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charles carrollEnlarge Charles Carroll of Carrollton (1737-1832)

When Charles Carroll laid the cornerstone for the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad near Baltimore on July 4, 1828, he was the guest of honor, a tribute to the high esteem in which he was held by Marylanders and the nation at large. Now in his nineties, he was the last surviving signer of the Declaration of Independence, and in 1789 he had represented Maryland in the first United States Congress convened under the Constitution. Carroll was always a firm supporter of internal improvements that promised to benefit his state, and it was not surprising that he was a major stockholder of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad and a member of its first board of directors. Two years after the laying of the cornerstone, this veteran of America's political revolution was on hand for yet another landmark event in the country's transportation revolution-an inaugural ride on the B&O's first completed segment of track.

James Barton Longacre (1737-1832) after Chester Harding
Engraving, 1830
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution