Prince George's County Department of Parks and Recreation
Marietta House Museum

History

Marietta is a 2 1⁄2-story brick Federal house, begun c. 1813, in a traditional I-house plan and  is an important example of a late Federal style brick house. The main block is five bays by two, and entrance is through the central bay of the south facade. Attached to the north of the main block at right angles is a two-story rear wing, built c. 1832, and attached to the west gable end is an L-shaped wing added in 1968. Marietta stands on terraced, landscaped grounds with two contemporary outbuildings: a brick law office and a stone and brick root cellar/harness storage room.

Marietta was built for Gabriel Duvall, one of Prince George's County's most outstanding citizens. Born in 1752, Duvall pursued a career of public service which lasted for more than 60 years. After serving in several positions during the Revolutionary War, he served in the Maryland House of Delegates, the United States Congress, the Maryland Supreme Court, and as Comptroller of the Treasury under Thomas Jefferson. Soon after 1812, when he was appointed by President James Madison to the U.S. Supreme Court, Duvall began construction of Marietta. Over the next 20 years he developed the 325-acre plantation, and constructed a substantial rear wing for added living space. He served on the Supreme Court until 1835; in January of that year he retired to spend the rest of his life at Marietta, where he died in 1844. Marietta remained the residence of his heirs until 1902.

The property now consists of 25 acres of lawn and woodlands, and the grounds boast two County Champion trees and lovely old boxwood. The Society of Mareen Duvall Descendants has relocated the family graveyard from its original location to the serene surroundings at Marietta. 

Marietta is open to the public as a Prince George’s County history museum and offers exhibits, lectures, events and programs covering 300 years of county history. Marietta is also home to the Natural and Historical Resources Division Library of County History.