Sotterley Plantation’s rich
history spans three centuries, and over 20 buildings
located on the site’s 94 acres help to bring its
many stories to life for our guests and visitors.
The care of these unique structures, and the
collections housed within, is central to the tenant
of preservation in Sotterley’s mission.
The buildings and grounds at
Sotterley are under perpetual easement from the
Maryland Historical Trust and the Maryland
Environmental Trust. Sotterley is dedicated to
adhering to the Secretary of the Interior’s
Standards for Rehabilitation when addressing
restoration and preservation needs, but with so many
buildings and collection pieces under its care,
Sotterley faces constant challenges as it seeks to
maintain and preserve them.
With buildings dating from the
18th, 19th and 20th centuries, Sotterley faces
ongoing maintenance costs and varying preservation
needs. There is always more work to be done than
Sotterley can carry out with its limited resources;
thus, this costly work can often only be
accomplished through the philanthropy and generosity
of caring individuals and organizations.
When maintenance needs are met, more
drastic restoration measures can often be eliminated
or reduced. Donating to maintenance efforts such as
re-staining roofs, painting, HVAC system upgrades,
pest and termite control, etc. allows Sotterley to
forestall many more drastic preservation measures.
Restoration of aging structures is sometimes
inevitable, however, and experts are then employed
to ensure that these fragile and unique buildings
are preserved with as much of their original fabric
as possible. With every new restoration effort, a
greater understanding of Sotterley and the people
who lived here is also uncovered, and these efforts
are only made possible with the help of generous
grants and donations.
Collections suffer greatly
from the ravages of time, use, light, humidity,
temperature fluctuations, mold, or pests. With
no resources in Sotterley’s operational budget
to conduct regular assessments and take measures
to conserve or restore collections pieces, it is
only through generous donations and grants that
this work can be accomplished.
To learn how you can help,
or call 301-373-2280.