Declared a National Historic Landmark in 1971, the William Paca House and Garden are located in the historic district of Annapolis. The grounds are two acres of serene beauty that were restored to their original grandeur by using archaeology and the backdrop of a 1772 painting of Paca by Charles Wilson Peale. Although there were many others, Paca’s is the only colonial garden in Annapolis that underwent a process of restoration of such extent. Administered by the Historic Annapolis Foundation, it is open to the public.
William Paca served three terms as Maryland’s Governor and became one of nation’s founding fathers by signing the Declaration of Independence. A Renaissance man, Paca served as the chief architect for the Georgian design of his home, which was built from 1763 to 1765. The house has also been restored, and you may take a guided tour of the interior. Paca’s addition of a beautiful brick-walled garden completed his masterpiece.
Terraces were a common component of gardens in this region of Chesapeake Bay. The crowning feature was the topmost terrace, which served as a platform upon which hosts and hostesses entertained their guests as they gazed upon the grounds. The levels below were arranged in parterres, geometric designs that took shape through the careful arrangement of flowerbeds.
A bridge decorated with Chinese-inspired latticework spans a small pond and leads to Paca’s Summerhouse. It was the garden’s focal point. During pleasant spring and summer days, Paca and his family entertained their guests from the top floor as they gazed down upon the garden. As picturesque gardening was the fashion post mid 18th Century, the Summerhouse was located in an area of Paca’s property called “the Wilderness”. Paths snake between intricate arrangements of a wide variety of plants.as
A B&B Nearby
A self-guided tour of garden and a guided tour of the house’s interior are both available, and admission ranges from $5 to $10. Open every day, the William Paca House and Garden is a very short walk from Gibson’s Lodgings, a historic inn located in downtown Annapolis. Call us to reserve your bed and breakfast room at our toll free number 877-330-0057. We’ll be very happy to serve you and your family throughout the year.