Anne Arundel History

September 25, 2005

1737: The birth of Charles Carroll

Charles Carroll, a Maryland signer of the Declaration of Independence and a U.S. senator, was born in Annapolis on Sept. 19, 1737.

After an education in France, Carroll, a Roman Catholic of Irish descent, returned to Maryland at age 28 to a family-owned estate of 10,000 acres, Carrollton Manor, in Frederick County. Soon after, he married his cousin, Mary Darnall, in 1768. Over his lifetime, his land holdings encompassed between 70,000 and 80,0000 acres in Maryland, Pennsylvania and New York.

A staunch Federalist, he served in the first federal Congress as a senator from Maryland.

After the deaths of John Adams and Thomas Jefferson on July 4, 1826, he was the last living signer of the Declaration of Independence.

Carroll's last public act came two years later, on July 4, 1828, when he laid the cornerstone of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, for which he served on the board of directors. He died on Nov. 14, 1832, and is buried in his Doughoregan Manor Chapel in Ellicott City.

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