Home of the St. Mary's County Historical Society
DISCOVER THE PEOPLE, PLACES, AND HISTORY OF
ST. MARY'S COUNTY
The people of St. Mary's County have been making history since the Ark and Dove arrived from England in 1634. Known as Maryland's Mother County, St Mary's County's rich history connects the present with the past.
Its people, beautiful landscapes, and stunning waterways make St. Mary's County truly a special place to visit and to live. Whether you are a long-time resident, someone new to the community, or a visitor eager to explore the past, the St Mary's County Historical Society opens doors to those who have gone before -- to their idealism, their courage, their struggles, and their successes. Doors to the people and events that shaped the County, Maryland, and America.
History matters because of the people who made it.
Wednesday through Friday 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
Wednesday through Friday 11:00 am to 4:00 pm
Second and Fourth Saturdays of the Month - 11:00 am to 4:00 pm
The Legend of Moll Dyer Continues at Tudor Hall
41680 Tudor Place
Leonardtown, MD 20650
The Legend of Moll Dyer
An elderly, single migrant to St Mary’s County, Moll Dyer lived alone in a small cabin just south of Leonardtown. Known to be eccentric—practicing voodoo, casting spells, and indulging in strange practices—Dyer was viewed with suspicion and often fear by County residents. Whenever disease, a bad harvest, or unexpected death occurred, rumors about Moll Dyer would spread. Said by many to be a witch, no one dared to offend her much less muster the courage to confront her, fearful of her anger, wrath, and curses.
During the harsh winter of 1697-1698, disease spread through the County. Once again, Moll Dyer was seen as the cause. With their sorrow and frustration at a boiling point, one cold February night an angry mob descended on her cabin setting it ablaze. Escaping both fire and mob, Dyer fled alone into the woods. Days later she was found dead, frozen hand and knee to a rock.
Removing her body, imprints of her hand and knee remained pressed into the stone. These ghostly impressions are seen as reminders of a eternal curse on those who persecuted her. A curse summoned with Moll Dyer’s dying breath. From that day, it is said that her spirit roams the area where she died - and on the rock - visiting misfortune on all who venture too close.