Lost Town of London
South River
Anne Arundel County, Maryland

"London Town is the story of Everyman. And it is indeed a tale worth telling, warts and all, for it is the real story of colonial Maryland and America in microcosm. " --Donald G. Shomette-- "Hooray for London Town"

London proved much more robust, developing into an active port town with 40 to 50 developed lots with dwellings, artisan shops, warehouses, and public places.  A number of planned streets connected the lots and buildings with ferry landings and wharves.  Craft specialists in town included shipwrights, rope makers, carpenters and joiners, a tailor, a staymaker, and a wigmaker.  Attaining its zenith by the 1720s and 1730s, London began its long decline in the 1750s, becoming little more than a small cluster of buildings around a ferry landing by the end of the American Revolution.  Local landowners consolidated the one hundred or more lots into three or four farms by the early 19th century, one of which became the site of the Anne Arundel County almshouse.   Lost Towns Project: Introduction to London Town



Letters from London: Sheriff Rawlings expected trouble; he found it

Rumney's Tavern
In 1709 one Edward Rumney, shipwright, was granted a license to operate a tavern in London [Town on the South River in Anne Arundel County, Maryland]. [This urban tavern, the Rumney/West tavern, operated during the last decade of the 17th century and the first third of the 18th century.]  He may, however, have been occupying the lot along Scott Street in the 1690's. In 1711 he mortgages the lot to Charles Carroll, but still operates the tavern, and even makes improvements to the structures on the lot. In 1715 he is listed as the South River Ferry Master as well as innkeeper. His prosperity is short lived, however, for in 1720, Charles Carroll, Jr. forecloses the mortgage. Carroll lets the lot and tavern to Stephen West, Sr., selling it to him in September 1723. At some point between 1730 and 1750, the tavern ceases operation.

Extracted from Taverns and Urban Living in the Early 18th Century Chesapeake:  A Comparison of Two Assemblages from Anne Arundel County, Maryland by Al Luckenbach, Patricia N. Dance, and Carolyn Gryczkowski


London Towne History

Lot 87

Colonial Town Uncovered

Lost Towns Project

1684 Londontown plat map



Three-dimensional images based on drawings of reconstructed objects from Rumney’s Tavern