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1793-c. 1850. Main St. from N. Federal St. to Emory Alley
  • (Lisa Pfueller Davidson and Catherine C. Lavoie)

New Market was founded in 1793 by speculators William Plummer and Nicholas Hall as a market town and stage stop, capitalizing on the overland trade via the newly established Baltimore Turnpike to Frederick (later the National Road), situated a day’s wagon ride away. The founders’ intent is manifested by the town’s linear plan; 165-foot-long parcels combine “front” lots that line the turnpike or main street with adjoining “back” lots along the wide alleys where stables, wagon stands, and carriage houses developed. New Market soon boasted a nail and button factory, blacksmith shops, a tannery, a distillery, dry goods stores, inns, and taverns.

Its buildings date largely from the early to mid-nineteenth century, are constructed of brick, and reflect Federal, Greek Revival, and other popular styles. Many combine a residence with a commercial venture, indicative of the small towns within this region. The most sophisticated is 5 W. Main (1803–1815), once the National Hotel and Stage Office, and later a general store and post office. Others include the former George Burgess house and attached grocery store (c. 1850; 18 E. Main) and the regional gable and half hip-roofed building (c. 1858; 1 W. Main) with a second-floor residence. Utz Mercantile (1881; 26 W. Main), with a fully glazed storefront, is one of the few continuously operating businesses.

Early log houses built by town-founder William Plummer are a one-room house (c. 1798; 37 W. Main), now a rear wing, built for his aunt, and his own house (c. 1790s) at 51 W. Main. The distinctive federal period inn (c. 1793; 8 W. Main) was the town’s first. Erected for innkeeper John Roberts, it was raised to three stories in the mid-nineteenth century, operating as E. T. Hilton’s Hotel. Representative of Federal houses is the imposing brick house flanked by wings (c. 1793; 14 W. Main), once the home and office of physician Belt Brashear. In 1936, it had the distinction of housing New Market’s first antique shop, launching a period when it was known as the “Antiques Capital of Maryland.”

Writing Credits

Lisa Pfueller Davidson and Catherine C. Lavoie


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Lisa Pfueller Davidson and Catherine C. Lavoie, "MAIN STREET, NEW MARKET", [New Market, 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, 340-340.

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