The Story Of Our Historic Annapolis Bed and Breakfast
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The Annapolitan Bed and Breakfast was built in 1870 for a large family that included nine children. The architectural style is considered a typical “four square farm house.” The farm house was built about one mile outside of historic downtown Annapolis and included land that stretched down West Street and back to what is now Forest Drive. The farm mainly grew a variety of vegetables. At the time, West Street (now a paved major road in and out of Annapolis) was a dirt road that farmers, workers and visitors traveled upon. The residence across the street was a horse farm, whose property stretched back to what is now the Naval Academy.
The Annapolitan farm was incredibly successful in part, because it was located inside the marker that required farmers and merchants to pay a tariff on goods they wished to sell at the downtown market. The produce and dairy products from the Annapolitan farm were not taxed, making it more profitable for their farm than those farms located outside the marked boundary.
As the town of Annapolis began to sprawl with development, the farm owners began to divide the land into plots and gave it to family members. Soon after, the farm home began to serve a new purpose. Employment on the eastern shore of Maryland was very low in comparison to the western shore. For residents of the eastern shore who did not earn a living as fishermen or oystermen, odds of securing a job were low. The solution for those workers included finding work in the bustling city of Annapolis, as it was busy with development. Before the Bay Bridge was built however, the only way to travel to and from the eastern shore was via ferry, which was quite expensive. Migrant workers could not afford to travel back and forth on a daily basis, so the Annapolitan evolved into a home for migrant workers who stayed in Annapolis during the week and then returned to the eastern shore on weekends.
The Annapolitan later offered single room apartments before it became an assisted living facility. It eventually became a single family home again, before current owners John Holt and Joetta Smith purchased the building. After much research, John and Joetta discovered the original structure was called “The Annapolitan.” They purchased the rights to use the name, and to this day the Annapolis Bed and Breakfast bears its original name.