The old Scotland Post Office building has been placed on this year’s list of Maryland endangered historic properties.
The small post office building sat behind a U.S. Postal Service trailer in southern St. Mary’s County for many years. The trailer was removed after the lease expired in 2011 and Scotland’s post office was consolidated with the one in Ridge nearby. But the little old building, constructed in 1946, remains in Scotland and is not in good condition.
County government has issued a demolition permit for the building to be torn down, said Gracie Brady, historic preservation planner with the St. Mary’s County Department of Land Use and Growth Management. The 8.8-acre property has a home on it and was recently sold, though land records do not yet show the new owner. The last owner, Timothy Day, wanted to donate the old post office to be moved for preservation.
If the building were to be moved, it would have to be taken apart, board by board, and reassembled, Brady said.
“The original little post office, it’s no bigger than a shed,” Brady said. “It’s a shell, that’s what’s left.”
The floor has rotted out and there isn’t anything inside. All the old post office boxes are gone.
Brady estimated it would cost about $10,000 to move the building piece by piece.
The Scotland Post Office building went up in 1946, Brady said, after it moved out of a nearby store, now called Buzzy’s Country Store. Some time after 1990, a trailer was brought in to replace the small post office and was put right next to it, using a portable toilet.
“This building is significant because it shows the modest size of early post offices, which served as a place for neighbors to socialize when they picked up their mail,” said Preservation Maryland, which now has listed 74 historic sites as endangered during the last seven years.
Today’s population in Scotland is 313 people, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
J. Scott Ridgell tried in 2010 to get the Scotland Post Office moved to the country store that used to be his father’s and that he now runs. But when the postal service lease with Day expired the next year it was moved to the Ridge Post Office, keeping its ZIP code — 20687. Scotland’s post office was first established in 1882.