St. Mary's County, Maryland Genealogy

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United States RTENOTITLE  Maryland RTENOTITLE  St. Mary's County
MD St Mary's map.png

County Courthouse

Template:RAOGKcourthouse St. Mary's County Government
23115 Leonard Hall Dr.
Leonardtown, MD 20650


Michaelangelos Pieta.jpg

The county is named after The Virgin Mary. It was the "first county named in a colony intended to be a haven for Catholics."[1]

The settlement of Lord Baltimore's Maryland began with the arrival of passengers from England at St. Clement's Island in the Potomac River in what is now southwestern St. Mary's County on March 25, 1634 (the anniversary of this landing being annually celebrated as Maryland Day). The passengers arrived in two vessels, the Ark and the Dove, which had set sail from the Isle of Wight on November 22, 1633. The county is also home to the first Catholic Mass celebrated in the original thirteen colonies.[2]

Parent County

  • Created 24 January 1637 from the Colonial lands

Variant Spellings

  • Saint Mary's[3]

Boundary Changes

Record Loss

  • Lost census: 1890


Populated Places

Census Districts

Neighboring Counties

Calvert | Charles |Dorchester| Somerset| Virginia Counties: Northumberland| Westmoreland



  • All Faith Cemetery
  • All Saints Cemetery
  • Charles Memorial Gardens
  • Christ Church Cemetery
  • Ebenezer Cemetery
  • Evergreen Memorial Gardens
  • Galilee Cemetery
  • Holy Face Cemetery
  • John Wesley Cemetery
  • Joy Chapel Cemetery
  • Mount Zion Cemetery [4]
  • New Saint Aloysius Cemetery
  • Old Saint Aloysius Cemetery
  • Old Saint Josephs Cemetery
  • Our Lady's Chapel Cemetery[5]
  • Point Lookout Confederate Cemetery
  • Queen of Peace Cemetery
  • Saint Andrews Cemetery
  • Saint Francis Xavier Cemetery
  • Saint Georges Cemetery
  • Saint Georges Cemetery [6]
  • Saint Johns Cemetery
  • Saint Josephs Cemetery
  • Saint Michael Cemetery
  • Saint Nicholas Cemetery
  • Saint Paul's Cemetery


Federal Census reports available 1790-1930, including slave and veterans schedules. Exception-1830 census is missing.


Maryland State Archives' Guide to Maryland Religious Institutions identifies all churches known to have existed in St. Mary's County, Maryland. It covers all denominations and includes record descriptions.


Family Histories

It is anticipated that this bibliography will eventually identify all known family histories published about residents of this county. Use this list to:

  • Locate publications about direct ancestors
  • Find the most updated accounts of an ancestor's family
  • Identify publications, to quote Elizabeth Shown Mills, about an ancestor's "FAN Club" [Friends, Associates, and Neighbors]

For ancestors who lived in St. Mary's County in the 1600s, a Harvard graduate has probably studied your family. See Dr. Lois Green Carr's Biographical Files of 17th and 18th Century Marylanders (courtesy: Maryland State Archives).

  • [Butler] See de Hinojosa.
  • [Carvile] See de Hinojosa.
  • [Chilton] Dorman, John Frederick. "The Chilton Families of Virginia and Maryland," The Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 11, No. 2 (Apr.-Jun. 1967):71-78; Vol. 11, No. 3 (Jul.-Sep. 1967):121-125; Vol. 11, No. 4 (Oct.-Dec. 1967):167-174; Vol. 12, No. 1 (Jan.-Mar. 1968):15-18; Vol. 12, No. 2 (Apr.-Jun. 1968):83-86; Vol. 12, No. 3 (Jul.-Sep. 1968):109-113; Vol. 12, No. 4 (Oct.-Dec. 1968):169-175; Vol. 13, No. 1 (Jan.-Mar. 1969):32-36; Vol. 13, No. 2 (Apr.-Jun. 1969):65-71; Vol. 13, No. 4 (Oct.-Dec. 1969):177-180; Vol. 14, No. 1 (Jan.-Mar. 1970):15-22; Vol. 14, No. 2 (Apr.-Jun. 1970):75-82; Vol. 14, No. 3 (Jul.-Sep. 1970):123-128; Vol. 14, No. 4 (Oct.-Dec. 1970):165-168; Vol. 15, No. 1 (Jan.-Mar. 1971):32-41; Vol. 15, No. 2 (Apr.-Jun. 1971):122-124; Vol. 15, No. 4 (Oct.-Dec. 1971):259-264; Vol. 16, No. 4 (Oct.-Dec. 1972):301-306; FHL Book 975.5 B2vg v. 11-v. 16; digital version at American Ancestors ($).
  • [DeButts] Russell, George Ely. "DeButts Family of Maryland and Virginia," The Genealogist, Vol. 12, No. 2 (Fall 1998):131-188.
  • [Decosta] Russell, George Ely. "Portuguese and Spanish Colonists in Seventeenth-Century Maryland," The American Genealogist, Vol. 76, No. 1 (January 2001):50-60.
  • [D'Hiniossa] Hoffman, William J. "Alexander D'Hiniossa, The Last Dutch Director on the Delaware," The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record, Vol. 73, No. 4 (Oct. 1942):246-250. Digital version at New York Family History ($); FHL Book 974.7 B2n v. 73.
  • [de Hinojosa] Hoff, Henry B. "Alexander de Hinojosa and His Descendants in Maryland," The American Genealogist, Vol. 79, No. 4 (Oct. 2004):260-273.
  • [Ellyson] Wagner, Douglas W. Ellyson. "The Early Generations of the Ellyson Family," The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. 72, No. 1. Reprint: FHL Book 929.273 A1 no. 6718.
  • [Gerard] Weis, Frederick Lewis and Walter Lee Sheppard. Ancestral Roots of Certain American Colonists Who Came to America before 1700. Baltimore, Md.: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1992. FHL Book 974 D2w 1992.
  • [Guyther] See de Hinojosa.
  • [Leigh] Hoff, Henry B. "Alexander de Hinojosa and His Descendants in Maryland," The American Genealogist, Vol. 79, No. 4 (Oct. 2004):260-273.
  • [Norris] Diller, Corinne Hanna. "Johns and Thomases: Using Named Farmland to Sort Identities among Norrises of St. Mary's County, Maryland," National Genealogical Society Quarterly, Vol. 86, No. 4 (December 1998):271-282. FHL Collection 973 B2ng v. 86 (1998)



The New Early Settlers of Maryland database is a great place to start searching for immigrants who had arrived in the colony by the 1680s. The database "comprises 34,326 entries from Gust Skordas' Early Settlers of Maryland and Carson Gibb's Supplement to the Early Settlers of Maryland." Available online, courtesy: Maryland State Archives.

Other St. Mary's County immigration resources include:


Through a Joint eGovernment Service of the Maryland Judiciary and the Maryland State Archives, free images and indexes of the complete series of St. Mary's County Deed Books (1781-present) have been uploaded to their website: MDLandRec.Net: A Digital Image Retrieval System for Land Records in Maryland. (Requires free registration.)

Local Histories



Revolutionary War
  • A Census of Pensioners for Revolutionary or Military Services: With their Names, Ages, and Places of Residence, as Returned by the Marshalls of the Several Judicial Districts, Under the Act for Taking the Sixth Census]. 1841. Digital version at Google Books. 1967 reprint: FHL Collection 973 X2pc 1840. [See Maryland, St. Mary's County on page 127.]
War of 1812
  • List of Pensioners on the Roll, January 1, 1883; Giving the Name of Each Pensioner, the Cause for Why Pensioned, the Post-Office Address, the Rate of Pension Per Month, and the Date of Original Allowance... Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1883. FHL Collection 973 M2Lp v. 5; digital versions at Google Books and Internet Archive. [See Vol. 5, Maryland, St. Mary's County, pp. 154-155. Identifies War of 1812 veterans living in this county in 1883.]





  • [1678, 1681] 1678 and 1681 Saint Mary's County tax lists, available online, courtesy: MDGenWeb.

Vital Records


"Marriage Licenses of St. Mary's County, 1794-1864 (7533 Persons)," is available online, see pages 313-405 and index in:

  • Brumbaugh, Gaius Marcus. Maryland Records: Colonial, Revolutionary, County and Church from Original Sources. Vol. 1. Baltimore, Md.: Williams & Wilkins Company, 1915. Digital version at Google Books.

Societies and Libraries

  The Society of the Ark and the Dove was founded in 1910. It was formed to fellowship those that trace their descent from Lord Baltimore and those that arrived on the Ark and the Dove in 1634 to settle Maryland. This society is multifaceted, encouraging research of early Maryland history and promoting and supporting Museums, Historical Foundations and Societies.

Family History Centers

Web Sites


  1. List of Counties in Maryland,] Wikipedia.
  2. Wikipedia
  3. William Hand Browne, ed., Archives of Maryland: Proceedings and Acts of the General Assembly of Maryland October 1678-November 1683 (Baltimore: Maryland Historical Society, 1889).
  4. Family History Library Film Number 599840 item 4 page 105
  5. Family History Library Film Number 599841 item 3 page 125
  6. Family History Library Film Number 599840 item 4 page 112