Originally called the "Talbot Court House" an act of legislation in 1788, renamed the town and county seat Easton. The early Federal period found the Court House, circa 1711-1712, serving the Maryland General Court and later became known as the "Capitol of the Eastern Shore".
Quakerism began to impact the town in the late 1600s when the Third Haven Meeting House, circa 1682-1684, was constructed. The House stands today as the oldest religious building still in use in the United States and the earliest dated building in Maryland.
Easton's experienced its first building activity following the War of 1812. Steamboats started plying the waters of Tred Avon River around 1816 and utilized Easton Point until their demise in 1932.
The Christ Church was built in 1840-44. A stone edifice in the early English style, having a tower surmounted with a spire, the granite parish house was built in 1890.
Disastrous fires, the railroad and historical preservation have all contributed to Easton's architectural evolution. The combination of Colonial, Federal and Victorian architecture creates remarkable streetscapes throughout the town. This style of architecture represents a way of life rapidly disappearing in many regions of the United States. The Talbot County Historic Preservation Commission, appointed by the Talbot County Council, continues to work with the community and residents to save our historic traditions and preserve our architectural treasures for future generations.
The Historical Society of Talbot County provides a walking tour of Easton which reveals public buildings dating back to 1711 and houses of architectural significance dating to the late 18th century. The tour reveals historic places of worship, old taverns and a mill. The site on which the Tidewater Inn stands today has been home to an inn for over 200 years.
Traditionally, Easton has served as the hub of business activity in the county since its earliest days. Today, it is known for its quality education system, medical facilities, businesses opportunities, county airport, award-winning restaurants and accommodations, boutiques, specialty shops and unique shopping centers.
Exploration of the past can be enjoyed at the Historical Society of Talbot County at their Museum headquarters, the James Neall House, the Joseph Neall House or the Museum Shop. Well-trained and knowledgeable Docents provide tours through the historic district. The Maryland Room of the Talbot County Free Library can also provide a wealth of information on the history of the area.
The Arts can be enjoyed at the Historic Avalon Theatre, recognized by Governor Parris Glendenning as the "Maryland's perfect example of smart growth". Built in 1921 as a movie/vaudeville house, the restored art deco theatre was renovated in the late 1980s with state-of-the-art sound, lighting, and comfort. The 400 seat theatre serves as year-round non-profit performing arts center with diverse programs, musical concerts, films, seminars, plays and community events.
The Academy Art Museum is housed in a renovated 1820 schoolhouse and exhibits the best of local, regional and national artists. The Academy's permanent collection includes works by many of art history's most recognized figures of the 19th and 20th centuries. In additional to the permanent collection, the Museum hosts over 200 visual and performing arts programs annually.