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About Us

The Historical Society of Kent County is a non-profit organization dedicated to the collection and preservation of documents and information that aid in the interpretation of all aspects of Kent County’s history and of its people. The Society shares this information through its research library, museum, programs, publications, and website in order to foster a knowledge and understanding of the shared heritage of all parts of our community. The Society supports and encourages the preservation of historic buildings and sites throughout Kent County. The Society is the only organization dedicated to keeping the record of all aspects of Kent County history and offers its resources to the residents and visitors. The Society is determined that the history of Kent County remains an integral part of its future, and seeks not only to preserve but promote local history in such a way that it enhances the sense of place for both residents and visitors of Kent County. The organization also facilitates preservation efforts whenever possible.

The Historical Society was founded in 1936 to preserve and disseminate information pertinent to local heritage. In 2014, the Society was gifted a building in the heart of historic downtown Chestertown by the family of Ellen Bordley Schottland, whose family operated a men’s clothing store there until the mid-1960s. Opened in 2015 as the Bordley History Center, the Center commands the principal corner of the Chestertown Historic District, sitting at High and Cross Streets immediately across from Fountain Park.  The Center houses the Society’s museum, gift shop, research library, and administrative offices.

The Board

The Society is a membership organization, governed by officers and directors elected by its members.  Officers are elected annually; directors are elected to staggered three-year terms. Historical Society of Kent County Board of Directors 2023-24  

Barbara Jorgenson, President

Victoria W. Smith, Vice President

George Corey, Treasurer

Erik Gulbrandsen, Secretary  

Robert Bryan, Jr.

LaMonte Cooke

Nivek Johnson

Erika Quesenbery Sturgill

Michelle Pilliod Carroll

Ashley Flory

Mary Alice Ball

The Staff

Maria Wood | Executive Director | | 410-778-3499

Joan Andersen | Librarian | | 410-778-3499

Carol Roe Combs | Administrative Assistant | | 410-778-3499

Lana Faber | Archivist | | 410-778-3499


History Lovers! We are in need of volunteers for a variety of tasks.  You can become involved in our mission of keeping Kent County history. Some of our ongoing volunteer opportunities include: Docent at the Bordley History Center: You don’t have to know about Kent County history to be a regular docent – you can learn as you go.  You just have to enjoy meeting people of all types and welcoming them to the Historical Society’s museum and gift shop. Grant writing:  Grants fund most of our projects. Can you help identify grant sources and write the grant application? Library tasks: We are in need of all library skill levels, from cataloging (easier than you may think, but does require computer skills) to indexing serials and publications to clipping articles. Genealogists Cemetery research: Our volunteers are updating cemetery records. Research:  If you have experience in conducting research, we are always in need of qualified volunteers to explore and document information on various topics. Special events and programs: We always welcome help with planning and with event execution. Project Coordinators: For those who have experience and time to take on project management, we have oral history and digitization projects waiting. Exhibit planners: We like our exhibits to change quarterly. Ideas and assistance are always needed and welcome. Outreach: We always welcome volunteers to staff a table for the Society at events. Or, think of a project of your own that you would like to pursue!  Please call us at 410-778-3499, or email


The Historical Society always welcomes new members.  You do not have to live locally to join; a number of our members support us in our efforts from afar.  If you are a resident, however, we hope you will not only become a member, but join us at our events and activities, or consider volunteering.  We offer a welcoming venue for community involvement for all ages. As a member, you will receive: *Unlimited personal use of our Genealogy and Local History Research Library by appointment *Discount on our Genealogical Research Services *Quarterly Members’ Newsletters *Discount on books in the museum gift shop *By Invitation Only Previews of our new exhibits *By Invitation Only Receptions with our guest lecturers *Preferred/reserved seating at our programs *Invitations to our Historic House Parties and other private events (some of these may have a charge but are offered only to members and their guests)   You may become a member by making a donation of any amount.  A donation of $25 is recommended for an individual, and a donation of $40 is recommended for a family.  Student memberships are free.

Register online securely now with Square or send your check to our office at P.O. Box 665, Chestertown, MD 21620.  Please include your email address as we communicate with our members primarily by email.

Students can receive a free, complimentary membership to the Historical Society. To attain membership, please fill out the student membership application.