THE OXFORD SEAL


A symbol of Oxford's former greatness turned up in the late 1950s. The seal of Oxford as a port of entry, which had been used to stamp official papers, had been missing since shortly after 1866, when the town lost its port of entry status. Meanwhile, an official seal for the Town of Oxford had been designed and purchased in 1879.

In 1949 Richard Stearns, a member of the art staff of the Baltimore News Post and a collector of Indian relics, was in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, to view the Indian collection of Archibald Crozier, a noted antiquarian. Crozier quite incidentally showed him what he called an "interesting Maryland item"--a leaden disc about the size of a silver dollar and twice as thick, bearing the words, "Maryland: Port of Oxford," and a picture of a two-masted eighteenth century schooner under sail. It was the ancient Port of Oxford seal, missing for 75 years. Crozier said it had been given to him by a friend, but he had no idea how it had come into the friend's hands. At Stearn's request, it was presented to the Maryland Historical Society in Baltimore. The seal is back home and now resides in the Oxford Museum.

Excerpted from Dickson J. Preston's book: Oxford: The First Three Centuries.
Historical Society of Talbot County, 1984