Eastport's distinctive history, character and identity grew from maritime roots. The marinas that now serve pleasure boaters were once filled with wooden workboats. So crowded was the shoreline, it was said that an enterprising cat could flit from boat to boat and skirt the entire peninsula without getting its feet wet.
Once a separate town, Eastport was annexed to Annapolis in 1951. Nevertheless, it retains a distinct local flavor and spirit. We invite you to explore Eastport's rich, diverse history through the 14 stops on this self-guided tour.
Text with lower-left photo: The popular yellow flags with the motto "We like it this way" flew first in 1998. To offset the potential loss to businesses from a temporary bridge closure, the community created the mock "Maritime Republic of Eastport" and declared independence from Annapolis.
Human history on Horn Point peninsula goes back thousands of years. Algonquin tribes hunted and fished here, Puritans settled the area, and farmers worked the land.
For much of the colonial era, the Hill family was a major landowner. Indeed, early maps show Back Creek as "Hill's Back Creek." One Hill descendant, Henrietta Margaret, married Benjamin Ogle, who later became Governor of Maryland.
During the Revolutionary War, a fort on Horn Point helped defend Annapolis Harbor from invasion by the British Fleet. A historic plaque across the street tells of Lafayette's encampment in Annapolis.
Text with upper-left photo: Benjamin Ogle, Governor of Maryland from 1798 to 1801, found the pastures of Horn Point ideal for raising some of the state's first racehorses.
Text with main photo: For thousands of years, Algonquin Indians used dugout canoes to harvest fish and oysters on these creeks.
The town of Eastport took shape after the Civil War. In 1868, the land was divided into lots and sold to both black and white families, mainly watermen and workers from the Naval Academy. Maritime industries grew, and by the 1920s, the town was flourishing.
In the latter part of the 20th century, oyster and crab harvests waned and the traditional wooden workboats gave way to modern fiberglass pleasure boats. Eastport's working past gave way to gentrification.
As you tour the Eastport peninsula, you can still see hints of Eastport's past. To discover more, visit the Annapolis Maritime Museum at the Back Creek end of Second Street, or log onto www.AnnapolisMaritimeMuseum.org.
Text with upper left photo: The farmland of the Horn Point peninsula was divided into lots in 1868. Today the streets are numbered in the opposite direction of those on this plat.
Text with main photo: Arnie Gay's Yacht Yard, established after World War II on this site, was one of the first marinas tailored for pleasure boaters rather than workboats.