In The 17th century, the colony of Maryland was founded as a refuge for Catholics and members of other religious faiths then subject to persecution. Many of the early settlers of this region, then a part of Maryland, were Presbyterians who had been denied their freedom of worship.
For many years local Presbyterians were forced to travel a great distance to the nearest church. In 1763, a congregation was organized in this area by Reverend Charles Tennent, the charismatic son of William Tennent, founder of Princeton University. Services were held in the homes of members until 1767 when the present Blackwater Presbyterian Church was constructed. Over time the travel conditions faced by many members resulted in the formation of separate churches in the growing communities of Ocean View and Frankford. By the late 19th century regular services at Blackwater had been discontinued. Occasional meetings were held until 1921, when the church organization was formally abolished. Since 1949 the property has been managed by a Trust established by the Tunnell family, who have been active supporters of the church since its founding. Blackwater Presbyterian Church was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1976.