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Accokeek, MD


Accokeek, MD

Accokeek is an unincorporated area and census-designated place (CDP) in Prince George's County, Maryland, United States, located about 8.5 miles southwest of Washington, D.C. The population was 7,349 at the 2000 census. It is home to Piscataway Park.

Accokeek is located at 38°40′20″N 77°1′5″W. Accokeek is located directly across the Potomac River from Mount Vernon, the home of President George Washington.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 23.4 square miles (61 km2), of which, 22.4 square miles (58 km2) of it is land and 1.0 square mile (2.6 km2) of it (4.31%) is water.

As of the census of 2000, the population density was 327.9 people per square mile (126.6/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 43.16% White, 47.60% African American, 0.52% Native American, 5.20% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 0.97% from other races, and 2.49% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.34% of the population. The average household size was 3.03 and the average family size was 3.33.

Captain John Smith was the first European to see the Accokeek area when he sailed up the Potomac River. Father Andrew White, an English Jesuit missionary, later visited the Indian village and chief in nearby Piscataway. English farmers and planters settled the area in the late 17th century, and Christ Episcopal Church was established in 1723. Marshall Hall was an outstanding colonial home southwest of Accokeek, in the river bottomlands near Bryans Road.

Henry and Alice Ferguson settled in Accokeek when they purchased "Hard Bargain Farm" overlooking the Potomac River in 1922, as a vacation retreat. Henry Ferguson (1882–1966), an Ivy League-educated man (Harvard and Yale), worked for the Geological Survey starting in 1911. Alice Leczinska Lowe Ferguson (1880–1951), wife of Henry Gardiner Ferguson, trained as a painter at the Corcoran School of Art in Washington, D.C, and had interests in archeology as well. Supposing it to be the site of the Moyaone (or Moyoane) Indian Village in Accokeek visited by Captain John Smith, during his early explorations of North America, in the 1930s Alice Ferguson initiated archeological excavations. She wrote papers on the Piscataway Indians. A recent source states that while the site is probably not the one described by Captain John Smith, it is nonetheless still important. In 1966, the Accokeek Creek Site was made a National Historic Landmark.

The median income for a household in the CDP was $79,419, and the median income for a family was $82,314. Males had a median income of $48,545 versus $39,016 for females. The per capita income for the CDP was $29,519. About 2.3% of families and 4.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.0% of those under age 18 and 4.0% of those age 65 or over.
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Demographics

As of the census[19] of 2000, there were 7,349 people, 2,423 households, and 1,952 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 327.9 people per square mile (126.6/km²). There were 2,562 housing units at an average density of 114.3/sq mi (44.1/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 43.16% White, 47.60% African American, 0.52% Native American, 5.20% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 0.97% from other races, and 2.49% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.34% of the population.

There were 2,423 households out of which 40.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 67.1% were married couples living together, 8.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 19.4% were non-families. 14.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 4.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.03 and the average family size was 3.33.

In the CDP the population was spread out with 27.8% under the age of 18, 6.6% from 18 to 24, 31.2% from 25 to 44, 26.2% from 45 to 64, and 8.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 97.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.5 males.

The median income for a household in the CDP was $79,419, and the median income for a family was $82,314. Males had a median income of $48,545 versus $39,016 for females. The per capita income for the CDP was $29,519. About 2.3% of families and 4.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.0% of those under age 18 and 4.0% of those age 65 or over.
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The Outdoors

The median income for a household in the CDP was $79,419, and the median income for a family was $82,314. Males had a median income of $48,545 versus $39,016 for females. The per capita income for the CDP was $29,519. About 2.3% of families and 4.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.0% of those under age 18 and 4.0% of those age 65 or over.

After World War II, Maryland Route 210, a new two-lane highway to Washington, D.C. opened rural Accokeek to settlement by commuters. It attracted a limited number of settlers, especially U.S. Naval scientists and other intellectuals who built contemporary-style homes in an ecologically protected restricted area of west Accokeek called the "Moyaone Reserve". It retains a rural scenic character still to this day. Some of these homes were designed individually by architect Charles Wagner, an early Moyaone resident whose family are still active in the community.

Not until about 1990 did large-scale housing developments come closer to Accokeek than Fort Washington, Maryland. That was shortly followed by a supermarket, public library, and improved bus transit. Plans to build a Wal-Mart were defeated by local activists.

The Federally run National Colonial Farm, and the adjacent but separate Hard Bargain (Ferguson Foundation) Farm, are educational facilities enjoyed by families and school groups throughout the year. They offer numerous living-history festivals, a fishing pier, avant-garde theater play performances, a colorful Oktoberfest, and environmental education through overnight camps.

In the 1990s, Maryland Route 228 was linked with Route 210, offering Accokeek residents faster access to shopping in the fast-growing city of Waldorf. The intersection of Route 210 and Route 228, is one of only a handful of continuous flow intersections in the United States.

Italian arms company Beretta opened a factory in Accokeek in the 1970s. It won a federal contract to produce pistols for the military in 1985.

Visitors and residents can enjoy nearby Accokeek Museums, Golf Courses and/or Botanical Gardens, including Piscataway Park, White Plains Regional Park & Golf Course, River Farm, Mount Vernon and Fort Washington Park.

The following 5 airports are located in or near Accokeek:
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Piscataway Park

Piscataway Park, located 20 miles (32 km) southwest of downtown Washington, D.C., near Accokeek, Maryland, protects Marshall Hall and the National Colonial Farm. The park is located across the Potomac River from George Washington's Mount Vernon estate.

Piscataway Park is named after Piscataway Creek, itself named for a historic Native American tribe. The park is home to bald eagles, beavers, osprey, and other wildlife and encompasses areas of wetland, meadow and woodland. It is administered by the National Park Service and is managed by National Capital Parks-East.

Henry and Alice Ferguson bought more than 100 acres (0.40 km2) of land in the area in 1928. It includes the area of Moyaone, a Native American Piscataway village last occupied in 1623. The Fergusons bought more property and encouraged friends to settle nearby, where they could protect the environment. After Alice's death in 1951, Ferguson created the Alice Ferguson Foundation, which administered the land. The foundation made arrangements to donate property to the National Park Service for parkland, a transaction completed in the 1960s. This both protected the environment, as well as the "historic viewshed" as seen from the Mount Vernon mansion, keeping the parkland as it was in George Washington's day, and preventing modern development along the shore of the river.

Piscataway Park is home to bald eagles, beavers, deer, foxes, ospreys, and many other species. To complement the surroundings, the park has, in addition to a public fishing pier and two boardwalks over fresh water tidal wetlands, a variety of nature trails, meadows, and woodland areas. The Park is also home to National Colonial Farm.

Elaine W. Sawyer, GRI, Broker/ Owner

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