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c. 1742; c. 1858 renovated; 1986 restored. 14800 Governor Ogden Bowie Dr.

Darnall’s Chance is a heavily restored early brick manor house, preserving Upper Marlboro’s most significant landmark. One of the earliest substantial houses in the region, it was built as a five-bay, one-and-a-half-story dwelling of Flemish-bond brick with quoining, a central pavilion, paired flanking chimneys, and a jerkinhead roof. Exemplary of the period, the generous 55 × 35-foot house was described in 1760 as a four-room plan with broad center passage, a full cellar with kitchen, and a fireplace in each room. It was built for Scottish immigrant and prominent merchant James Wardrop on land once owned by Henry Darnall, a relative of the colonial proprietors, the Calvert family.

By the mid-nineteenth century, the house was remodeled as an Italianate Villa and raised to a full two stories; a stuccoed facade was applied. It was extensively restored by owners M-NCPPC in 1986, which reconstructed the original roof, chimneys, and leaded casement windows. The property includes a burial vault dating to c. 1775.

Writing Credits

Lisa Pfueller Davidson and Catherine C. Lavoie


What's Nearby


Lisa Pfueller Davidson and Catherine C. Lavoie, "DARNALL’S CHANCE", [, Maryland], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Maryland, Lisa Pfueller Davidson and Catherine C. Lavoie. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2022, 285-286.

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