The original owner of the land was John Addison, who was born in Westmorland, Britain, and came over in 1674. After working several years as a merchant and Indian trader in St. Mary’s, he acquired land patents in what would later become Prince George’s County. Addison was one of the leading figures in the formation of the county, taking part in the Protestant rebellion against Charles Calvert, third Lord Baltimore. He served as a member of the Associator’s Convention and then the Grand Committee of Twenty. After the overthrow of Calvert, he became a justice of the provincial court and then a member of the governor’s council. When Prince George’s County was created, he was named commander of the county militia and given the rank of colonel.
Hickory Ridge in Howard County | Hickory Ridge “is considered today one of the truly splendid homes built by the Maryland Ridgeleys,” Celia M. Holland wrote in her 1987 book “Old Homes and Families of Howard County, Maryland.” The 67-acre horse farm in Highland, Md., is listed at $9 million. (HomeVisit)
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After Addison’s death, part of his land was purchased by John Beall and later combined with other tracts to create a 572-acre tobacco plantation, which went to his son, Josias. Josias’s house was on the site of the present house, but it was destroyed in the early 19th century.
John H. Hardisty purchased the property in 1839 and built a side-hall, double-parlor plantation house, with two free-standing brick chimneys, that he named “Bellevue,” circa 1840. Hardisty farmed the plantation for nearly 30 years. When he turned 60, he gave up farming. Having previously sold off part of the plantation to a neighbor, Hardisty made a deal with Henrietta and Thomas Marshall. He agreed to exchange his 425-acre plantation for their Upper Marlborough hotel, Marlborough House. For the rest of his life, Hardisty ran one of the prominent hotels in the county seat.
The Marshalls never lived at Bellevue and soon defaulted on their mortgage payments. The plantation went through a series of short-term owners until the Rev. Rudolph Menk and his family moved to Bellevue from Illinois in 1897. The Lutheran minister served several congregations in Illinois before health problems and the deaths of two of his children from diphtheria pushed him to resign from the ministry. While in Accokeek, Menk often filled vacancies at the Methodist and Episcopal churches.
The Menks remained at Bellevue until 1938. The property changed hands three more times, and parts of it were sold off over the years until the current owner purchased it almost 40 years ago.
Now 10.2 acres, the property includes 2½ acres of woods, through which a branch of the Mattawoman Creek runs. Three outbuildings — a guesthouse, an orangery and an office — were added. The four-bedroom, three-bathroom, 2,759-square-foot main house retains its Greek revival interior details.
The estate is on the market for $649,000.