HOT HOUSE: Bohemia Manor Farm, Chesapeake City, Md. 21915
A 1661 land grant property from Lord Baltimore, Cecil Calvert. Three hundred and sixty-eight tillable acres, waterfowl impoundments, miles of river frontage and stables, brick Georgian manor house built in 1920 and extensively modernized, with 11 bedrooms, five full and three half baths: $11,300,000
What: Augustine Herman, noted Czech cartographer, was deeded this property by Lord Baltimore in exchange for creating the first map of the entire Chesapeake Bay coastline. It was part of a larger parcel that included most of the Delmarva Peninsula, and he named it after his homeland of Prague, Kingdom of Bohemia. Herman’s grave is on the property. The farm stayed in the family (Bayard) for many generations, and figures prominently in Maryland history. In 2003 it went out of the family for the first time in 350 years, to Shane Flynn, former vice chairman of MBNA.
It’s quite a place. Impressive, if not period, the Georgean architecture is a respectful reference to the property’s historic legacy. There’s a grand ballroom, period wall coverings, lovely fireplaces and gourmet kitchen with a stunning blue Viking range. Rooms are large and comfortable, all beautifully furnished and maintained. Designed to entertain large hunting parties, the house also boasts state-of-the-art gun storage and temperature-controlled game storage rooms. Views of the water and fields are spectacular — the farm is a testament to the natural beauty of the Chesapeake Bay.
Where: North and east, via Pulaski Highway, to Rt 213S (Augustine Hermann Highway). Another 10 miles to Bohemia Manor Farm Road. About an hour and a half from Baltimore. Chesapeake City is a pretty town, population 787, with a few tavern style restaurants, B&B’s and a history museum.
Would Suit: Historian and bon vivant (Newt?), who entertains corporate clients and for whom this farm is a toy among many (Calista?). Fan of game dinners.
Why: Incredible beauty of the land and water. Fascinating history. Awesome hunting parties.
Why Not: Wouldn’t ya think that for $11 million someone could put in a row of boxwoods and a couple of trees? There’s no landscaping, and the house, while suitably grand, could use some connection to the land around it – as it is, it just sits there.
NB: Real estate website Curbed noted last year that the listing touts approval for 15 building sites. Realtor’s brochure reads, “opportunity for possible donation of development rights.” You choose…
Contact: Heidi Krauss Real Property Brokerage. heidikrauss.com 410.329.9898