Maryland Humanities Council’s FREE July Chautauqua Series Brings the War of 1812 To Life At Six Locations Around the State

The Maryland Humanities Council (MHC), in conjunction with local partners, will present the 18th annual summer Chautauqua series, commemorating the bicentennial of the War of 1812, from July 5–July 13 at six regional locations across the state.

Free and open to the public, live local musical and theatrical acts open each show. Living history performances are followed by a question and answer session which often sparks spirited conversation and provides great educational family fun. See below for a complete schedule.

“Inspiration, Unity, Preparedness, Courage: Maryland and the War of 1812” features three of five key historical figures at each location. Audiences will hear from the voices of the following characters:

· Francis Scott Key: An American lawyer and amateur poet who penned the lyrics of The Star-Spangled Banner, our National Anthem
· Rosalie Stier Calvert: A member of a wealthy Maryland family whose extensive correspondence illuminated life on the Calvert plantation leading up to and during the War of 1812
· Mary Pickersgill: The Baltimore flagmaker who stitched the famous flag that flew over Fort McHenry during the Battle of Baltimore
· Robert Ross: The British Major General who routed American troops at the Battle of Bladensburg, burned Washington, and was mortally wounded on his way to the Battle of Baltimore
· President James Madison: The fourth President of the United States (1809-17) who led our nation into the War of 1812

MHC is a statewide, educational, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. The purpose of MHC is to stimulate and promote informed dialogue and civic engagement on issues critical to Marylanders. For more information about MHC, please visit

Jill Peterson (Mary Pickersgill) has been performing as the flagmaker for the Star-Spangled Banner Flag House since 2002. She conducts outreach across the Baltimore region and has appeared as Mary on Maryland Public Television and at War of 1812 events at Fort McHenry. She has a B.A. in Communication from Concordia College, Seward, NE, and was a photographer in the Air Force.

Alan Gephardt (Francis Scott Key) has been portraying Francis Scott Key at schools, historical societies and other gatherings since 1989. He has worked in the public history field for over 20 years, and is currently a ranger for the National Park Service, splitting his time between Hampton National Historic Site, Fort McHenry, and the James A. Garfield National Historic Site. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in history at Towson University in 1974 and his Master’s at the University of Maryland in 1997.

Mary Ann Jung (Rosalie Stier Calvert) is the award-winning actress behind the History Alive! interactive= shows. She has been a lead actress and Director of Renaissance History and Shakespearean Language at the Maryland Renaissance Festival for over 30 years. She is a Smithsonian scholar/performer and has appeared on CNN, the Today Show, and Good Morning America. Jung’s living history performances include Julia Child, Clara Barton, Mistress Margaret Brent, Rosalie of Riversdale, Amelia Earhart, Good Queen Bess, and Rosie the Riveter. She has a B. A. in British History from the University of Maryland.

Doug Mishler (Robert Ross) is an independent scholar who has taught at the University of Nevada and Western Washington University. His the author of a history of the Ringling Brothers Circus. He has previously appeared at MHC’s Chautauqua as Jefferson Davis, P.T. Barnum, Theodore Roosevelt, William Lloyd Garrison, Henry Ford, Upton Sinclair and George Wallace. He also portrays Ernie Pyle, Billy Sunday, William Clark, Andrew Carnegie, Andrew Jackson, Edward R. Murrow, and Thomas Hard Benton. MIshler has a Ph.D. in American cultural history from the University of Nevada.

John Douglas Hall (James Madison) has portrayed James Madison at Montpelier—the President’s hom
in Orange County, Virginia—since it was re-opened in 1987. He has also represented Madison at conferences, colleges, museums, and historic sites around the country. In his unique approach to living history, he studies and portrays events as they occurred 200 years ago to the day—starting each day by reading gazettes and pamphlets of that particular date in history.


MHC offers several ways for the public to enhance their Chautauqua experience. Here are a few:
Online Resources: MHC’s website, offers a War of 1812 resources page full of links to War of 1812 sites and resources.

Watch a Sneak Peek: Scan the QR box with your smartphone to view a five-minute clip of award-winning actress Mary Ann Jung as Rosalie Stier Calvert or follow the following link to MHC’s You Tube Channel:

MHC Blog: During the month of June, our blog, located on the MHC homepage at, will feature Interviews with Chautauqua performers, and articles about the War of 1812.

2012 Chautauqua Schedule

7:00pm music, 7:30pm performance, under the tent
In case of severe weather: indoors in Garrett College Auditorium
Thursday, July 5 President James Madison
Friday, July 6 Rosalie Stier Calvert
Saturday, July 7 Major General Robert Ross

7:00pm music / 7:30pm performance, indoors in Q Theater
Friday, July 6 President James Madison
Saturday, July 7 Mary Pickersgill
Sunday, July 8 Major General Robert Ross

4:00pm music / 4:30pm performance, indoors in the church
Friday, July 6 Francis Scott Key
Saturday, July 7 Rosalie Stier Calvert
Sunday, July 8 Mary Pickersgill

7:00pm music/7:30pm performance, outdoors
In case of severe weather: indoors in the Avalon Theatre
Monday, July 9 Major General Robert Ross
Tuesday, July 10 Rosalie Stier Calvert
Wednesday, July 11 Francis Scott Key

6:45pm music / 7:15pm performance, outdoors
In case of severe weather: indoors in FA Building Theatre
Tuesday, July 10 Major General Robert Ross
Wednesday, July 11 President James Madison
Thursday, July 12 Rosalie Stier Calvert

7:00pm music / 7:30pm performance, under the tent
In case of severe weather: Lower Atrium, High Technology Bldg
Wednesday, July 11 Major General Robert Ross
Thursday, July 12 Mary Pickersgill
Friday, July 13 Francis Scott Key
Schedule subject to change. Visit for details.