The Historical Society of Talbot County held its annual meeting on Tuesday, May 18 in the HSTC auditorium. Despite the inclement weather, over 120 friends of HSTC attended to hear about the progress of the organization financially and programmatically over the past year, and its plans for the near future. President of the Board of Directors, Richard C. Tilghman, Jr. welcomed everyone and noted “HSTC’s positive momentum and the renewed excitement for the organization’s mission.” President Tilghman acknowledged his fellow board of directors, volunteers, donors, members and staff for helping to accomplish so many things over the past year.
The meeting marked the end of Board service for Dirck Bartlett, Kimberly Corkran, Wuzzy Miller, and Meg van den Berg and the beginning of board service for Patrick Bogan, There Fiechter, Carolyn Miller, Michael Cone, Susan Wilford, Rick Van Emburgh and David Tuthill. HSTC also announced that HSTC friends and past Board of Directors, Norma Redele and Barclay Trippe were appointed to Board of Director Emeritus. For the 2010-2011 year, Richard C. Tilghman, Jr. is President, Carla Howell is Vice President, Roger Bollman is Treasurer and Bill Lane is the Secretary. Eleanor Shriver Magee remains the Executive Director. “As I complete my first year as Executive Director, I am grateful for the leadership shown by this past year’s Board of Directors and I am eagerly awaiting the chance to work with the new and returning Directors as well as the staff, donors, and volunteers to move HSTC forward,” said Shriver Magee.
President Tilghman presented the 2010 President’s Award to the Talbot County Garden Club represented by its current President, Bobbie Brittingham. The Historical Society of Talbot County honored the TCGC for its longstanding work in HSTC’s garden but also for its other civic projects throughout the county including but not limited to maintaining the Children’s Garden and Five Corners in Idlewild Park, Hospice House Gardens, Mayor and Council Gardens, and creating of Christmas Wreaths for many prominent buildings during the holiday season. “HSTC and many parts of our county would simply not be the same without our dear friend, the Talbot County Garden Club,” said Tilghman.
The meeting concluded with the presentation of the Heritage Awards and Awards of Merit. The award presentations are an important and exciting feature of HSTC’s Annual Meeting. A wide variety of projects are eligible for a Heritage Award including education programs, publications, preservation of a historic site or structure, historic landscape or garden design, “history makers” and new architecture built in an historic environment. “Once again this year the Heritage Committee received several very outstanding nominations. The committee was hard pressed to select this year’s winners. This year’s winners were chosen for their extraordinary vision and taking those ‘above & beyond’ extra steps to achieve very noteworthy results,” noted Heritage Award Committee Chair, Pamela Heyne.
Citizens of Muskrat Park
For the rehabilitation, enhancement and adaptive reuse of green space within a historic district
It took a village to renew this park. When the Citizens for Muskrat Park, with Barbara Paca’s design in hand, lobbied for less parking and more green, the Commissioners of St. Michaels agreed. The result is a design more in-keeping with the feel of the community, not a proscribed urban space. The new Muskrat Park enhances the surrounding historic architecture and harbor, and creates a welcoming, shared public space for all of St. Michaels and its visitors to enjoy.
Recipients of the Award: Marie Martin and Will Gordon
Tilghman Gravesite at Rich Neck Manor, Inc.
For the preservation of a historic cemetery
After years of planning, preparation, and study, Arthur Waxter and his brother W.D. Waxter, III, engineered the restoration of the Tilghman Family cemetery and the gravesite of Matthew Tilghman. Matthew Tilghman lived from 1718 to 1790 and was known as the “Father of the Revolution” in Maryland. The Waxters were disturbed that the resting place of such an important figure in our history was left to crumble. They raised the money to fund the professional services to clear the overgrowth, rebuild the stone wall, and care for the grave markers. Repairing these tabletop markers was a complex process requiring not simply repointing brick but piecing and pinning bluestone tablets, or ledgers, removing poor repairs, and cleaning and resetting stones. This was a complex, high-quality project undertaken by two Talbot County residents who committed a dozen years to honoring our heritage respectfully.
Recipient of award: Arthur Waxter
For lifetime achievement in the restoration and preservation of historic buildings, their settings and other artifacts related to the heritage of Talbot County
For more than three decades Ebby duPont has gone quietly about the business of restoring and preserving artifacts of Talbot County history. He has restored log canoes, early 20th century pleasure boats, an important rural church, vernacular and high style residential architecture, and has created exemplars of new architecture in historic settings. In the St. Michaels Historic Area he restored and adapted a series of small houses for modern living while respecting their original scale and design, and thereby retained the look and the feel of a whole section of a neighborhood. His high caliber work represents a lifetime of achievement and a lasting contribution to Talbot County’s heritage.
Recipient of Award: Blaine “Ebby” duPont
Maryland Room of the Talbot County Free Library
For preserving archives and providing research assistance to the public
For more nearly 70 years The Maryland Room has been a special resource to professionals and laypeople researching important events, locating ancestors and uncovering the history of their communities, neighborhoods, and homes. There are over 4500 books, 96 reels of newspaper microfilms, 33 reels of census data including a complete record for Talbot County, and files and boxes of catalogued maps, clippings, pamphlets, manuscripts and journals. The staff is indulgent with newcomers and familiar faces, and their thorough knowledge of their resources and others throughout Maryland is impressive. No author, no historian, no historic area resident in Talbot County would be without the Maryland Room.
Recipients of the Award: Becky Riti and Scotti Oliver
Jousting Tournament at Old St. Joseph’s Catholic Church
For longevity, historical significance and promotion of Maryland’s state sport
St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church has sponsored this annual jousting tournament for 140-plus years. The tournament has a history of being held on August 15th, Feast of the Assumption, and still occurs every August, but on the first Wednesday. The only time the tournament was cancelled was during World War II when, according to the record “the most able-bodied riders” were at War. Jousting became Maryland’s State Sport in 1968. Just so you know, in 2008 Lacrosse became the Official Team Sport of Maryland.
Recipients of the Award: Father Robert Coine and Michael Boyle
Awards of Merit 2010
For the Dr. Harry Walsh Outlaw Gunner artifacts exhibit
This community exhibit honored Dr. Harry Walsh, one of the Founders of Waterfowl Festival. Close friends, collectors and even the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum loaned materials to be included in this Artifacts Exhibit at the High School last fall. The display highlighted items that used to be in Dr. Walsh’s collection, and helped to create the feel of the time period of Dr. Walsh’s book about an era in Chesapeake Bay history: The Outlaw Gunner.
Recipients of the Award: Judy Price, Bill Millar, Pete Lesher, Joe Walsh
Tilghman Waterman’s Museum
For collecting, sharing and celebrating the heritage of the island’s watermen and their families
It’s early in its career to honor the Tilghman Waterman’s Museum, but we feel it is laudable and critical that the people of Tilghman have stepped forward to protect their heritage against the threats of time and change as the Chesapeake Bay struggles. They created a heritage association, began a museum in the old barber shop, and then secured a permanent home for their museum by purchasing the 1893 Lee House – an historic home with special Tilghman-Island characteristics. They say their “journey began …with a handful of Tilghman Island residents interested in preserving an historic workboat. [The] idea soon expanded into an effort to record the ongoing story of Tilghman Island’s unique community, a community rich in history and with a culture centered on the work of watermen and their families.
Recipients of the Award: Hall and Mary Kellogg
HSTC’s mission is to collect, preserve, and interpret materials that document and illustrate the history of Talbot County, Maryland. The Society promotes public interest, understanding and enjoyment of the County’s rich heritage within Maryland’s Eastern Shore and the Nation. For more information about HSTC please call 410-822-0773 or visit www.hstc.org .