In the War of 1812 gallery of the Maryland Historical Society is exhibited a 13-inch British mortar shell with the following inscription: “This Bomb Shell Fell at the Feet of George Baxley, Private, Washington Artillery, Maryland Militia, during the Bombardment of Fort McHenry, September 12, 1814. Presented by J. Brown Baxley, Oct. 13, 1890.”
George Baxley (1771-1848) was born on Sept. 18, 1771 at Jerusalem Mills on the Gunpowder River in Harford County, one of nine children of John and Mary (Merryman) Baxley. George along with his brothers John and Thomas enlisted in the Maryland Militia on May 31, 1794. George served in Captain John Berry’s company, the Washington Artillery, 1st Regt., Maryland Artillery during the Battle for Baltimore. After the war he displayed the shell at the Baxley Drug Store, where his descendants maintained for many years after his death on December 15, 1848 at the age of 77 years.
“During his life. Mr. Baxley filled several appointments of trust from the State and municipal governments, and his character, in every point of view, appeared worthy of respect and esteem.”
Sources: The Sun, December 16, 1848; Baxley Family Collection, PP90, Maryland Historical Society.