorate, conserve and promote important natural, scenic, historic, cultural and recreational resources in St. Mary’s, Calvert, Charles and Prince George’s counties. This designation will help more Americans appreciate and experience all the region has to offer. 

Maintaining such an extensive and historical site is not without its challenges.  Unlike other historic sites which recreate spaces, Sotterley’s expansive manor house, slave cabin, and outbuildings are original and cover several centuries worth of history.   

Preservation isn't limited to the buildings, collections and stories that have survived over the centuries. It is also in the land, the colonial revival gardens that were planted over a century ago and the farming practices we are now revitalizing in our Growing for Good program which is helping to feed the local community. 

At the heart of these efforts is a passion for ensuring that all Sotterley visitors learn and connect with the challenging realities of our history and leave with a respect for the past that will stay with them for years to come.