The Maryland Historical Trust Library and Archives

NOTICE - New procedure for scheduling library appointments for archeological research.

Appointments to use the MHT Library for archeological research must be booked two weeks in advance.  This new procedure does not apply to those needing to do architectural research.



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The Archives and Library of the Maryland Historical Trust is the state’s principal repository for information about Maryland’s architectural, archeological, and cultural resources.  Included in the archives is the survey documentation for historic properties and archeological sites listed in the Maryland Inventory of Historic Properties which is a broad-based catalog of information on districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects of known or potential value to the prehistory, history, upland and underwater archeology, architecture, engineering, and culture of the State of Maryland.   The Inventory consists of two parts:  standing structures/non-archeological sites and archeological sites, and information about any Inventory properties that are included in the National Register of Historic Places can be found in the library.  Also in the library are the following:  the documentation for the Trust’s oral history collection ;  approximately 3,500 books dealing primarily with archeology (terrestrial and maritime), Native Americans, architecture, history, historic preservation, decorative arts, building conservation and technology, and bibliography as they relate to Maryland and surrounding regions; an extensive journal collection.
















Hours and Scheduling

The library is open to the public on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays by appointment only. All material relating to Maryland’s archeological sites is accessible only to qualified researchers with prior approval from the Office of Archeology.

For further information or to schedule an appointment, contact  the librarian, Mary Louise de Sarran, at (410) 514-7655, or write to:

Maryland Historical Trust Library
ATTN: Mary Louise de Sarran
100 Community Place
Crownsville, MD 21032.

Library Collections

Maryland Inventory of Historic Properties

Documentation for the sites which make up the Maryland Inventory of Historic Properties is maintained for approximately 40,000 architectural resources (individual sites and historic districts), more than 12,600 archeological sites (prehistoric and historic), and 26 oral history projects.  While archeological research files are restricted to use by qualified professionals, the architectural portion of the inventory and the oral history collection is accessible to the public. 

Architectural survey files typically include summary descriptions of the resource and a statement of significance, maps, photographs, negatives, and sometimes drawings.  Survey files can include  documentation  about structures as varied as “houses” of all sizes and types (big houses, little houses, brick houses, frame houses, lighthouses, school houses, smoke houses,  slave houses),  towers  (water towers, fire towers, bell towers),  privies, barns, corn cribs, churches, and a B-29 bomber

Oral History Collections

The oral history collection includes transcripts and audio and/or video cassettes of interviews as well as photographs of interviewees.   A sampling of oral history projects includes Baltimore County Historic African American Communities, Berkley Crossroads,   Calvert County Tobacco Culture, Lexington Manor aka “Flat Tops,” Maryland’s Centennial of Flight Celebration, Middle River,  and  Smith Island.

Other Collections

  • Maps of historic and archeology resources, using 7.5’ USGS topographic quads;
  • Copies of historic maps from throughout Maryland;
  • Black-and-white photographs, negatives, and color slides of individual sites and districts;
  • Architectural drawings;
  • Architectural and archeological research reports for sites in Maryland and neighboring states;
  • Historic structure reports;
  • Audio and video cassettes (other than those in the oral history collection) and DVDs;
  • Plans (development plans, town plans, etc.); and
  • Vertical files.

(Please note: The Maryland Historical Trust Library does not have genealogical research materials. For genealogical matters, please visit either the Maryland State Archives or the Maryland Historical Society Library.

Databases and Microform

A database for the architectural component of the Maryland Inventory of Historic Properties may be accessed online by clicking here.

When visiting the library and archives, one may view the following on microfilm/fiche:

  • County inventories for architectural sites;
  • HABS Survey: Maryland Collection (photos and text through 1988);
  • County tax assessments of 1783;
  • Federal Direct Tax 1798;
  • Maryland Historical Society 1783 Tax List;
  • Maryland Gazette (1728-1888);
  • U.S. Census for selected counties;
  • Queen Anne’s County Annual Valuations; and
  • The Park List (14 reels of the full text of the approximately 120 books referenced in Helen Park’s A List of Architectural Books Available in American before the Revolution).


This page updated: July 14, 2014