Preserving our past...fostering our future.
History

 Arnold, MD has a rich history dating back to the early settlement of Arnold, beginning with the farm of John Arnold, a veteran of the War of 1812 who acquired 300 acres on the north side of the Severn River.

"The Little Post Office That Grew" by Alberta Stornetta is a series of articles and condensed portions of her forthcoming book on the history of Arnold. The series of articles were published in Anne Arundel County History Notes
, the quarterly publication of the Ann Arrundell County Historical Society.

Part I - The Little Post Office That Grew

Part II
- A Glimpse Into the Everyday Life of Early Arnold

Part III
- From Tracks to Trails

Part IV
- Arnold Elementary

Part V
- Arnold Comes of Age

Part I: The Little Post Office That Grew

The traffic light is red, forbidding access to the intersection of Arnold Road and Governor Ritchie Highway (Maryland Route 2). Traffic flows north and south - cars, SUVs, semis, delivery trucks, busses, campers, boats on trailers, tow trucks - all traveling at breakneck speed. The air is filled with exhaust fumes, the sound of diesel engines, the ping of a gas station pump, a police siren; but high above it all, a mother osprey settles serenely on her nest atop a communications relay tower.

Candlestick Tree

Arnold's commercial intersection is guarded by a huge modern Safeway grocery store, whose parking lot is always full. Across Arnold Road is an Exxon gas station and short stop. A furniture store occupies another corner - people use their parking lot to cut through and avoid the traffic light. On the fourth corner is the new TD Bank, flanked by Arnold Station Shopping Center. Also close by is the Von Paris Moving and Storage Company, a Sunoco station, BB&T Bank, and the Arnold Volunteer Fire Station. Yet go two blocks on either side of Ritchie Highway, and there are tree-lined streets with private single family homes. This is the dichotomy of Arnold, Maryland.

Arnold is not a town, but has a post office. Arnold has no city hall, or mayor, but has a fire house. Arnold's only elected officials sit on the County Council and State Legislature in Annapolis. Unseen by those on the main highway, Arnold is a community of people, homes, schools, businesses, and, as of 1963, a zip code of 21012.

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How did the community get its name?

The Religious Tolerance Act was an open invitation to those Puritan families seeking religious freedom, to come from Virginia (where the Church of England was mandated) to Maryland. Anthony Arnold began the migration of the family from Kent County, Virginia to southern Maryland in 1670. We have reason to believe the Arnold family were Quakers, or Friends, as they called themselves. Several generations later, John Arnold bought a tract of land on the north bank of the Severn River known as "Hammond's Security" for $1,756.50 cash. John Arnold lived in a house which still stands on Freshfields Lane in Arnold, Maryland. John requested to be buried between two trees in his back yard - some say to keep an eye on his young widow.

Elijah Arnold Home and Store

John Arnold's eldest son, Elijah Redmond Arnold, married Matilda Hammond, daughter of Dr. William Hammond. They lived in the area now called Rugby Hall. Records of the U.S. Postal Service indicate that a post office was established at Arnold's Store in 1852. This building was Elijah's home; the store was operated in the smaller building attached on the left. The building, after several renovations, still stands at the intersection of Old County Road and Baltimore and Annapolis Boulevard. In 1880 Edgar F. Arnold became post master, and the name was changed from Arnold's Store to just plain Arnold.

Thomas Hamilton Arnold, John's second son, inherited his father's land and became a leader in the community. When the Baltimore and Annapolis Short Line Railroad was allowed to pass through Thomas H. Arnold's property in 1887, he became the station master at Arnold Station. Thomas Arnold owned a store near the tracks, about a mile and a half further south of Elijah's home and store. The Arnold post office was moved to Thomas' store, and renamed Asbury. The archives of Asbury UMC in Arnold contain a recipt from Mr. Arnold's store in the year 1891, with the Asbury address. Mr. Arnold's store became the center of activity as the railroad became an important access to the area.

At first, all of the train stations were three sided sheds set beside the tracks. Mr. Arnold's store, just across the tracks, had a long porch with benches where people could wait for the train, chat with neighbors, pick up their mail, or leave their muddy shoes for nicer ones to wear into town. Arnold's store became the center of activity in the rural community. Finally, in 1902, the post office regained the name of Arnold, and Thomas' grandson, Martin Steele, assumed the operation of the store and was named postmaster. The picture on the left shows Bill Schriefer, Ann Statt, and Clarence "Sonny" Jordan at the station in 1936.

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Thomas H. Arnold's obituary in The Evening Capital gives us a pretty good insight into the character of the man who gave Arnold its name.

Death of Thomas H. Arnold

Mr. Thomas H. Arnold died at Arnold's station at midnight Thursday. He was in the seventy-sixth year of his age. He was a man of robust build, and until three years ago, enjoyed the best of health, when an attack of grippe left his with a complication of diseases. Two weeks ago he was taken to his bed with facial erysipelas, which was the primary cause of his death. In this illness he was attended by Dr. Zachariah Ridout and Dr. John M. Hayes; Dr. George Wells, of Annapolis, also being called in consultation. Drs. Ridout and Hayes were with him almost continuously from the time they were summoned and the very best attention was given their patient, but without avail.

Mr. Arnold has had the respect of men throughout his life and for a half century has been prominent in the affairs of his county. A man of fine judgment, his advice was often sought. He was never a candidate for office, but in the famous fight of 1875, he was forced upon the ticket of that year for county commissioner. With other candidates on the ticket of that year he was declared elected, but after a contest in the courts the ticket was ousted. Mr. Arnold served for a number of years as one of the trustees of the Almshouse, resigning when ill health forced him to do so. Mr. Arnold was one of the largest land owners of this county and had been a very successful fruit grower. He was also engaged in merchandising. Mr. Arnold is the last survivor of the noted Wharton jury. It was he who stood firm for the acquittal of the prisoner, and after a prolonged lockup, the other eleven joined him in the verdict. Mr. Arnold was a loyal Methodist from early manhood until death. He was a member of Asbury Church, near his home. He gave largely and quietly to the support of the church he loved. The church has honored him in all the offices that laymen could fill. Failing health made it necessary to surrender much of this service, but as an attendant upon divine worship he was there until the last.

Mr. Arnold was married twice. His first wife was Miss Rebecca Waring, of Prince George's county, and the second was Miss Eliza Waring, a sister of the first Mrs. Arnold. His widow and eight children survive him. His sons are Messrs. Alton R., R. Harry and Severn K. The daughters are Mrs. Wilson B. Nichols, of Baltimore (Alice Virginia), Mrs. J.L. Kibler, wife of Rev. J.L. Kibler, of Roanoke, Va.(Angelica Rebecca); Mrs. Thomas L. Gladden of Lexington, Texas(Mary Blanche), and Misses Lida M. and Minnie M. Arnold.

 

Mr. Arnold's tombstone in the historic Asbury Church Cemetery is a lasting and visual reminder of the man who gave the community of Arnold its name. His mother, his wives, many of his siblings and his children are all buried around him. Also surrounding him are graves of many of his friends and neighbors, all of whom had a part in the settlement and history of Arnold, Maryland.

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Arnold, from the 1878 Hopkins Atlas



 

Part II: A Glimpse Into Everyday Life of Early Arnold

Rural Arnold, on the Broadneck Peninsula, was pretty much a little piece of Heaven isolated from the rest of the world. Most of the residents were farmers, and  were basically self-sufficient.  The small population, physical isolation, and common agricultural background gave the community its unique culture - that of respect for their fellow man, neighbor helping neighbor, and a social life which revolved largely around their church.

The happenings in the "outside world" most likely had no effect on the community life of Arnold. James Knox Polk was beginning his term as eleventh President of the United States; Samuel Morse had put aside his artist brushes to whip in shape the great telegraph system; the Naval Academy was about to come into being. We know of no one who left home for the riches of the California gold rush or the excitement of the Mexican War. A poet from Baltimore had just published Annabelle Lee," but most of the reading of Arnold folk was from the Bible.

The main roads were Baltimore and Annapolis Boulevard  following the length of the peninsula, and Old Jones Station Road crossing the peninsula. These roads were muddy tracks reinforced by oyster shells and cinders, and probably followed old Indian trails. Some few people had horse-drawn carriages or wagons, but the roads were in such poor condition that everybody traveled by horse. Even the children had their own horse. A large block or platform was in every yard for riders who needed aid in mounting. Every stable had an extra stall for guests.

Crops of garden vegetables, peaches, cantaloupes, and water melons were sent to market in Baltimore and Annapolis by boat, and most supplies came in by boat. Wagons were loaded, driven out in water to the horses stomachs. The row boats came up between the wagons, and loading went on from each wagon at the same time. (photo of Stinchcomb wagons off-loading to boat)While the drivers returned to the field for more, the row boats rowed out to the "pungy1." About 1200 baskets of peaches a day were sent to Baltimore from the Stinchcomb farm, at a price of about 17 cents a basket.

The farms in these times supplied the needs of the family. Corn was a staple - shelled at home, sacks loaded onto the back of a horse and taken to the grist mill at Waterford Pond. Corn pone, cakes, mush, dumplings, hoe cakes, and ash cakes made good eating. Cooking was done by the open fireplace. Baking of bread, meal, pies, and cakes was made possible in cast iron pans (on legs) with flat iron lids. The hot coals under the pan and a shovel full of coals on the lid, presided over by an experienced cook, did the job. Johnny cakes were patted on thin boards and set in front of the fire. Meat was roasted on a spit in the fireplace. The coals in the fireplace were carefully preserved by putting a huge back log in for the night. In the unlikely event the coals went out, children were sent to the next farm with a bucket to bring back some live coals. One of the children's chores was to make light pencil-like rolls of paper for use in lighting candles or oil lamps from the fireplace.

 Vegetables were home grown. Herbs were grown, harvested, and then dried, hanging from rafters in the attic. Brews were made from the herbs to "cure" many ills. Meat was raised on the farm, smoked or packed in salt to cure, and kept from season to season. The only fresh meat was in the winter, when some farm animals were butchered, or when a hunter got lucky, or supplied from the resident flock of chickens. Of course fish, crabs, clams and oysters were available for the taking.

We are fortunate to have a hand-written manuscript written by Masonetta Mae Stinchcomb Waring, (b. 1880 d. 1965) the daughter of Alfred Asbury Stinchcomb and his wife, Sarah. Masonetta describes the life of a typical Arnold resident. Among the residents of Arnold, Alfred Asbury Stinchcomb was a leader in the community. Alfred inherited his farm and home, originally called Pettibone's Rest, on Bayhead Road, from his father. The house exists today known as Bayhead.

The homes were unpretentious, usually wooden frame construction, with room for large families. The typical Arnold farmhouse had a center hall, with stairs to the upper floor, a parlor on one side, family sitting room or dining room on the other side, and kitchen; with bedrooms upstairs - no indoor plumbing yet. Most houses had a long front porch running the length of the house. Carpets were made of rag strips, braided, and sewn together. Every tiny girl collected rag strips, rolled them into a ball. The balls were weighed and taken (by boat) to an establishment in Baltimore, and for 25 cents a yard, made into carpet. Of course the pattern was hit or miss, but seemed to blend with anything. Many homes had photographs of family members, framed with an oval frame enclosing a domed glass. In the winter, when there was no outdoor work to do, the ladies got together for quilting bees. Many hands were employed as the ladies sat  around the quilt, rolled on a large frame - sometimes suspended on the backs of chairs, or sometimes rigged so that it could be pulled up to the ceiling when not in use.

Mr. Stinchcomb  built an ice house in which to preserve some foods and to have ice through the summer for himself and his neighbors. It was a huge circular pit lined with brick, with a low wall with a small door for access and covered with a roof. It was filled from a pond, now extinct, near the Bay. When the water froze in the winter, gathering blocks of ice for the ice house was a neighborhood event. Thus there was some manner of primitive refrigeration  in Arnold, and home-made ice cream could be made in the summer.

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Weddings were a great social event, attended by the whole community, most of whom were relatives close or distant. This report from the Maryland Gazette of March 11, 1897 gives a good description:

FASHIONABLE WEDDING

MISS ELIZA WARING BECOMES MRS. WALTER STINCHCOMB
One of the loveliest weddings ever solemnized at Asbury M.E. Church, took place Thursday evening at 8:30 o'clock, uniting in the bonds of holy matrimony Miss Eliza Waring, daughter of Mr. Richard Waring, and Mr. Walter Stinchcomb, son of Mr. A.A. Stinchcomb, a prosperous farmer and vessel owner of Anne Arundel County. The church presented a beautiful scene for the nuptials. Three huge arches of evergreens were erected over and in front of the pulpit, while the walls were gaily festooned and banks of floral designs graced the chancel.

To the strains of the wedding choral from Lohengrin, played upon the organ by Miss Masonetta Stinchcomb, sister of the groom,  the bridal party entered the sacred edifice, the bridegroom attended by the bride's youngest brother, Mr. Everett Waring, as best man, entering the church and advancing to meet the bride, who entered with her sister, Miss Nellie Waring, as maid of honor, preceded by their little sister, Lillian, as flower girl.

The bride looked the ideal picture she represented. She wore a becoming gown of white silk, with full skirt, en train, high bodice, trimmed in orange blossoms. Her long tulle veil was confined to her soft dark hair, with a spray of orange blossoms. She carried an immense bouquet of Marachal Neil roses, tied with white satin ribbon. The maid of honor and flower girl were tastily costumed in pink and white organdy, with satin trimmings, bearing white roses.

The ushers were Messrs. Harry R. and T. Theodore Waring, of Washington; Weems Winchester and Samuel T. Revell, of St. John's College, and Roy V. Tydings and Carroll Brice, of St. Margaret's. They wore the conventional dress suit with boutonnieres of roses. The bridegroom and the best man wore the same. Following the ceremony, a wedding lunch was given at the home of the groom, at which only the immediate relatives, a few intimate friends of the bride and groom and the bridal party were present. The young couple will reside on Magothy River, near Arnold.

Folks didn't come to call in those days, they visited - sometimes for weeks at a time. Arnold hospitality was abundant.  If the mother or father of a family died or was sick, neighbors took the children for a while. When a single pastor came to the Methodist Church, neighbors put him up for six months at a time. At Christmas the Stinchcomb table was always full of cakes and other refreshments. Every day neighbors came and went. This was done in all homes then. No supper during the holidays, you just ate all the time. It was "open house."

The Tydings house on a neighboring farm burned to the ground, so Alfred and Sarah took in the family. The hired hands were housed in out buildings until the new house could be built. The Tydings shared the work and the food bill. Mrs. Tydings was unable to help for long, she was expecting an addition to a then large family. In due time, the stork arrived. Alfred went for the doctor, and Sarah held the fort in a feeble way until the doctor arrived.  Twins were born. Alfred made a cradle out of a wooden soap box. The twins' mouths could not hold the average bottle set ups so quills were wrapped in old linen, stuck in a cork, then in a bottle. Those self-sufficient Arnold residents were great at improvising.

  1. The pungy is a type of schooner peculiar to the Chesapeake Bay; a two-masted gaff-rigged schooner. The deck is flush with a log rail, especially made to haul freight, particularly perishables.

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 The story of life after the railroad came through Arnold going to Annapolis.

Part III: From Tracks to Trails

The story of the railroad serving Arnold

The coming of the railroad to the Broadneck Peninsula allowed the Arnold community to shed its cocoon and emerge as a vital part of the world around it. The seemingly isolated area was suddenly able to participate in the social, cultural, commercial, and educational activities of Baltimore and Annapolis.

There had been a steam railroad between Baltimore and Annapolis since 1840. The problem for Arnold residents was that the Annapolis & Elkridge Railroad was on the south side of the Severn River, so people from Arnold still had to cross the river to use this route to Baltimore.

In 1880 the Annapolis & Baltimore Short Line was chartered by a group of New England promoters. The project proceeded at a leisurely pace, with actual construction of the railroad began in 1886; and in March 1887, the new Short Line's Engine No. 1 left Bladen Street station in Annapolis. The new steam line was actually four miles shorter than the old Elkridge line, and passed through scenic and sparsely populated farmland, in an almost straight line to the Severn River, where the rails crossed on a wooden trestle. In 1893 the company was sold to George Burnham, and reorganized as the Baltimore & Annapolis Short Line.

In 1908 the line was electrified and changed its name to Maryland Electric Railways Company. Steam engines were still used for the freight business; but passenger service became much cleaner, faster, and more frequent with the nine new high-speed Pullman type coaches. The luxurious coaches were 56 feet long, weighed slightly over 44 tons, and were equipped with four Westinghouse 100 h.p. motors along with Westinghouse triple-valve automatic traction brakes, which allowed operation with some of the older steam line coaches that were being retained as trailers.

Today, Anne Arundel County Historical Society's Browse and Buy Shoppe, located at Jones Station Road and Baltimore Annapolis Boulevard, occupies the original sub- station. High tension feeders entered the building through the large holes in the top of the wall on the north side. Visible on the railroad side of the building are short sections of track at right angles to the main line. They lead into two bricked-in doors. The rails and doors were for dollies that could shift the heavy transformers for repairs or replacement.
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Anne Arundell County Historical Building

Anne Arundell County Historical Society Building

After 1913, riders could experience the elegance of interior decoration of the times. An arch above the upper windows was enhanced with stained glass s. The coaches were divided into two sections, one with seats upholstered in plush green mohair and the other with leather. This latter section was called the "smoker." Beside each seat was a bright brass cuspidor, and there were knurled brass plates by each window for striking matches.2

Shortly after the turn of the century, realtors touted the benefits of land along the Severn River, and summertime cottage communities began to develop. The Sherwood Forest Company attempted to develop a sister community called Ashby, on the north bank of the Severn at the end of Joyce Lane. Prospective buyers were instructed to take the B & A Railroad to Joyce Station, and the club ferry to Sherwood.

1900's Era

1900's era

Pines-on-the Severn was sub-divided into lots for summer and weekend cottages in about 1924. Edwin Pugh Baugh, a Florida businessman who made his money in fertilizer, chemicals and land deals, built an expansive copy of a French seaside chateau on the banks of the Severn, in what is now the community of Rugby Hall. He named it Uchillyn on the Severn. Passersby can still see the name on what was the gatehouse, now a private home on Old County Road. After Mr. Baugh died in 1921, the main building became known as Rugby Hall, a small hotel and restaurant. The estate eventually became Wroxeter-on-Severn, a private co-ed prep school, now closed. The building is still standing as a private residence.

The Arnold family reaped rewards by having the railroad cross their properties. Arnold's store at Revell became the post office. In 1902 the post office was moved to another store run by two of Thomas Arnold's daughters about one mile south, in what is now called The Depot at Arnold.

The railroad not only brought development of real estate in Arnold, but brought other commercialization. Charles Tate opened a cannery next to the post office. Local farmers could bring their produce to be processed and shipped to Baltimore.

During its heyday, the years between 1918 and the late 1920s, the B & A transported as many
as 1,750,000 passengers per year between Baltimore and Annapolis. Trains left every hour from 6 am through 11 pm (during rush hour, the trains left every 30 minutes). Thomas Arnold's obituary even suggested scheduled departure times of the trains from Baltimore to his funeral in Arnold. Because of its strong performance , the neighboring Washington Baltimore & Annapolis bought the Annapolis Short Line in 1921. In 1931 the line went into receivership and finally emerged as the Baltimore and Annapolis Railroad Company. The right-of-way and some equipment were bought by the Bondholders Protective Society.

Several tragic incidents mar the history of the railroad serving Arnold. John Mellen. who wrote a series of articles called Arundel Vignettes for The Evening Capital., recalls one colorful incident told by Nelson Molter :

Tuesday the 24th was an otherwise pleasant June morning in 1913 when
Old George, the keeper of the draw, had waved to the regular passenger
car, on time for Annapolis at 7:45 a.m. According to schedule, the morning
freight, which was still a steam run, would follow in seven minutes, and
George, thinking he had enough time, opened the bridge (this was a swing
bridge, not a draw) to accommodate a two-mast schooner which had called
for clearance. As the center span swung open to its full 900, suddenly there
was the whistle from No. 5, leaving Winchester ahead of time on the long
downgrade to the bridge. In the days before self-lapping brakes, a "straight
air" valve permitted only one application before the train line had to be
recharged for another try. In such a situation came the locomotive and six
cars at a fair speed around the curve and out onto the trestle. Old George
remained heroically at his post, clutching frantically at the lever which
controlled the bridge mechanism, but the ponderous workings of multiple
gears would grind only so fast, until the span closed to within a scant 24
inches from the locking position. As the engine crew jumped into the river,
No. 5 reared slightly, then plunged into the channel, dragging the loaded cars,
one by one, behind her, until only the caboose could be seen above the water.
For six days thereafter patrons of the Short Line were ferried from the foot of
of King George Street to Severnside via steamboat.

Another accident actually took place at the Arnold station crossing. The Baltimore Sun reported on December 11, 1924, that four people died when the Washington, Baltimore and Annapolis Electric Railroad two-car train crashed into their automobile. Mr., Harry D. Holme and his sister, Miss Anne W. Holme, of Mount Washington and Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Joseph Hansli were killed. Five-year-old Joseph Hansli Jr. , thrown clear of the wreckage at impact, survived. The automobile was bound northeast on a 12-foot private road which leads from Pines-on-Severn, a real estate development, to the Baltimore Annapolis Boulevard. The Holme family had a cottage at Pines-on-Severn. Mr. and Mrs. Hansli and their young son had been guests for dinner, and were returning to Baltimore.

Albert W. Miller, motorman, said he had almost reached the crossing when, the automobile seemed to leap from behind the trees on the roadway directly in his path. He jammed on the brakes, but was unable to prevent the crash. The big electric car struck the automobile fairly in the center and ripped it to pieces. Despite his efforts to stop the train it continued on past the crossing for at least 175 feet. When it finally was brought to a stop the bodies of all four dead were wedged beneath the trucks of the first car.

The crossing is about 200 yards south of the railroad station at Arnold. South of this, the tracks disappear, around a curve. A train from Annapolis, after rounding this curve has a straightaway of between 600 and 700 feet before reaching the crossing. Two big trees on the narrow roadway hide the railroad approach from the south from automobiles bound from the Severn settlement for Baltimore. It likewise hides from the view of motormen on the trains automobiles approaching from the Severn.

At the crossing there are no safety gates, warning lights or bell. Instead, there is a sign on which is painted in large letters: "Private Railroad Crossing." Below, in smaller letters: "Trains do not signal when going over this crossing."

The third tragedy is reported in Discovering Our School Community, a document compiled by the 5th and 6th grades of Arnold Elementary School in 1953:

George Gray, (a local farmer and garbage collector) served the Pines with his
wagon and two oxen. One day they were crossing the tracks when the W.B. & A.
train came through. The oxen were killed but the driver survived. Now the
community has garbage collection twice a week by truck.

With the start of World War II and gas rationing, the B & A often ran with all available equipment in service. Trains were packed with midshipmen from the Naval Academy and their supporters going to the Army-Navy games in Philadelphia. 3Before Severna Park High School was built, students from Arnold and surrounding neighborhoods went to Annapolis High School via the train. Mail came to the Arnold post office by train. Workers remember a large hook beside the tracks that they hung the mail bag on, and the train crew would pick up the mail "on the fly" if there was no reason to stop.

Following World War II, gasoline rationing was over, returning servicemen were buying cars, highways were improving; people were again using their cars for transportation. Eventually B & A substituted buses for the more expensive-to-operate trains, and by 1950 rail passenger service was discontinued. The B & A purchased a diesel engine and maintained freight service between Baltimore and Annapolis on a full carload basis only, until the old trestle across the Severn River was condemned unsafe.

It seemed like the end of the line for the old faithful B & A. The abandoned property deteriorated and became an eyesore in many places. Public interest in restoring the land as a linear park began in the mid-1970s. The Severna Park Jaycees maintained a portion of the railroad right-of-way as a hiking path. Other civic groups and private citizens lobbied for a trail. By 1980 the Anne Arundel County Department of Recreation and Parks adopted the idea, and Anne Arundel County purchased the 66 foot wide corridor between Glen Burnie to Arnold for just $80,000. Construction began in 1985 and was completed in 1990. The county spent $9.0 million on the project, which included paving 13.3 miles of trail, erecting five new bridges, and restoring two historic buildings. Even before it was finished it was the most-used park in the county, and is hailed nationally as an outstanding example of a linear park.4

Footnotes

  1. Baltimore & Annapolis Trail Park Guide, UMBC Department of Geography, 1992
  2. MOLTER, Nelson. Severna Park Anne Arundel County, Maryland - A History of the Area, 1988.
  3. Baltimore and Annapolis Railroad. Retrieved January 3, 2011 from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baltimore_and_Annapolis_Railroad
  4. Baltimore & Annapolis Trail Park Guide, UMBC Department of Geography, 1992


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Part IV: Arnold Elementary School

The Arnold Elementary School is shown on both the Martinet map of 1860 and the Hopkins Atlas of 1878. It is said that Thomas H. Arnold donated the land for the school. The building and grounds were located at the intersection of Baltimore and Annapolis Boulevard and Church Road.

In a document written about the Arnold community in the 1840s by Masonetta Stinchcomb Waring, she reports there were no public schools at this time. Groups of farmers hired teachers. They held classes in churches, homes, or halls. The teachers were usually students who were studying for some profession, or sometimes, the local itinerant Methodist minister. Discipline was described as having the unruly child "kneel on a fence rail, hold a book aloft in one hand, switch in the other, until the teacher calmed the others down."

We have no idea what the first school looked like. We do know what the Arnold School looked like in 1912 from a photo contributed by Mrs. Mildred C. Schoch.

These recollections come from an article written for the October 1981 issue of the Quarterly News Bulletin of the Ann Arundel County Historical Society by Mrs. Mildred C. Schoch. She recalls:

The entrance was a vestibule where we hung our coats and left our lunch boxes
on a shelf. It was heated by a large pot-bellied stove which I always feared for it
had cracks through which the coals glowed and I always imagined it would
explode some day! Besides heating the room we used it for heating cocoa and hot
water for dyeing Easter eggs; later we also had soup on cold days.
Our teacher was Mrs. Frank Rice, Sarah Robinson Rice, who was "Miss Sadie" to all. She was organist for our church and so we benefited from her talents at school and at church when she put on entertainments for Children's Day and Christmas.

Mrs. Schoch also remembers all shared in the care of the school. The big boys brought in the wood from the shed in the rear of the building, and the students took turns getting water for the communal water bucket from the nearby Arnold farm. The desks were the "double type," with the ones in front being slightly smaller than those in the rear. The desks faced the front of the room and the teacher's desk was on a raised platform.

In Discovering Our School Community by Grades V and VI (1952-1953) Arnold Elementary School, it is reported:

When this became too crowded, a second teacher was hired to have
a class in the little building then located on the point among a grove
of trees.
In 1922 the Board of Education gave Mr. Rocklitz a contract to build
a two-room school which was the original structure of the building
here today.
In 1924 two more rooms were added (the present second and third
grade rooms) and the final addition of the fourth and fifth grade rooms
was made in 1932.
Arnold School may be described as a brown shingled structure with an
asphalt roof. It has plastered walls, wooden floors, its own water
system, and a small cafeteria in basement where the children get their
hot lunches to bring back to the rooms to eat.

But wait . . . there were two Arnold Elementary Schools. There was one for white children, and one for Afro-American children. The other Arnold Elementary School was built behind Mount Calvary Methodist Church on Jones Station Road. This building also could be described as a brown shingled structure with an asphalt roof and wooden floors ; but, as the photographs indicate, that's where the likeness ends. Water had to be carried from the neighbors, and there was no basement.

Two former students of Arnold's Afro-American Elementary School share their memories.

Aunt Connie (Constance Pulley Lamberth)  attended the school from 1928 - 1934. The school had one room and one teacher. Aunt Connie walked to school from her home in the Shore Acres area, carrying a brought-from-home lunch to eat at her desk. She remembers that the teacher would move from age group to age group, while the other students went about their work quietly.

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Miss Alverta Darden also attended the Jones Station Road Arnold Elementary School in the late 1940s and early 1950s. There was still one room and one teacher, a chalkboard, and some books. She remembers how, in snowy weather, her father would drive the neighboring children from Church Road to school on a crude horse-drawn sled with a bale of hay on it.

In the early 1950s, the Jones Station Road Arnold School was closed, and the student body was transferred to the Skidmore School on Colburt Road.

By September, 1953, the Church Road Arnold Elementary planned to put in new ceilings, floors, lighting system, a drain field, new furniture, and a new serving area to replace the cafeteria.

Eugene E. Gilhooly came to Arnold Elementary School as a teacher and principal in 1954. He describes the Arnold position as a proving ground for new principals. He taught 6th grade as well as administering school activities from his tiny office next door to the classroom. He fondly remembers those idyllic years when students were so responsible and disciplined. Each student was given a turn to answer the telephone if Mr. Gilhooly was teaching. There was no law against corporal punishment; but, when a discipline matter arose, he would call the parents and let them choose between a paddling or a few days out of school for the offender. Mrs. White brought hot lunches prepared at Belvedere Elementary School and, with the 6th grade helpers, served them to students at Arnold.

A terrible tragedy occurred when Mr. Gilhooly was principal. He remembers being outside putting up the flag, when he heard the sound of an auto crash at the Arnold intersection. He immediately ran down to find a car with students being driven from Winchester-on-Severn involved in the crash. Two of his second grade students were killed. Later, for some reason, the life insurance checks came to the school. Mr. Gilhooly said delivering those checks to the parents was the hardest thing he ever had to do in his life.

In the early 1960s schools in Anne Arundel County were desegregated. The community of Arnold was growing by leaps and bounds. The PTA was very active in obtaining a traffic light at the Arnold intersection. Margaret Goodhand became principal. Arnold Elementary School became overcrowded, so the Board of Education bought 11 acres from Asbury United Methodist Church to build a new Arnold School.

The author has personal experience with the overcrowding. Severna Park Middle School had not been built, so, in the fall of 1965, our 6th grader went to Ft. Meade - an hour on the school bus each way. Our 4th grader remained at the old Arnold School building with teacher, Miss Cooper. Third grade was sent to the Jewish Synagogue School on Spa Road, where our daughter had Miss Alverta Darden, the first Afro-American teacher at Arnold. Our 2nd grader went to class, under Mrs. Duerbeck, in the Education Building of Asbury Church. In 1966 our 1st grader attended Belvedere Elementary. Finally, in November 1967 the "new" Arnold Elementary School opened.

School pride was high. The mascot was a cricket, whose characteristics were derived from Jiminy Cricket, Pinocchio's conscience in a favorite Walt Disney story of the time. The instrumental music teacher, Mr. Rinaldo Massimino, wrote a fight song especially for Arnold. The students love shouting A-R-N-O-L-D at the top of their lungs.

A-R-N-O-L-D Elementary, that is our name.
A-R-N-O-L-D Elementary, our claim to fame.
'Tho we roam o'er the foam to a far off shore,
We'll shout your name for-ev-er more;
A-R-N-O-L-D Elementary, that is our name.

The Providence Center buildings now occupy the space where there once was a ball field. Every female student the author interviewed fondly remembered a time when the girls made outlines with fallen pine needles of the floor plan of a house. Of course the follow up was that the boys liked to mess it up. One former student showed me the scars on his knuckles from playing marbles at recess.

PTA parents were active in fund raising activities. Parent volunteers helped introduce computer concepts, coach a new chess club, and assisted as aides in reading and the library (now the media center).

Many things have changed at Arnold Elementary. The current mascot is a terrapin. No one remembers a fight song. Current Principal, Rosemary Biggert, came to Arnold in 2001 and has guided the school on a path of progress. Now there are computers, along with dry erase boards; hot lunches purchased for $2.60; an on-line newsletter; and last winter, students could email questions and get answers from a US Navy wintering-over party at the South Pole. Bright colors abound in the hallway show cases displaying student art projects.

At the present time, Arnold Elementary School is rated very highly by educators as well as parents. The high standing of the school is one of the reasons newcomers want to move to Arnold.

Today, the life of the brown shingled building on Church Road has not ended. For a few years it was used by the Board of Education as a regional office building. Now the building serves a new and exciting purpose. After extensive remodeling in 1979, it was reopened as the Arnold Senior Center. Once again the building is a bee hive of activity with classes and entertainments for our senior citizens, many of whom have fond memories of things they did in the same classrooms at an earlier time in their lives.

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 PART V: Arnold Comes of Age


How does one measure development? In human development , one progresses from infant to child, to teen, to young adult, to adult, to senior adult. At what point does a person "come of age?" Perhaps the history of Arnold could fit into such a format. The author would like to include the that part of the Broadneck peninsula, stretching from the Severn River to the Magothy River, and as far north as Severna Park; which would include not only the zip code 2012, but also 21409.


Infancy Providence settlement


The fertile land on which Arnold and nearby communities are situated was created thousands of years ago when the Susquehanna River became the Chesapeake Bay, and the Severn and Magothy Rivers became tidal estuaries of the Bay. When Captain John Smith sailed up the Chesapeake in his exploration of the region, he reported no Indians in the area. However, he did not sail the Severn or the Magothy. There is evidence that Indians lived here; where food was easily available, the climate was moderate, and the earth was productive. The belligerent Susquehannocks replaced the more docile Algonquins, and claimed the Broadneck as their hunting grounds. Some of the roads on the Broadneck Peninsula are said to be former Indian trails.


1649-50 marked the arrival of the first white settlers on the Broadneck Peninsula. At the invitation of Cecil Calvert, 2nd Lord Baltimore, a group of Puritans, fleeing from religious persecution in Virginia, established themselves on 250 acres of land at Providence on Greenbury Point . Eight to ten families, led by Richard Bennett and William Durand came. Edward Lloyd was among that group.


Interestingly enough, political change seems to be part of the lives of our Arnold residents from the very beginning. The English Civil War ( 1642-1651) had a direct effect on the residents of Providence on the Broadneck Peninsula. The conflict in England pitted English royalty (the current King Charles I) against Puritans (Oliver Cromwell), and Maryland became known as a haven for Catholics in the new world. Cecil Calvert was a catholic, but he wanted his fledgling province free of religious trouble, so he appointed


William Stone, a protestant, Governor of Maryland. The turmoil was reflected in Maryland by the conflict between Governor Stone and the Puritan settlers.

Governor Stone required the Puritans to swear allegiance to Lord Baltimore and the proprietary government as a prerequisite to owning land. The Puritans weren't about to swear allegiance to anyone. The fluctuations of power between Governor Stone, representing Lord Baltimore, and the Puritan leaders went from bad to worse. This dispute culminated in the Battle of the Severn, which the Puritans won.

After the Battle of the Severn, the Puritans of Providence reached agreement with Lord Baltimore recognizing his proprietorship, and Lord Baltimore then restored religious tolerance between Roman Catholics and Puritans.


When Anne Arundel County was created in 1650, Edward Lloyd was appointed by Governor Stone to be Commander of Anne Arundel County. Edward Lloyd and four other men were deputized to execute a treaty with the Susquehannas, supposedly arranged under the branches of a tulip popular tree that once stood on St. John's campus. Governor Stone rewarded Mr. Lloyd with the land grant, "Swan Neck." A stone marker was found and photographed by Mary Jane and Gilbert Moore. The marker, lost in the undergrowth somewhere off Joyce Lane, would indicate Lloyd's land must have been near here.


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Childhood Colonial times


Childhood is the time when a young human begins to learn physical and mental skills. Still under the care of an adult, the child can try out these newly learned skills in relative safety. In like manner, the settlers learned to adopt to their new way of living in a strange land under the supervision of the Calvert family.


Life calmed down for the inhabitants of Providence. They worked their plantations and worshipped as they pleased, and life was peaceful. Broadneck remained isolated and insulated from the busy world "outside." Transportation on land was practically non-existent. The many creeks and coves provided easy access to water, and most travel as well as marketing was carried on by boat.


In 1692 the Colonial Assembly enacted a law called "An Act for the Service of Almighty God and the Establishing of the Protestant Religion in the Province of Maryland". By the terms of this Act, Anne Arundel County was divided into four parishes: Herring Creek, South River, Middle Neck, and Broad Neck. Prior to this, land divisions were called "hundreds," according to the old English custom of designating an area of land that could support and raise one hundred soldiers for the King. Eventually the parishes were used to designate church parishes, and tax district became the accepted way to designate areas within Anne Arundel County. Broadneck became part of District 3.


Whatever the land designations were, Broadneck remained an idyllic landscape of individual self-sustaining farms. The people who lived here had no desire or real need for government services. Zoning, welfare, health departments, schools were non-existent The established courts basically handled contracts, land titles, and inheritances. The American Revolution had little effect on the peninsula; no battles were fought there, and no major destruction occurred. There seemed to be almost a period of stagnation of farming because tobacco crops had worn out the land. Farms on the Broadneck were relatively small - sixty to 200 acres.


The most important change after the Revolutionary War was the rise of Baltimore City as an economic center. As the city's population grew, so did the demand for food supplies. Farmers on the Broadneck began to diversify their crops away from tobacco, as they found the soil particularly suitable for growing fruits and vegetables.


Adolescence Connecting to the World


Adolescence is the time when a young human begins to connect with the world, to try out new ideas, to test his limits.


Land-owner names such as Arnold, Brice, Duvall, Joyce, Nichols, Pettibone, Pulley, Ridout, Spriggs, Stinchcomb, Tate, Tydings, and Winchester, appeared on the map in Hopkins' Atlas of 1878. John Arnold, whose family had come from Virginia by way of southern Anne Arundel County, purchased land on the north shore of the Severn some time after the War of 1812.

From the 1840s through the next hundred years, truck farming was the principal occupation, and Arnold became a veritable Garden of Eden filled with a variety of fruit orchards and crops. Asparagus, beans, cantaloupes, corn, peas, peaches, plums, strawberries, sweet potatoes, watermelons, and other produce carried premium prices when tagged with an Anne Arundel label. Arnold was particularly noted for its cantaloupes and watermelons.
The name "truck farming" does not indicate the way crops went to market. The term truck farming indicates garden fruits and vegetables grown for the consumers' table. During the 1800s and early 1900s, the prevalent style along the whole Eastern Seaboard of the U.S. was truck farming. There was great competition in getting your crop to market first to get the best price.


Alfred Asbury Stinchcomb and family

Masonetta S. Waring illustrates with this story:


One year Sophia had the first cucumbers in the Baltimore market.

That spring, when plants were tender, a severe storm came. When
she saw the apparent change in the weather, she called her force to
arms. They broke tiny sprigs off pine trees, hauled them to the fields;
there women, children, and men, laid a twig firmly over each tender
cucumber plant. That night it snowed. The plants were saved. I never
did hear what those cucumbers brought.


Spriggs watermelons and peaches on their way to market

In 1801 Henry Joyce bought a section of the original Swan Neck Grant, which extended roughly from what is now Rugby Hall to Pines-on-Severn. Henry Joyce was what is now called an experimental farmer. One of the first things he did on his farm called "Rayland" was to plant 300 strawberry plants and a grove of English walnut trees. His place prospered beyond expectation, and he carried his produce to Baltimore on his own sailing vessel. When the first railroad came to the southern bank of the Severn, Mr. Joyce bought more land for himself on the south bank, and divided his Rayland farm between his sons, John Henry and Cyrus. Cyrus persuaded Capt. Eliason of the Tolchester Steamboat Co. to send a steamship to pick up his produce. Capt. Eliason was given a right of way through the Joyce farm and one-quarter acre of ground for a wharf. On "steamer days" farmers from all over the neighborhood brought to the Samuel J. Pentz steamboat their wagonloads of choice vegetables and fruits.


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Religion played a major part in the lives of Arnold residents. St. Margaret's Parish had already been established. In 1831 a new Methodist congregation was organized and became part of the Baltimore Conference-Severn Circuit. There was only a circuit-riding preacher to serve the congregation until Thomas Arnold donated an acre of land, and the first building was erected in 1859. In 1851, a decade before the Civil War, a group of dedicated and self-sacrificing African-Americans purchased land from Samuel Richardson, and built Asbury Broadneck Methodist Church. The cost of building the original church was $60. Much of the social and educational life of the community revolved around these three churches.



Asbury Broadneck Methodist Church 1851

The coming of the railroad to Arnold allowed the community to become much less isolated, and to participate in social, commercial, and educational activities outside the Broadneck Peninsula. In 1902 Thomas Arnold became the station master at Arnold, and his store beside the railroad station became the Arnold Post Office. The Arnold community's first and last industrial establishment was Tate's cannery, located along a siding at the Arnold Station.

Shortly after the turn of the century, real estate developers began to reap the rewards of selling land along the Severn River for summer homes. Pines-on-Severn was one of the earliest developments. The area originally was a large farm owned by the Nichols family. In 1924 a developer named Leonidas Turner wanted to create a summer community for well-to-do people from Baltimore and Annapolis. He formed the Severn River Company and built a grand clubhouse called the Severn River Club where the Pines playground is now. The restaurant was a popular gathering place featuring tuxedo clad Afro-American waiters, with white-gloves, serving a variety of unusual foods. There was a golf course, clay tennis courts, and, of course, the beach. In 1930 a mysterious fire gutted the building. The Depression affected the Pines, as it did the rest of the country; and in 1932, the company was in foreclosure.


Marlene Geiman, a long-time resident, points out that all the early houses in the Pines were built facing the water regardless of the orientation of the lot, a fact that adds to the community's eccentric charm today.

In the early 1900s Greenbury Point once again became a birthplace - this time to our country's first Naval Air Station. Later most of the air operations were moved to Pensacola; however, some seaplanes were retained on the site. Wake Stornetta, USNA '51, as a midshipman, flew his first seaplane, an N3N (a bi-plane known as "the yellow peril") off the Severn River. The David Taylor Naval Ship Research and Development Center began operation in 1908, and soon became a major employer of Arnold residents. The Naval Radio Transmitter Facility with its Eiffel-like towers was conceived during World War I when Germany threatened to cut communications cables between the U.S. and Europe. The towers were used for communication with the Atlantic fleet during World War II. With the advent of satellite communications, the towers were obsolete and, except for three kept for historical purposed, were torn down.


Young Adult 1930s and 40s


The transition to adulthood can be a period of growth and accomplishment, especially when youth have the resources they need to navigate this process. The emerging communities of Arnold were certainly not lacking in family support, connections, and opportunity.

The nation began to pull out of the depression, as did the residents of Arnold. Farmers were still fairly self-supporting, and the city of Baltimore was rapidly becoming an economic center. The U.S. Naval Academy became a major source of employment for those who wished to leave farming. Another positive event was the building of Governor Ritchie Highway, a straight line between Baltimore and Annapolis. Now the Broadneck Peninsula had two ways to reach Baltimore easily.

Local businesses began to develop. Among those businesses was a garage, called by various names as ownership changed, but remaining on the same spot on Baltimore and Annapolis Road. Bunker's Well Drilling Company was another local business. Many of the houses along Church Road were the Sears and Roebuck mail order houses, which Mr. Smith, a local contractor, ordered and built. Christian Rocklitz was hired to build a new school at Arnold, plus two succeeding additions. Local country stores included Haneke's store at the corner of Church Road and Jones Station Road, Biesecker's on B & A Road, Fishpaw's on B & A Road, and Arnold's Store at the intersection of B & A Road and Old County Road.


Lurty Dull had a general store at Dull's Corner (intersection of St. Margaret's Road and old B and A Road) . Grafton Duvall had a blacksmith shop at St. Margaret's and Old Mill Bottom Roads and beyond that, Macey's shop and cannery. The Labrot Race Track (now Revell Downs community) was located between Persimmon Point Road and Bayhead Road.

Over on the Magothy side of Arnold watermen brought their catch to Haas Seafood. John Haas and then his son, John, Jr. could accommodate all kinds of fishing boats at their pier on Deep Creek. What is now Deep Creek Restaurant began as Baker's; then Becker's. then Captain Clyde's. Captain Clyde and his wife sold it to the present owners, and now Capt. Clyde runs a fishing charter boat docked next door.

Mago Vista Beach became a popular watering hole in Arnold. The recreational area of Mago Vista Beach was developed by owner, Robert Benson, and included a merry-go-round, small roller-coaster, an alligator pond, and a trolley ride on a track around the property. There were also two bath houses and a dance pavilion. No alcoholic beverages were allowed on the premises, and many churches held their picnics there. It is said that old Mrs. Benson patrolled the parking lot herself, to be sure no "hanky-panky" was going on.




There was a luncheonette establishment which also sold gasoline at the foot of the Severn River Bridge, on a site now occupied by the Severn Inn. A building last known as the Arnold Pharmacy stood at the corner of Arnold Road and Ritchie Highway. This site had been known by other names such as Brookwood Dairy Store, Mayer's, and The Canopy Restaurant. Features were a soda fountain in the back and slot machines.



Arnold Pharmacy c. 1940

In 1941 the state bought a privately owned ferry service which operated from the end of King George Street in Annapolis to Matapeake on the eastern shore. The Annapolis terminal was moved to Sandy Point. This location was more convenient for the traveler, but increased congestion on the roads in Arnold when cars had to line up to wait for the next ferry.


Arnold men organized the Arnold Volunteer Fire Department in 1943, and returning servicemen as well as newcomers to Arnold manned the fire equipment. There were no fire hydrants in Arnold, so the firemen filled a tank truck with water for the fire. Later the truck was used to fill swimming pools.



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Arnold Comes of Age Post World War II


After World War II a great change took place in Arnold and Anne Arundel County. The national trend toward suburbia had begun. Encouraged by government-sponsored housing loans and much improved highway systems, people could now afford to work in the city and have a short commute to "the good life" in the country. The suburban sprawl began creeping down Ritchie Highway toward Arnold. There was land available, and no zoning laws to control development. Truck farming was on the decline; and farmers, whose land was in great demand, began selling to developers. As many as 100 building permits were being issued per day. In 1952 the first Comprehensive Zoning was adopted, and the land on four corners of the Arnold Road intersection with Ritchie Highway was zoned commercial.


Arnold Elementary School fifth and sixth graders published a booklet called "Getting to Know Your Community" in 1953, in which the students report;

Arnold began as a community of privately built and individually owned

homes, varying from very small one-story bungalows to small two-story
houses of five or six rooms. However, it is now experiencing a rapid rise
of new housing developments, known as Belvedere Heights, Rupert Manor,
and Terrace Gardens. These are separate frame dwellings, each with its
own yard, sewerage system, and water supply. The only settlement with a
community water system is Pines-on-Severn. All the communities have
electricity and provide telephone service to those who desire it. Only a
rather small area is served by the gas line, although bottled gas may be had
in any part of Arnold.

Although Arnold does not have a resident physician or dentist at the present

time, we are looking forward to having Dr. de Quavade open an office in the
building next to the Post Office.

The Arnold area is largely rural, and therefore the problem of garbage

disposal is a relatively unimportant one. Most people have enough property to
dispose of their own rubbish.

In 1953, with the opening of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and US Route 50 leading to the more rural Eastern Shore, Arnold was embraced by two major highways. One highway going east and west and one highway going north and south split the Broadneck peninsula both ways. And Arnold began to “come of age.” Planned residential developments took the place of farms. Controlling growth became a primary concern to the citizens of the Arnold area. The residents of Arnold wanted desperately to preserve their quality of life. In 1959 representatives of local community associations met to form the Broadneck Council.


The old county commissioner form of government was unable to cope with the new demands of over-crowded schools, poor roads, lack of zoning, and inadequate sewage disposal and dependable water supply. Finally, in 1964, the voters of Anne Arundel County approved a new charter government replacing the county commissioners with a county executive and a county council.


The 1960s ushered in the period of unequaled population growth. Arnold became the site of bedroom communities for Baltimore and Washington. Because Arnold has no focal point, as well as its rural neighborly heritage, it has become very community oriented. Each community usually has a community association which plans activities around home and children. Names of the approximately thirty organized communities should indicate the "close to nature" feeling of the area. Those names like Bay Hills, Campus Green, Dividing Creek, Hunters Point, Moorings on the Magothy, Severnview, Shore Acres, Terrace Gardens, Twin Harbors express a certain feel for the land.


Arnold is home to Anne Arundel Community College. The college started with night classes enrolling 270 students at Severna Park High School in 1961. In 1967 the school moved to its 165 acre campus off College Parkway in Arnold. The school was awarded full accreditation in 1968. The campus now includes 230 acres with a current enrollment of 14,699 students.

Increasing from a one-room school at the corner of Baltimore and Annapolis Boulevard and Church Road in 1878, Arnold now has five elementary schools. There are also a middle school, a junior high school, and a senior high school. In addition, there are private pre-schools, elementary schools, and academies.

As a result of the 1952 zoning changes, the Arnold Road intersection now has 2 filling stations, a Safeway Store, 4 banks, a furniture store, and the Arnold Station shopping center, complete with a MacDonald's . Bay Hills Shopping Center and Cape St. Claire Shopping Center also supply Arnold with goods and services. Other individual businesses such as Special Beginnings Birth and Women's Center and the YWCA have established themselves on Baltimore and Annapolis Boulevard. Providence Center, Inc. has two locations in Arnold. One of the newest businesses is Neil McGarvey's Arnold Professional Pharmacy. Formerly at the Safeway pharmacy, Neil wanted to serve the customers better and be more personally helpful, so he opened his own business in Arnold Station shopping center.


According to the census bureau, Arnold has a total area of 13.4 square miles, of which 10.8 square miles of it is land and 2.6 square miles of it is water. The 2000 census reports 23,422 people living in Arnold. Combined with Cape St. Claire's 7,878 year-round residents, the Arnold portion of Broadneck supports 31,300 people. Twenty three churches are listed in the phone book. At least 45 doctors practice in Arnold. There are 12 marinas in Arnold. Broadneck Park is free and open to the public. Almost every organized community has a playground and/or community pool. The Baltimore Annapolis Trail connects Arnold with Annapolis and Severna Park.


Along with the improvements that growth has brought to Arnold, there is a downside. Miles of traffic back-ups on Ritchie Highway, Route 50 leading to and from the Bay Bridge, and the Severn River bridge create frayed tempers and late appointments. Schools are overcrowded and in need of repair, and uncontrolled storm water runoff is polluting our rivers. Once again, controlling growth is a prime consideration of the residents of Arnold. Community associations have banded together in such groups as Arnold Preservation Council, Growth Action Network, Magothy River Association, and Broadneck Federation of Community Associations to be watch dogs for the area. The groups monitor traffic, land use and development issues, encourage active stewardship of the Magothy and Severn Rivers, and support local small businesses.


Has Arnold come of age?


The lyrics of Michael Jackson's song "When I Come of Age," conjecture:
Will I be strong? Will I be mighty man?
Climb mountains if I can?
We'll do all the things we couldn't do before,
When I come of age.


Arnold communities might also conjecture:

What can we accomplish now?
No longer need for ox or plow.
What we need to do is plan
a future where our children can
enjoy the pleasures work has brought.
Neighbor helping neighbor,
Friendship in a time of need,
Rural heritage still there,
Future folks will want to share
the spirit of community.

                                    A.S.

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