FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Maryland Historical Trust Receives $50,000 in Funding to Document American Indian Heritage in Baltimore City

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Press Release




David Buck

(443) 463-7139 (c)

Maryland Historical Trust Receives $50,000 in Funding to Document American Indian Heritage in Baltimore City

Grant Funding Awarded by National Park Service to Help Document and Survey Native Heritage in East Baltimore

(November 4, 2021) CROWNSVILLE, MD – The Maryland Historical Trust (MHT), a division of the Maryland Department of Planning, today announced that $50,000 in federal funding will help support the documentation of American Indian heritage in Baltimore City. The project was funded by the Underrepresented Community grant program, through the Historic Preservation Fund, and will be administered by the National Park Service, Department of Interior. The Underrepresented Community grant program supports state, tribal, and local agencies in their efforts to increase diversity in nominations to the National Register of Historic Places. 

“We anticipate this endeavor will provide new opportunities for collaboration and recognition,” said Elizabeth Hughes, MHT Director and the State Historic Preservation Officer. “Documentation is the critical first step that will assist preservationists and community members to advocate for preserving the places important to Native heritage.” 

Baltimore is part of the ancestral homelands of the Piscataway and the Susquehannock, and many other Native people have lived in the City over time. Members of the Lumbee Tribe, whose ancestral lands are in North Carolina, first began arriving in Baltimore City in the early 1890s. Thousands of Lumbee Tribe members migrated to Baltimore City after World War II, seeking employment opportunities and a better quality of life. They settled within a 64-block area in East Baltimore in the Upper Fells Point and Washington Hill neighborhoods, referred to by the Lumbee as “the reservation.” 

The forthcoming “Ashley Minner Collection” in the Maryland Folklife Archives at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) will serve as a foundation for this project’s research. The collection, developed by former UMBC American Studies professor Ashley Minner, in coordination with approximately 40 Lumbee Tribe Elders, provides a wealth of information on their presence in the city for more than a century.

The MHT project involves the preparation of a National Register Multiple Property Documentation Form (MPDF) for “American Indian Heritage in Baltimore City,” as well as one supporting individual or amended district nomination submitted under the MPDF cover. This work is essential to MHT’s goal of prioritizing the survey and documentation of understudied and underrepresented communities and histories. 

MHT has previously received several Underrepresented Community grant awards, which supported projects to survey and document the Civil Rights Movement, Women’s Suffrage Movement, and Asian American heritage. 

Questions or comments about this project can be directed to Heather Barrett, MHT Administrator of Architectural Research, at

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