Upcoming Events

October 14, 2015 - 6:30pm
Join us we celebrate the 250th Anniversary of the Mason-Dixon Survey and the remounting of the Bird Transit. David S. Thaler, PE, LS, F.ASCE, F.NSPE and author of The Mystery of the Transit in the Tower, will recount the process of restoration and remounting of America's most historic scientific instrument, the Bird Transit, which was famously used by Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon in their iconic survey of the Delaware, Maryland, and Pennsylvania border. The Bird Transit will be on display at the Maryland Historical Society, as well as other documents from the Mason-Dixon Survey.

October 22, 2015 - 6:30pm
Join us as author and landscape historian, Mac Griswold relays her biography of a uniquely American place that has endured through wars great and small, through fortunes won and lost, through histories bright and sinister - and of the family that has lived there since its founding as a New England slave plantation three and a half centuries ago. The Manor is a historical narrative that tells the story of slavery, emancipation, racism, prejudice and silent prejudice in New England through a single piece of land. Based on years of archival and field research, as well as voyages to Africa, the West Indies, and Europe, The Manor is at once an investigation into forgotten lives and a sweeping drama that captures our history in all its richness and suffering.

October 29, 2015 - 5:00pm
The Young Defenders of the Maryland Historical Society are teaming up with the Young Members of the Center Club for a special happy hour and reveal party for the YD February Bash! Join us on October 29 at the Center Club to hear the exclusive on this year’s party theme.

October 31, 2015 - 10:30am
Explore the lives of the people who shaped Maryland history on this special Halloween tour of Green Mount Cemetery and the Maryland Historical Society. Join Mark Letzer, MdHS President and CEO, on a tour of our galleries to learn about the great Marylanders of the past, including Elizabeth Patterson Bonaparte, Enoch Pratt, and William Henry Rinehart. Following lunch, visitors will motorcade to Green Mount Cemetery to visit the graves of these and many other famous Marylanders. A walking tour along the historic paths under fall foliage will highlight the people, legends and lore surrounding one of Baltimore's historic cemeteries.

November 5, 2015 - 6:00pm
To modern eyes, the nineteenth century appears almost obsessed with the stages of grief and mourning as represented through the clothing of the bereaved. Such an attitude reveals more about twenty-first century attitudes and does not yield helpful or productive insights into the past. In fact, our nineteenth century forebears, through sheer necessity, had in a number of ways a healthier understanding and approach to the real pain associated with the death of loved ones and processing the loss afterwards. This lecture will explore the traditions and culture associated with mourning in the nineteenth century confers a greater understanding of their lives and teaches a few lessons to the modern inquirer.

November 7, 2015 - 10:00am
Around Mount Vernon Place, memorials in bronze and marble honor many slave-holders, such as George Washington, John Eager Howard, and Roger B. Taney, yet no statue recognizes the labor of the enslaved people who worked and lived in the neighborhood, for example like Richard Mack. Join us for a tour uncovering the lives of enslaved people and slave-owners through stories ranging from violent politics of the Civil War and the revolutionary shift that occurred during emancipation. Participants will meet at the Maryland Historical Society to tour the galleries, and then enjoy a walking tour around the Mount Vernon neighborhood with Baltimore Heritage.

November 7, 2015 - 8:30pm
Beginning in the 1940s, a mysterious individual began visiting Edgar Allan Poe’s original gravesite at Westminster Hall every year on the author’s birthday, January 19th. Later dubbed the “Poe Toaster,” the man began a tradition in which he would sneak into the cemetery at night while dressed in black clothing, a hat, and a white scarf. Upon arriving at Poe’s grave, the toaster would place 3 roses beside it before opening a bottle of cognac. The roses are believed to be in memory of the three individuals buried at the site of the Poe Monument: Poe, Maria Clemm, and Virginia Poe. After toasting Poe , the man would then place the bottle next to the grave before disappearing into the night. Sadly, the “Poe Toaster” has not appeared since 2009, but never fear, this long held Baltimore tradition will be reclaimed to honor the memory of the "Poe Toaster" this fall.

November 12, 2015 - 6:30pm
In partnership with Poe Baltimore, the caretakers of the Edgar Allan Poe House, lifelong Poe student and Baltimore native David F. Gaylin has assembled a collection of archival, rarely seen images to re-create a picture of the antebellum town that Poe walked through every day. Join us as David F. Gaylin lectures on his newly released book, Edgar Allan Poe’s Baltimore. Poe wrote his great works while living in several cities on the East Coast of the United States, and many cities lay claim, but Baltimore’s connection to the author is special. Edgar Allan Poe’s Baltimore is the first book to explore the poet’s life in this port city and in the quaint little house on Amity Street, where he once wrote. Light refreshments will be served.

November 14, 2015 - 10:00am
Commemorate the 150th Anniversary of the end of the Civil War by exploring the rich collections of the Maryland Historical Society and by learning about the experience of accused Confederate sympathizers who were imprisoned at Fort McHenry. Examine the divided loyalties of white and black Baltimoreans, some of whom participated in the Pratt Street Riot of 1861, while later providing material support or joining military units on either side of the conflict. The Maryland Historical Society’s research archives contain numerous original documents and images from the era, which participants can investigate with experts in the Student Research Center. Then visit Fort McHenry to study the political outcomes of Abraham Lincoln’s suspension of Habeas Corpus, which placed Baltimore under martial law for the duration of the war and resulted in the arrest of many prominent local figures, including Francis Scott Key’s grandson. Explore the Fort grounds with a National Park Service Ranger, to learn more about the prisoners, enjoy a hands-on educational activity and inspect the site’s Civil War-era buildings.

November 14, 2015 - 10:30am
Do you live or work in Baltimore? Interested in the buildings of the city? Visit the Maryland Historical Society and learn how to fully utilize the library’s resources. Senior Reference Librarian, Francis O’Neill, will walk participants through search strategies and introduce the Passano-O’Neill file -- the richest resource for Baltimore structures in the city! Library staff will also provide tips on how to find the needle in the haystack. See if we can find an original photograph of your building or block from the 900,000+ photographs in our collection! Light refreshments will be provided.