Upcoming Events

February 21, 2017 - 12:00pm
Prigg v. Pennsylvania is a transformative Supreme Court case often examined from the perspective of Constitutional Law. However, Iris Leigh Barnes’ study “from below” represents an overdue and careful analysis of the Harford County Court records that led to Prigg and reveals aspects of Margaret Morgan, her life, and what life was like in Harford County, Maryland, and the Upper Chesapeake region for African Americans, free and enslaved. She argues that the records further illuminate the importance of Morgan’s case in revealing the efforts of the region’s pro-slavery and slaveholding aristocracy to maintain the "peculiar institution," even if it meant disregarding the lives of Margaret Morgan, her children, and others like them.

March 1, 2017 - 6:30pm
Planning to attend our 2017 gala, Heirloom to Haute, or the after party with the Young Defenders? Take the mystery out of vintage clothes shopping with the Heirloom to Haute Vintage Pop Up! Join us on Wednesday, March 1 from 6:30-9:00 pm at the Maryland Historical Society for an evening of curated shopping with local vintage clothing dealers and a “runway for less” fashion primer with Glamour Girl, Lisa Simeone. Don't miss out on this unique opportunity to work directly with our vintage dealers who will help with your vintage makeover. Clothing options for men and women will be available.

March 2, 2017 - 6:30pm
The Romantic aesthetic of the 1810-1860 period combined history, nature, religion, emotion, and even a fascination for terror into a remarkable mélange expressed in the clothing of the era and influencing fashion design to the present day. Romanticism was rooted in late eighteenth-century European philosophical and literary discussions rejecting Enlightenment reason, and embracing instead the imagination and the unknown. The era's costume design will be discussed in this lecture alongside works of fine and decorative arts to show the pervasiveness of these ideas in the period's culture. Romantic design has been revived repeatedly since the early nineteenth century; indeed, today’s Goth and Steampunk fashion movements are deeply rooted in the Romantic sensibility.

March 9, 2017 - 6:30pm
Join MdHS volunteer curatorial assistant, Barbara Meger, as she reveals treasures—and perhaps a few secrets—packed away decades ago in Elizabeth Patterson Bonaparte’s trunks. Learn the true identity of some of the “scraps” and the value Elizabeth placed upon them throughout her life as evidenced by her meticulous records and journals. Meger’s research has turned up a chain of evidence that gives us an intimate insight into one of the 19th century’s most celebrated and fascinating women. This is an opportunity to view first-hand these precious object before they return to storage.

March 21, 2017 - 12:00pm
This brown bag talk will describe research undertaken at the Maryland Historical Society alongside research at the American Philosophical Society in the planning for the upcoming exhibition, Curious Revolutionaries: The Peales of Philadelphia (opening April 7, 2017). Diana Marsh will describe how archival collections and their content were translated into thematic approaches to the exhibition, as well as into exhibition texts, spatial design, graphics, programming, and guide materials for the show.

March 25, 2017 - 10:00am
Why do we celebrate Maryland Day on March 25th? Explore the story of how and why Maryland was founded. Learn about our state symbols and why our national anthem is so important to Maryland. Participate in a Maryland Day flag ceremony and parade, and assume the identities of important historical Marylanders. Each girl will receive the Maryland Historical Society patch. This program will also cover all requirements for the “Maryland Heritage” patch and “Celebrating Community” badge for Brownies. Please register by March 11.

March 25, 2017 - 6:30pm
Please join us at the Lord Baltimore Hotel for an opulent evening as we celebrate the dazzling fashion collection at the Maryland Historical Society. Local contemporary designers will showcase their vintage-inspired creations alongside our world class collection. Highlights will feature fashion-forward Marylanders of the past and present.

March 25, 2017 - 9:00pm
Celebrate the history and resurgence of Maryland fashion with the Young Defenders as we kick-up the energy at this After Party to the Heirloom to Haute gala! Enjoy two floors of entertainment as you choose between the ballroom with live band and dance floor AND a live DJ on the roof-top Skybar!

April 4, 2017 - 12:00pm
This talk will critically examine the racial theorizing that State Superintendent Thomas Pullen engaged in as he crafted school desegregation policy in Maryland from 1954 until his retirement in 1964. At the end of his career, Pullen, a Virginian whose father had owned slaves, began work on a manuscript detailing his involvement in school desegregation in Maryland, "Decently and in Order." This manuscript provides insight into the ways in which Pullen drew on his childhood memories of race in the South as he theorized two related social problems: the relationship between racial identity and contemporary politics, and the proper role of the federal government in school policy.

April 6, 2017 - 6:30pm
America’s exotic landscape and discoveries of unfamiliar species of flora and fauna fueled European imagination for nearly two centuries prior to the American Revolution. Nature had long been used as a means to categorize and understand the world in which they lived and America provided a laboratory for learned men across the ocean to substantiate or dispel their own theories and beliefs. American colonists were eager to supply their foreign correspondents with observations, specimens, and seeds. While Europeans enthusiastically solicited information and specimens from the New World, they regarded America as inferior, causing Americans to respond defensively. After the Revolution, Americans, led by men such as Thomas Jefferson, Charles Willson Peale, and the ornithologist Alexander Wilson, approached their natural environment with a greater sense of confidence. This talk will describe how Americans observed and recorded their nature and landscape in ways that justified their own unique beliefs and values.

April 6, 2017 - 7:00pm
Want to know more about your current Baltimore home or building? Tracking down an ancestral Baltimore birthplace or business? Attend this FREE online session to learn the basics of what the H. Furlong Baldwin library contains to help you with research on residential and commercial real-estate in Baltimore. Hear directly from Library and Maryland Genealogical Society staff about library collections and resources, helpful tips, and how to prepare to get the most out of your visit. A Q&A session will follow the presentation. Session space is limited!

April 8, 2017 - 12:00pm
Speaker, David K. Truscello, Professor at the Community College of Baltimore County, will share the story of his visit to his grandfather's Italian village, from how he prepared for the trip to why the experience exceeded his hopes and imagination. Enjoy Italian food and background Italian music as we greet spring and our fellow genealogists!

April 18, 2017 - 12:00pm
This presentation offers an overview about the life and academic legacy of Mariano Cubí y Soler. His work in Maryland as a Spanish linguist, polyglot translator, author, and university professor is recognized as an important part of his academic evolution. Furthermore, his academic achievements beyond Maryland are also shared with the purpose of acknowledging the many contributions he made to the fields of linguistics and the teaching of foreign language in the United States and abroad during the nineteenth century.

May 4, 2017 - 5:30pm
Join us for a riveting book talk with author Patrick K. O’Donnell, as he discusses his latest book WASHINGTON’S IMMORTALS: The Untold Story of an Elite Regiment Who Changed the Course of the Revolution. A light reception and book signing will follow his talk.

May 13, 2017 - 10:00am
Explore what life was like for immigrant families coming into Baltimore at the turn of the 20th century. Learn how the B&O Railroad encouraged the influx of immigrants to Baltimore, and discover what immigrants experienced at the Locust Point immigration station. Each girl will receive the Maryland Historical Society patch. This program will also cover most of the requirements for the “Playing the Past” badge for Juniors. Please register by April 30.

May 16, 2017 - 12:00pm
Young Jewish Baltimore entrepreneurs Jacob, Mendes and Phillip Cohen, act as agents selling lottery tickets along the Chesapeake shores. Mendes and Phillip are arrested for selling tickets marked to raise funds for the proposed Washington Monument in the District of Columbia on a Norfolk, Virginia wharf. After Jacob bails out his brothers, the wealthy Jacob hires the most outstanding attorney in the new nation - William Pinckney to appeal the case all the way to the Supreme Court. While the appeal failed in the historical opinion from Chief Justice John Marshall, the Cohen family, undeterred, became a prominent and wealthy family in nineteenth century Baltimore history.

May 23, 2017 - 12:00pm
This presentation explores how the memory of prisoners of war during the American Revolution helped construct emerging post-war ideas about the parameters of patriotic enthusiasm and identity. Additionally, it attempts to illustrate how prisoners were not simply casualties of war, but caught in the uncertainty of a fluid revolutionary society.

June 20, 2017 - 12:00pm
Researcher John Emond presents dramatic, humorous, and poignant “voices” of soldiers from the North and South through their documents and letters.

September 7, 2017 - 6:30pm
A friend of Elizabeth Patterson, abandoned wife of a failed Baltimore merchant, a single mother who divorced for love to marry a French artist/architect, and an accomplished editor/writer in her own right, Eliza Godefroy’s life was both extraordinary and tragic. Her failed journal, the first of its kind in America edited by a woman, remains a monument to her skills as a writer and observer of the intellectual life of the emerging urban presence of Baltimore, as much as her second husband's Battle Monument remains as the centerpiece of the city’s official seal. This lecture will explore the career of the brilliant, Eliza Godefroy during the first two decades of the nineteenth century.

October 5, 2017 - 6:30pm
This lecture will introduce several innovative visual and spatial techniques developed by Benjamin Henry Latrobe in his representations of the American landscape. In images of the rivers, rocks, buildings, and plantations of Virginia, Latrobe assessed his immigrant condition, meditated on human history, and imagined visions of the future. Latrobe’s sketchbooks at the Maryland Historical Society are recognized as one of the most significant collections of realistic representations of the American landscape prior to the Hudson River School. This research places them in the context of the international avant garde, asserting the significance of Latrobe oeuvre in the transatlantic world of art on the cusp of the nineteenth century.

November 2, 2017 - 6:30pm
What is the future of historic sites? Why are historic sites important today? Drawing examples from Drayton Hall in South Carolina and other National Trust sites through the northeast, including Cliveden in Philadelphia, Montpelier in Vermont, and President Lincoln’s Cottage in Washington DC, George McDaniel will discuss how historic sites across the country are working to make their communities a better place through education, economic development, and preservation.

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