Anne St. Clair Wright

(1910 - 1993)

Anne St. Clair Wright was a founder of Historic Annapolis, Inc., today the Historic Annapolis Foundation. She served four terms as president, and later as chair and chair emeritus of the Board, and chair of the William Paca Garden Restoration Committee. The National Trust for Historic Preservation awarded her the Louise duPont Crowninshield Award (its highest award for historic preservation) for her vision, leadership and contributions that preserved and restored Annapolis' historic buildings, townscape and gardens.

Her unremitting intelligence was dedicated to Annapolis' preservation and was instrumental in preserving and using Annapolis landmarks to the advantage of the contemporary environment. As a result of her works, downtown Annapolis was the designated as a Historic District and a Registered National Landmark by Stewart Udall, secretary of the interior, in 1965.

Mrs. Wright held many civic volunteer offices, including: advisor for Maryland, National Trust for Historic Preservation; commissioner, Maryland Commission on the Capital City; director, Society for the Preservation of Maryland Antiquities; chairman of the Board, Preservation Action; member, Mid-Atlantic Regional Advisory Committee of the U.S. National Park Service; member, Committee of Twenty to establish goals and programs for the National Trust for Historic Preservation; director, Nature Conservancy; trustee, Maryland Environmental Trust; director, Southern Garden History Society; member at large, Garden Club of America; and member, Governor's Maryland Scenic Beauty Commission.

Among her accomplishments and awards in preservation and activism are an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Public Service from the University of Maryland, 1985; Society of American Travel Writers for Conservation, Preservation and Beautification, 1985; Garden Club of America Historic Preservation Medal, 1983; Citation from the Maryland House of Delegates for Outstanding Service in the Field of Preservation, 1979; Honorary Degree of Doctor of Humane Letters from Towson State University, 1975; Calvert Award from the Maryland Historical Trust, 1975; "Woman of the Year" Award from Maryland Colonial Society, 1975; Historic Annapolis, Inc. Athenian Award, 1972; Federated Garden Clubs of America Award, 1970; Louise duPont Crowninshield Award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation, 1968; American Institute of Architects, Chesapeake Bay Chapter, Award for Distinguished Work in Historic Preservation, 1968; Certificate of Distinguished Citizenship, Maryland, 1965.

Mrs. Wright was born in Newport News, Virginia in 1910. She studied at Mary Baldwin College in Staunton, Virginia, and the Maryland Institute of Fine Arts in Baltimore. She came to Annapolis as the daughter of a naval officer and later, the wife of U.S. Navy Captain Joseph M. P. Wright. The Wrights raised three sons, two who became naval officers and one who is a professor of anthropology. At the time of her death in 1993 she was still active in preservation issues.

Biography courtesy of the Maryland Commission for Women, 2009.

© Copyright Maryland State Archives, 2009