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Yesteryears: History of Dennings begins with arrival of James Denning around 1800 |

Yesteryears: History of Dennings begins with arrival of James Denning around 1800

At the intersection of Marston and Dennings roads near Taylorsville lies the small community of Dennings. It began with the arrival of James Denning from County Donegal, Ireland, about 1800. On July 1, 1805, in Baltimore County, he married Elizabeth Steele, widow of John Steele, who died in 1803.

Before his death, John Steele owned property on the old line dividing Baltimore and Frederick counties. The Baltimore County 1798 tax list showed Steele with 30 acres of the tracts Hawkins Fancy and The Spike including a log house and a tavern. In 1814, James Denning bought the property from James and Robert Steele, heirs of John.


By 1819 enough people lived in the area to establish a post office. Notice of it appeared in the March 26, 1819 edition of The Westminster Chronicle and Weekly Advertiser. J. Denning at Denning’s Post Office was listed as an agent for this very early newspaper.

Sometime after 1825 Denning built a two-story stone house to replace the earlier one of logs. In talking with the late Billy Yohn, who was born in the house and owned it up until his death earlier this year, I tried to ascertain if the stone house was built around the original log one. He said he had found no indication of that.

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