History of the Evergreen

The Trimble Family: 
Early Settlers in Mountain Maryland

nTrimbles descended from the Turnbulls, a Scottish border clan

qOriginal family name was Rule, changed to Turnbull by King Bruce in the early 1300s when a young Rule lad saved the King from a charging bull

qTurnbulls migrated to Northern Ireland in the early 1600s, changing their name to Trimble

nFive Trimble brothers came to Philadelphia from Armagh, Ireland in the 1730s, following in the footsteps of other Trimbles

qFour of the five migrated to the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia

qJames and David were surveyors (and their progeny also became surveyors, acquiring land in Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio, and out west)


One of David’s sons, John Trimble (Sr.), migrated past the line of 21 forts established by George Washington along the south branch of the  Potomac, settling on Federal Hill (near Eckhart) by the early 1780s

The Trimbles Acquire More Land on Federal Hill

qMilitary Lots were awarded to those fighting in the Revolutionary War or could be purchased by early settlers

qJohn (Sr) was listed as a settler on the 1788 list of Military Lot recipients


By the time of his death in 1823, John Sr’s son, John Jr, had expanded the settlement to 287 acres, had sired 11 children, and had purchased at least one slave

      Per Allegany County Land Records, Volume V, page 475, on 1/24/1806, a Bill of Sale was recorded by which William McMahon of Allegany County sold John Trimble for $200, one Negro girl named Nell. 


By 1839, two of John Jr’s children, Joseph Arnold and Henry, had purchased the claims of all but one sibling (Enoch), entered into a partnership, and cleared much of Federal Hill for farming and raising cattle and sheep

Military Lot Deed 3393:
Awarded to John Trimble Sr in 1791

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These 50 acres became the site of the first Trimble family home

The Evolution of Evergreen:
The Ridgelys and the Winters

nWhile the Trimbles were acquiring land and farming on a large portion of Federal Hill, William Ridgely was acquiring land on another part of the Hill

nIn 1822, George Winter purchased 174 acres from Ridgely, which included both a log cabin and a large stone foundation barn that had been built circa 1780

nGeorge built a two story stone addition to the log cabin that included a stone fireplace kitchen in the basement, a double parlor on the 1st floor and two bedrooms on the 2nd floor

nGeorge then converted the property into a plantation with out buildings, orchards, sheep and cattle, as well as a gatehouse


George’s brother John married Joseph Arnold’s sister, Easter Hester Trimble and they lived with George on the plantation

The Trimbles Acquire “Evergreen”

nMeanwhile, in 1858, as the Winters ran their plantation, Trimble brothers Joseph Arnold and Henry continued to acquire land and jointly purchased 264 acres of the Ridgely Estate

nAfter the Emancipation Proclamation, the loss of slave labor apparently resulted in the Winters deciding to sell their home, which was acquired by Joseph Arnold and Enoch in 1869

qJoseph Arnold married Mariah Evans and remained in the homestead on the former Ridgely Estate where he then raised his family


The Winter plantation (now consisting of 181.5 acres) remained vacant for over a decade until Joseph Arnold’s son Winfield Scott Trimble cleaned up the home and site and convinced his father to deed the property to him.  This is the land that would become Evergreen.

The Evolution of Evergreen:
From Plantation to Homestead

nWinfield spent a total of 13 years expanding and remodeling the Winter plantation.  He:

qTore down what remained of the Ridgely cabin

qMoved the entrance to the front of the house and built a large center hallway

qAdded a hand-carved walnut stair railing (from trees on the property)

qCreated a large kitchen and dining room on the main floor

qAdded four bedrooms upstairs (for a total of six)

qBuilt two porches that wrapped around the front and side entrances (one on the first floor, one on the second)

qResurrected the orchards, planted 13 varieties of evergreen trees, and renamed the new homestead Evergreen

The Evolution of Evergreen:
From Cabin to Plantation to Homestead

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Coal Mining on Federal Hill:
100 Years Ago and Today

nTrimbles have mined coal for over 100 years

qWhen Joseph Arnold died in 1897 his mineral rights on 661 acres were passed on in shares to 7 heirs


Henry Trimble’s 250 acres of mineral rights were passed on to his only living heir, Mary Ellen Engle


Both properties became part of a major “Big Vein” coal mining project that occurred in the early 1900s

qWinfield provided the land for the living quarters for the miners

qWinfield also allowed his property to be used to transport the coal, including hosting the rails and switches from deep in the mine to an inclined plane and bull wheel that lowered the coal to the C&P Railroad

nStrip mining projects continue today on nearby acreage previously owned by Joseph Arnold

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