February History Alive Newsletter

Curing the MidWinter Blahs

From the desk of
Burt Kummerow

Volume 3 Issue 2
February 6, 2014

Dear Reader,

Some years, winter is kind to Maryland. Hardly a whisper of snow or zero temperatures ever make an appearance. Then, all too often, Boreas, the North Wind, rules and arctic blasts grind the region to a halt. In 1772, during a season that a local preacher called a "kind of Greenland Winter," George Washington recorded the worst snowstorm in memory. Suffering from a major case of cabin fever, our Type A Founding Father watched helplessly as at least 30 inches paralyzed his Mount Vernon plantation for over a month. Bad winter weather in the Mid-Atlantic is nothing new.

Maryland, the Border State, is also famous for its "middle temperament." There's always a dose of the north mixed up with a dash of the south here in the Old Line State. The weather follows suit as we endure hot and cold, dry and wet extremes that make each day a new adventure. The winter of '13-'14 has been a real doozy with a visit from an Arctic Vortex that has sent folks searching closets for mufflers and ear muffs.

Far from hibernating, the Maryland Historical Society has a busy February planned. We can cure your winter blahs and preview those nice warm spring months. There's still time to sign up for the first of a great season of Francis Scott Key Lectures on Thursday, February 6. Historic St. Mary's City's all-star researcher and speaker, Dr. Henry Miller, is slated to ballyhoo the latest exciting discoveries at Maryland's 17th century capital as we begin a new partnership with our friends from St. Mary's County. On February 22, we will be shifting gears with our Young Defenders. We are rebooting last year's smash hit, The Bootleggers Bash. And, of course, you are always welcome to visit our galleries, Wednesday through Sunday. This month our "Inventing a Nation" gallery is featuring new treasures from our outstanding library and museum collections. Come one, come all! Leave your hearth fires at home and dream of those lovely spring days when all of Maryland teems with new life! This year, we will be in high gear with the excitement of Star Spangled adventures!

Coming in 2015! The Elizabeth Patterson Bonaparte Catalogue

Alexandra Researching
Alexandra Researching
Chief Curator, Alexandra Deutsch, has embarked upon an exciting new project, a catalogue based on the exhibition, "Woman of Two Worlds: Elizabeth Patterson Bonaparte and her Quest for an Imperial Legacy." For more than two years, Deutsch has been studying Elizabeth's long and fascinating life, pouring over hundreds of documents in the library and meticulously analyzing the objects in the Bonaparte collection. "Elizabeth's story is multi-layered and complex. Every time I turn to her papers and her objects, I discover something new, some previously undiscovered twist in her story," commented Deutsch.

The catalogue will feature a series of essays on various aspects on Elizabeth's life, including an essay about her legacy through to her great-granddaughter, Louise Eugenie Bonaparte Moltke-Huitfeldt. Using the vast resources at MdHS, Deutsch is weaving a narrative that brings a new perspective to Elizabeth and helps us to better understand the broader significance of the artifacts in the collection. Thanks to the generosity of Chair Emeritus Barbara Katz, this project has been made possible. The catalogue will be available in the winter of 2015 and the exhibition will remain on view until June 2015. Stay tuned for more details and your special opportunity to pre-order the catalogue!

The Artistic Legacy of the Calverts and Arundells in England and America

Discover the artistic legacy of Maryland's founding families - the Calverts and the Arundells - by examining the art and objects they inspired, on Thursday, February 6 beginning at 6pm.

Game Board
Image courtesy Wardour HM Miller
Join Dr. Henry M. Miller, Director of Research and Maryland Heritage Scholar at Historic St. Mary's City, as he discusses the Calvert and Arundell families in art during the 17th century. Dr. Miller will explore surviving works in architecture, such as Kiplin Hall and Hook House, funerary art, portraits, coins and medals, and decorative creations. Where possible, the identities of the artists they employed will be discussed and placed into the context of the time.

Dr. Miller will also provide a special look at the Calvert Papers, which are original documents featured in The Maryland Historical Society's collection.

One item of special note is a game board (pictured) believed to be painted by Maryland's foundress, Anne Arundell Calvert. Dr. Miller was given permission to remove it from its Victorian frame for the very first time. Also on display will be the Patent of Nobility that King James I presented to George Calvert, 1st Baron of Baltimore. Learn about all of these fascinating discoveries on February 6 - it's sure to be an interesting discussion!

This event is part of our Francis Scott Key Lecture Series. Tickets are $40/lecture; $175/individual series; $300 couple series. The lecture begins at 6:30pm, and there will be an open bar and heavy hors d'oeuvres. To register, click here.

Bootleggers Bash: REBOOTED!

Young Defenders at last year's Bootleggers Bash

The Young Defenders of the Maryland Historical Society are proudly hosting the Bootleggers Bash: REBOOTED on Saturday, February 22 at 9PM!

We had so much fun at last year's Baltimore Bootleggers Bash that we had to do it again: REBOOTED! This year, we'll be rocking the night away in the 1840s Plaza. It's a bigger, grander venue so we can share that Young Defenders spark with more of our friends! We're thinking less speak-easy and more Gatsby, so brace yourself for a night of indulgence, spectacle, and dancing. With two bars, a full dance floor, and a stunning view of downtown, you might call it a Caesar's Palace for local flappers.

Baltimore's own Full Tilt Brewing will be pouring libations throughout the evening at their very own bar, and we'll see a repeat of last year's top-notch cocktails from small-batch, craft distilleries. To top it off, True Chesapeake Oysters will be shucking their bounty from the Bay. All beverages and appetizers are included with ticket purchase. Live music is provided by hometown hero Bosley! A true entertainer making big band scale music with a funk sensibility, he's sure to keep us dancing till our legs give out. To find out more, click here.

The Bootlegger's Bash Lowdown

Attire: Fun Formal; Fedoras and Feathers encouraged.
Beer: Provided by Full Tilt Brewing
Spirits: Provided by Boyd & Blair, Green Hat Gin, Smooth Ambler Rye , and Stonewall Rum
Oysters: Provided by Chesapeake Oyster Co
Hearty Hors d'oeuvres, including a Gourmet Grilled Cheese Bar: Provided by Chef's Expressions and Social Expressions 
Tickets: $65 for Maryland Historical Society members and $75 for nonmembers. Order tickets here. 
More surprises on the way! Follow us on Facebook for more updates, and get your tickets now before they sell out!   
Sponsored by:  

 Brown Advisory WCS Logo

Bus Trip: The Costumes of
Downton Abbey at Winterthur

Downton Abbey
Courtesy PBS Masterpiece
We're pleased to announce that tickets are SOLD OUT for our March 1 trip to Winterthur to see Costumes of Downton Abbey!

If you have already purchased your tickets, you're as excited as we are to travel to Winterthur on Saturday, March 1 from 9 am-6 pm. There, we'll get a first look at Costumes of Downton Abbey, an original exhibition of exquisite designs from the award-winning television series.

Approximately 40 historically inspired costumes from the television show will be displayed and supplemented by photographs and vignettes inspired by the fictional program and by real life at Winterthur. We'll take an exclusive tour of the gallery and enjoy a champagne luncheon at the historic Green Room at the Hotel du Pont. We'll return to the Maryland Historical Society at 6pm that day.

If you weren't able to get your tickets, all is not lost! You may add your name to our waitlist by calling 410-685-3750 extension 399.

Save the Date: Saturday, April 12, 2014!

The Maryland Historical Society and the Lord Baltimore Hotel
cordially invite you to attend the

Lord and Lady Baltimore Gala

An opulent evening celebrating the arrival of two Baltimore icons: the Lord Baltimore Hotel and the Lady Baltimore statue. Please join us at the Lord Baltimore Hotel for dinner, cocktails, and dancing in the historic grand ballroom, now restored to its former glory. Guests will have exclusive access to the rooftop bar and spectacular views of Baltimore.

Saturday, April 12, 2014 | 6PM | $175 per person | Black tie

Valet parking available at 20 West Baltimore Street, Baltimore, MD 21201

Proceeds from this event will support the stewardship and interpretation of Lady Baltimore in her new home at the Maryland Historical Society.

To order tickets, click here.

Event sponsored and organized by the Lord Baltimore Hotel
and Classic Catering, with additional support from the 1844 Society

Lord and Lady Baltimore Gala After Party

Please join the Young Defenders of the Maryland Historical Society for live music and dancing, a premium open bar and desserts.

9PM to midnight | $65 per person | Black tie optional

Valet parking included

Event sponsored and organized by the Lord Baltimore Hotel
and Classic Catering, with additional support from
the Young Defenders of the Maryland Historical Society

To order tickets to the After Party, click here.

Your weekend getaway has just expanded beyond a three block radius! The Maryland Historical Society is teaming up with Zipcar!

Get 24/7 access to Zipcars! Simply reserve online, let yourself in with your Zipcard and drive. Members have access to thousands of Zipcars in a bunch of cities. No matter where you drive, gas and insurance are always included in the low hourly and daily rates. Join under the MD Historical Society for just $30 your first year (that's 50% off) and also get $30 in driving credit! Just enter promotional code BALMDHS at signup.

Like History Alive? Share Us With a Friend!...

I hope you're enjoying our monthly History Alive! E-newsletter. If you have a friend or family member who might enjoy receiving up-to-the-minute news and information about our events and exhibitions (and, of course, our trivia questions), simply send them this link: www.mdhs.org/signup

And they can sign up!

Speaking of Trivia...

Trivia Time!

This month, we focus on the panhandle of Maryland. How much do you know about this beautiful part of our state?

Question: In the 1880s, this Western Maryland city grew in population and became the second largest city in Maryland. Name that city, and why it grew so quickly.

Email us your answer, and you, too, could win a prize! Best of luck.

Until next month,

Burton Kummerow
President, The Maryland Historical Society

From Our Friends

Be a part of the artistic celebration at one of the earliest great American estates, Hampton National Historic Site.

The Hampton Mansion, built by Captain Charles Ridgely and one of the largest private homes in America upon its completion in 1790, is now a property of the National Park Service (NPS).

The site's partner, Historic Hampton, Inc. (HHI), will host its 2nd annual HAI evening exhibition on Friday, April 11. The exhibition will feature 28 artists in a juried show that evening. The artists chose from among HNHS' extensive collection of historic images as inspiration for their work. From these, original contemporary interpretations will be created, exhibited and offered for sale. The opening exhibition and reception will be on April 11, from 6 to 8 p.m. That evening, wine and cheese will be served, and the artists will be available to discuss their works which will be offered for sale through April 12.

Everyone is welcome to join us in celebration of original Hampton-inspired artwork in the Orangery at Hampton National Historic Site, located just outside the beltway in Towson.

In addition tours of the Mansion will be conducted concurrent with the exhibition. This event is free and open to the public. RSVP's are required at www.historichampton.org/rsvp.

Founded in 1844, The Maryland Historical Society Museum and Library occupies an entire city block in the Mount Vernon district of Baltimore. The society's mission is to "collect, preserve, and interpret the objects and materials that reflect Maryland's diverse cultural heritage." The Society is home to the original manuscript of the Star-Spangled Banner and publishes a quarterly titled "Maryland Historical Magazine." The Society is located at 201 W. Monument Street and open to the public Wednesday-Saturday from 10 am-5 pm, and Sunday (library only) 12 pm-5pm.