From 1852-1972, Locust Grove was the home of Samuel F. B. Morse, the inventor of the telegraph. The 180 acre property boasts a carriage house, ice house, trails, a flower and vegetable garden, and nature preserve. The house itself features a 15,000 furniture, decorative arts, and painting collection acquired by William and Martha Young (owners of the house after the Morse family). The Young's personal, professional, financial and business papers—including those of their son and daughter—are also preserved at the house, providing a glimpse into the life of a wealthy between the early 1870s-1975. The house was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1966 and was declared a National Historic Landmark two years earlier.
In the 1770s, a man named Henry Livingston built the first house on the estate and named it after the black locust trees on property. Livingston sold the estate to a young couple who then sold it to Morse in 1847. Morse began working on the telegraph in 1832 but it wasn't until 1844 that he achieved his goal. His famous words sent from Washington D.C. to Baltimore on May 24 of that year—What hath God wrought!—solidified his claim to be the inventor of the telegraph (there were others who asserted they invented it but Morse is person accredited with the achievement).