The Nailor Connection: Descendant of Maryland 400 Veterans to Visit

On Wednesday, June 19, Debra Naylor, a descendant of Maryland 400 veterans Alexander and Nicholas Nailor, and one of her co-authors Frank Robinson will be visiting the Maryland State Archives at noon to discuss their book The Naylors of Woodborough. This book is a collection of research of the local family’s 350-year history that now serves as the primary source for Naylor information in America. One of Debra Naylor’s ancestors is a soldier that I spent the better part of a year working on – Alexander Nailor. [1]
Continue reading

Posted in Maryland 400 | 2 Comments

James’s Introduction


My name is James Schmitt and I am a recent graduate from St. Mary’s College of Maryland. I am interning with the Maryland State Archives throughout summer 2019. I will specifically be working on the Finding the Maryland 400 project as a Maryland Society Sons of the American Revolution Research Fellow.

Continue reading

Posted in Maryland 400 | 6 Comments

Jillian’s Introduction


My name is Jillian Curran and I am an intern on the Maryland 400 Project for this summer. I am originally from Kennett Square, Pennsylvania and am now a rising sophomore at Washington College, where I major in history. At school, I am involved with the Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience. I have worked on both the Chesapeake Heartland Project, which researches the experiences of African-Americans on the Eastern Shore, and the World War II National Home Front Project, which collects oral histories of those who lived during the conflict. I hope to continue my historical studies and one day become a museum curator or professor.

For as long as I can remember, the past has always fascinated me.

Continue reading

Posted in Maryland 400 | 11 Comments

Maryland’s Senate Honors the Maryland 400

On March 7, the Maryland Senate unanimously passed a resolution honoring the First Maryland Regiment for its heroic and dedicated service during the Revolutionary War. Continue reading

Posted in Maryland 400

Happy Birthday Mordecai Gist

Although we formally celebrated the life of George Washington on President’s Day, which was on Monday, his actual birthday is today, February 22. Closer to home, today is also the birthday of Mordecai Gist, the distinguished soldier and Revolutionary leader who lead the Marylanders at the Battle of Brooklyn.

Mordecai Gist (1742/43-1792) Peter Egeli (b. 1934), after Charles Willson Peale (1741-1827), 1975 MSA SC 1545-1066

Continue reading

Posted in Maryland 400

“The Ides of January:” Facing the New Year in the Continental Army

The end of the year was often an anxious time for the leaders of the Continental Army. As the end of 1780 approached, General “Mad” Anthony Wayne spoke for many when he wrote “I sincerely wish the Ides of January was come & past.”

The cause of Wayne’s “disagreeable ideas about that period” was that the soldiers’ enlistments often expired at the end of December, and there were few guarantees that they would reenlist or that they would be replaced soon—or at all. At the end of 1776, when the Continental Army had seen just one victory, at Trenton on December 26, and many months of defeat, a great many soldiers walked away when their terms ended on December 31. Continue reading

Posted in Maryland 400

The amazing story of Charles Thompson, who “agreed to enlist with the Enemy–and by that Means made his escape”

The life and career of Charles Thompson is perhaps the most remarkable that we have come across in all of our biographical research for this project. Thompson showed immense courage and determination during his time in the army. In addition, piecing together the facts about his life was possible only with the assistance of some amazing partners. We’re very fortunate that we were able to work with them to bring Thompson’s story to you. Continue reading

Posted in Maryland 400 | Tagged

Cassy’s Introduction


My name is Cassy Sottile and I am a junior at Washington College in Chestertown, Maryland. This fall, I will be writing biographies for the Maryland 400 project.

I am currently double majoring in English and history, with a double minor in journalism and theatre. During the academic year, I am the news editor for our college newspaper The Elm, stage manage for the theatre department, tutor history and academic skills at our campus tutoring center, and participate in the Peer Mentor program.  I am from Frederick, Maryland, though most of my family is originally from New York. Continue reading

Posted in Maryland 400 | 3 Comments

The Maryland Line: Why They Fought

Today on Veteran’s Day, we take a moment to consider Maryland’s Revolutionary War veterans. Our work has always centered on the soldiers themselves–before, during, and after their time in the army–rather than the battles and political events of the American Revolution. However, we have not talked very much about one key element of these soldiers’ experiences: their motivations for enlisting.

Private of the 1st Maryland Regiment, c. 1777. Don Troiani/NPS.

Continue reading

Posted in Maryland 400 | 2 Comments

Project Updates

We are proud to announce that recently we published our 700th biography! Lucky number 700 was Private Francis Shepard of the First Company; he survived the Battle of Brooklyn and the rest of the 1776 campaign, reenlisted and served until 1781, eventually rising to the rank of captain!

Since, there were almost 1,000 Marylanders at the Battle of Brooklyn, and we know the names of about 850, we have just over 150 biographies remaining. It’s a lot of work to be sure, but we’re excited that the end is in sight!

It’s taken contributions from a lot of people to get to this point, and we wouldn’t be here without the hard work of Jeff Truitt, Daniel Blattau, Emily Huebner, Taira Sullivan, Sean Baker, Josh Rifkin, Nick Couto, Burkely Hermann, Taylor Blades, Natalie Miller, and Elizabeth Cassibry!

We are also very grateful to the Maryland SAR for their continued support, which has allowed us to keep this project running for so long–more than five years!

We have one other project announcement. Staff Researcher and Maryland SAR Research Fellow Natalie Miller will be leaving us soon. Natalie has made many wonderful and valuable contributions in her time with the project, including over 160 biographies–almost 25 percent of everything we’ve done! We will miss her, but wish her good luck as she moves on. We know that she will go on to great successes.

As always, if you would like to make a contribution to the project, you can do so through the Friends of the Maryland State Archives; list “Maryland 400” under Additional Comments. Thank you!


Posted in Maryland 400 | 2 Comments