Baltimore Heritage’s second annual preservation micro-grant pitch party on last Monday at Whitehall Mill ended in a happy surprise. Southway Builders and FreedomCar made the unexpected decision to offer matching gifts and expand our micro-grant funding pool from $1,500 to $3,500. The result? Instead of just giving out four gifts, all seven groups that pitched an idea received $500 to make it happen.
On behalf of everybody at Baltimore Heritage, congratulations to the seven organizations, and sincere thanks to micro-grant donors Ms. Brigid Goody, Southway Builders, and Freedom Car!
The seven projects span the city from east to west Baltimore, including:
- Beloved Community Services Corporation at Union Baptist Church is working with the Baltimore Museum of Art to launch Soul Café: a project to create a safe space for community art engagement in Upton’s Marble Hill.
- Civic Works is making a new exhibit at Clifton Mansion showcasing an antebellum call-bell system and improving visitor experience on tours for their Legacy Education Project.
- H.L. Mencken House is buying garden supplies for volunteers to beautify the front stoop and improve the home’s back garden.
- Lillie Carroll Jackson Civil Rights Museum is buying books and organizing a new Saturday Civil Rights history book club for teens and young adults.
- Mount Clare Museum House is planning new special weekend tours celebrating Mount Clare’s one hundred years as a house museum
- Poe Baltimore is designing and printing a set of postcards featuring historic images of the Poe House.
- Preservation Society of Fells Point is planning to secure and stabilize the Caulker’s Houses on Wolfe Street, the only surviving eighteenth-century timber frame buildings left standing in Baltimore
Thank you to everyone who submitted proposals for the pitch party and everyone who came out on October 3. We plan to check in with the seven award-winning projects and share updates on their fantastic projects over the next few months. Stay tuned!
We’re continuing to add tours this fall with fun programs this weekend and over the next few weeks. We just lined up a new bike tour on October 28: All in the Family, a Bike Tour and Lunch with Baltimore’s Business Legacies. We’ll stop and talk with the owners at three, century-old Baltimore businesses: Budeke’s Paint and Decorating, Meyer Seed, and Tochterman’s Fishing Tackle, and then enjoy a picnic lunch from a fourth legacy business, DiPasquale’s Italian Market and Deli.
We still have room for you to join any or all of our three tours this weekend. On Saturday, come down to Lexington Market for a tour (and consider staying for lunch!). On Sunday morning, we are walking around Mount Vernon Place and climbing the steps at the Washington Monument. That afternoon, you can take a tour of the historic War Memorial Building followed by a concert by the Hopkins Symphony Orchestra.
Finally, we are excited to welcome Ms. Lisa Craig, Chief of Historic Preservation in Annapolis, to Baltimore on Thursday, November 9 for a free talk, Keeping History Above Water: Cultural Heritage in an Age of Climate Change. Ms. Craig will discuss her work planning for protecting historic places and cultural heritage in the face of rising waters and bigger storms. From hazard mitigation planning and flooding adaptation strategies to 3D modeling and hurricane case studies, Ms. Craig will share with us the leading edge of how Maryland can protect historic neighborhoods and communities from a future of rising tides.
There is a lot happening, and we hope you can join us!
Fall weather is perfect for going new places and exploring the city by bike and bus. We have three new tours lined up over the next few weeks including a beer history themed bike tour, a classical concert at a classical landmark, and a bus tour with local architect Tom Liebel for Doors Open Baltimore.
Baltimore Beer Week 2017 is coming up and Dr. Ralph Brown has volunteered to lead a morning ride on Saturday, October 14 covering breweries and beer-drinkers from the past. The bike tour ends with a sampler flight of beers at the Heavy Seas Alehouse (price included with registration), where we’ll hear from some of the folks making beer in Baltimore today.
The next day, October 15, we’ll be at the War Memorial Building for a tour where we can check out the recent window restoration of this historic landmark and then sit down to enjoy a performance by the Hopkins Symphony Orchestra. We’re excited to partner on this program with the orchestra and to offer a second performance on December 3 with new selections and soloists from the JHU Choral Society and Baltimore School for the Arts chorus.
Finally, you can close out the month with a Doors Open bus tour of local architecture and history from downtown to West Baltimore and back again led by Tom Liebel, architect and chair of Baltimore’s Commission for Historical and Architectural Preservation. Our ride will include stops at six wonderful historic places: the 1814 Peale Museum, Union Baptist Church on Druid Hill Avenue, the Arabber Center off of Pennsylvania Avenue, the 1806 St. Mary’s Seminary Chapel in Seton Hill, the Le Mondo art and performance space on Howard Street, and the War Memorial Building near City Hall by architect Laurence Hall Fowler.
Doors Open Baltimore now includes a full weekend with free open houses and self-guided tours of over fifty sites on Saturday, October 28 and dozens of special events and guided tours on Sunday, October 29. We hope you can be part of this fun annual event!
With sincere thanks for your past interest and support, I am writing today to ask you to join or renew your membership with Baltimore Heritage.
Baltimore Heritage is a small nonprofit organization. We rely on the many kind people who volunteer their time and commit their support each year to help save Baltimore’s unique historic places.
One historic place we’re helping right now is the Village Learning Place. For the past few months, we’ve worked with the Liesje Gantert, director of the VLP, along with staff and volunteer architects from the Neighborhood Design Center to take a close look at the condition of their former Pratt Library branch on Saint Paul Street. Over the next year, we will build on these efforts to help more local nonprofits improve maintenance of their historic civic spaces across Baltimore. Not all historic buildings are museums: they also provide affordable housing, child care, community meeting space, and more. We are eager to help keep these buildings working well for all the people who rely on them.
In addition to helping us save Baltimore’s historic places, as a member you also get the benefit of discounts on our heritage tour program. With great volunteers like Patricia Hawthorne, who has led our Monumental City tours for years, and new volunteers like Sarah Krum who just started this year, our we are grateful to the many people who make our heritage tours possible. Over the last ten years, our volunteers have organized and led nearly four hundred tours of over two hundred different historic places!
Membership support has been the foundation for nearly eight years of advocacy for the Hebrew Orphan Asylum, the nation’s oldest surviving Jewish orphanage. Today, we are a proud partner with the Coppin Heights Community Development Corporation in turning this long-threatened and neglected building back into a health care facility for people in West Baltimore. We expect construction to begin soon.
Thank you again for considering joining or renewing your membership, and I hope you can join us on October 3 at Whitehall Mill for our 2017 annual meeting, tour, and reception.
At Baltimore Heritage, we rely on support from hundreds of people in and around Baltimore: volunteers who make all our events possible, history-lovers who come on our heritage tours, and people who support our work as members, donors, and sponsors. Thank you!
We hope all of you can be our guests on October 3, 6:00 pm at the historic Whitehall Mill on for a reception, tour, and chance to help us give away four micro-grants for preservation in Baltimore. The evening program is also this year’s annual meeting where we elect board members and officers. Special thanks to Delbert Adams Construction Group for sponsoring this event. Please join us and help guide our work in the year ahead.
Reception & Tour
Enjoy light fare, wine, beer and more! We’ll take a tour through this former 1700s grist mill including the spectacular apartment home of artist Hilton Carter. Mr. Carter has turned his apartment at Whitehall Mill into an oasis with hundreds of plants and his own industry-inspired artwork. He has been featured in Baltimore Magazine and Baltimore Art, and is graciously opening his home for us.
We are giving out four micro-grants of $250 and $500 to deserving preservation efforts in Baltimore. Six people will give three-minute “pitches” of their ideas and then we will ask you to cast a vote for the ideas you’d like us to fund. We’ll learn about some great initiatives underway in Baltimore and have a little fun while helping them out. If you have a good idea, please send it in!
Finally, since our founding in 1960, Baltimore Heritage has been run by a board of directors elected by members who have contributed in the last year. We’ll elect our board and officers for the coming year and hope you will participate. If you haven’t made a membership gift this year, please make a donation today.
Thank you again for supporting Baltimore’s historic buildings and neighborhoods, and for supporting our work to keep them vibrant. We hope you can sign up to join us on Tuesday, October 3 at Whitehall Mill.