Upcoming Events

October 30, 2014 - 6:00pm
Maryland The Free? State: November 1, 1864, Why Then?, and Why is it Worth Remembering? Larry Gibson, Professor at University of Maryland Carey School of Law, will focus on the ongoing struggle for civil rights and freedom after the constitutional change in November 1864. Ed Papenfuse, Former Maryland State Archivist and Commissioner of Land Patents, will discuss the uncertainty of the new provision in the Constitution and explain why the act of writing as a constitutional provision is as important to remember today as it is to revive the Nation's interest in attending to the constitutional guarantees of citizenship to all who seek asylum with us, that are so central to our democracy today.

November 1, 2014 - 9:00am
Join us for the William Voss Elder Memorial Symposium on Maryland Decorative Arts on November 1. William Voss Elder III was a curator, furniture scholar, architectural historian and a student of all Maryland related history. After completing undergraduate studies at Princeton and graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania he accepted the position of registrar at the White House in 1961. Soon after this he became the second curator of the White House and helped Jacqueline Kennedy with the redecoration of the President's House, being instrumental in adding many valued pieces to the White House collection. After his curatorial work at the White House during the Kennedy administration, Mr. Elder joined the Baltimore Museum of Art as curator of decorative arts and worked in that museum for over thirty five years until his retirement but stayed involved for many years after that. His many contributions to the field of architecture, decorative and fine arts as well as numerous publications made him one of the most esteemed and highly regarded historians in Maryland.

November 1, 2014 - 10:00am
We invite you to explore the lives of the people who shaped Maryland history through a special, Halloween-time tour of Greenmount Cemetery and the Maryland Historical Society. In an engaging presentation led by Historian Vince Vaise, some of the most famous long-deceased Marylanders will be brought to life through a special tour of the Historical Society's special exhibitions and their final resting place in Greenmount Cemetery. This "tour du force" of Maryland history will include riveting tales of larger-than-life figures including charismatic Betsy Patterson Bonaparte, Baltimore banker Alex Brown, the curious inventor Ross Winans, circus hero Johnny Eck and the world's most infamous Presidential assassin, John Wilkes Booth. Included are other noteworthy Marylanders who's stories have been lost to history, such as John Pendleton Kennedy - hero of the War of 1812, noted lawyer, statesman and early promoter of the telegraph, and Robert Goodloe Harper who once said, "Millions for defense, but not one cent for tribute!" Following a delicious lunch, the visitors will motorcade to Greenmount Cemetery to visit the graves of these famous people. A lively, narrated walking tour along the historic paths under fall foliage will highlight the people, legends and lore surrounding one of Baltimore's historic cemeteries. Visitors will enjoy a poetry reading, a historic eulogy and a performance of our state song, "Maryland My Maryland." Discover the "spirit" of Maryland history at this special, seasonal program!

November 5, 2014 - 6:00pm
A new book of drawings and letters by a former Baltimore resident who joined the Confederate Army and was imprisoned at Point Lookout prisoner-of-war camp in St. Mary’s County, MD, has been released by the Friends of the Maryland State Archives. I Am Busy Drawing Pictures: The Civil War Art and Letters of Private John Jacob Omenhausser, CSA, by Ross M. Kimmel and Michael P. Musick, provides a rare glimpse into the everyday life of a Civil War soldier, especially while imprisoned at Point Lookout. Among the artist’s more poignant renderings are many depicting the strained – and sometimes violent – relations between the prisoners and the African American Union troops sent to guard them. Join us for a book talk and author signing on Wednesday, November 5 from 6-8 PM.

November 6, 2014 - 6:00pm
From the time that European and English explorers began to colonize the New World, artists and mapmakers created visions of the American landscape that fueled the European imagination. They depicted a wilderness inhabited by exotic species and people they regarded as savage. These images provided fertile ground upon which Europeans could project their own beliefs and aspirations, supplying them with powerful tools for propaganda. Gradually, colonials themselves began to play a larger role in shaping an image of America. This talk explores how visual images depicting the south and those who lived within its bounds defined the cultural landscape of the region.

November 8, 2014 - 1:00pm
Baltimore City Historical Society, Friends of Maryland Olmsted Parks & Landscapes and the Maryland Historical Society invite you to a special program exploring urban environmental history featuring Rutherford Platt on Saturday, November 8 from 1:00-3:00 PM. For most of the past century, urban America was dominated by top-down policies serving the white business and cultural elite, the suburbs, and the automobile. In the 1990s, this model finally began to erode as local citizens, neighborhood groups, and other stakeholders began asserting their own needs and priorities. This new era of “humane urbanism” seeks to make cities and suburbs greener, healthier, safer, more equitable, more efficient, and generally more people-friendly. Platt is a University of Massachusetts professor, who has organized a series of conferences, including one in Baltimore several years ago, called "The Humane Metropolis" focusing on efforts to make our cities more livable, environmentally sustainable, and environmental just. His most recent publication is Reclaiming American Cities: The Struggle for People, Place and Nature Since 1900. Platt's Humane Metropolis web site: http://www.humanemetropolis.org/

November 20, 2014 - 6:00pm
Based on real events and incorporating actual excerpts from the Observer and other publications of the time, THE OBSERVER provides readers with an illuminating window into an era when the young nation was struggling to define its identity. It also immerses them in the world of what was then the third-largest city in the country, from two points of view: that of the preening and gossipy elite, and that of ordinary working people who were barely scraping by. At the same time, the book spins a universal tale of forbidden ambition, frustrated love, and, ultimately, hard-won empathy that transcends the barriers of class and culture. Join us on November 20 as Natalie Wexler discusses her research for writing this historical fiction, much of which has been compiled from resources in the Maryland Historical Society’s archival collection.