Summer 2023 Newsletter

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Statewide Preservation Plan's Regional Public Meetings 

Please join us to share your ideas, questions, and concerns about the future of historic preservation, archaeology, and cultural heritage in Maryland! Your participation will inform the statewide preservation plan, an eight-year guidance document for government agencies, non-profit advocates, and others involved in these fields. Each meeting will include a short presentation followed by a facilitated discussion. You can also share your opinions by filling out our survey!

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Historic Revitalization Tax Credits for Commercial Rehabilitation Projects

MHT is now accepting applications and is available for consultation regarding commercial rehabilitation projects seeking Historic Revitalization Tax Credits!

The Small Commercial Tax Credit is available for projects with qualified rehabilitation expenditures below $500,000.

Staff is also able to consult and answer questions about the FY24 Competitive Commercial Tax Credit; applications for the next round of funding are due by August 31, 2023.

Southern Maryland National Heritage Area

We would like to offer MHAA heritage area, Southern Maryland, a special congratulations on their recent designation as a national heritage area! They celebrated their official launch at Piscataway Park in Accokeek with a keynote address from Governor Wes Moore and remarks from the Piscataway Indian Nation, the US Department of the Interior, and Southern Maryland National Heritage Area Executive Director, Lucille Walker.


LGBTQ History in Maryland

By Brenna Spray, PhD (Outreach Coordinator)

Like Maryland history, LGBTQ history is varied and intersectional. However, despite thousands of years of evidence of same-sex desires and relationships, Maryland is one of only two states that have conducted an LGBTQ context study (the other being Kentucky). 

Spotlight: Harry Calder House

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In 1889, the Baltimore Sun ran an article about Howard Calder and his wife Catherine Beall, who had been married in Harford County and then moved to Baltimore together. It was discovered after the fact that Howard had been born Hanna, and so Catherine Beall was forcibly removed from the relationship by her family. Calder, after losing the case in court to remain married to Catherine, would later marry another woman and move to Virginia, and then Florida. Here he once again made the news when his body was examined by the coroner on his death. The Sun recounts his troubles: When Howard was asked how he felt about the situation with his wife, he said: 


'I am anything but well. I did not sleep a wink all last night and I have had no peace of mind since Katie was taken away....I am greatly worried about my troubles, and I feel now that I must come out and assert myself and take my proper place in the world as a man, which I certainly am.'"

Currently, there are no Maryland sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places for the relevance to LGBTQ history—although this fact is in the process of being remedied. In the meantime, there are tools to help explore Maryland’s LGBTQ stories. 


Preservation Maryland's LGBTQ Context Study

Led by Preservation Maryland, and funded by the Maryland Historical Trust and Preservation Maryland’s Waxter Memorial Internship Program and the Heritage Fund, the LGBTQ Context Study by Dr. Susan Ferentinos takes readers through the history of LGBTQ historiographies, outlining how things have changed over the years. The document and property database of nearly 400 sites important to LGBTQ+ life in each of Maryland’s counties are now part of the historic record. These sites range in time from the 17th century when Europeans first arrived through to the 21st century. 

The report illuminates Maryland LGBTQ+ history in rural, suburban, and urban locations, including sites associated with non-binary historical figures, leading “out” elected officials, strong community groups and popular gay bars, advocacy for AIDS treatment and marriage equality, and many other important sites.

The context study is a milestone in Preservation Maryland’s multi-year commitment to LGBTQ+ heritage visibility, and diversification of the historic record. A booklet, Planting the Rainbow Flag, has recently been produced by Preservation Maryland to highlight some of the sites in the study.

HistoryPin Digital Map


As a part of the larger LGBTQ context study, a HistoryPin map was created as a visual tool for the identification of LGBTQ sites across the state. This allows for an exploration of how these sites fit together spatially, including where historically-LGBTQ neighborhoods might be located. This map fits into a country-wide project, LGBTQ America, which plots sites related to LGBTQ history across the United States.

Baltimore Heritage

Born out of the Covid closures, Baltimore Heritage's 5-Minute Histories have become a great resource on all things related to Baltimore history. They have produced nearly 300 videos, including several that specifically address LGBTQ history in Baltimore: 

Baltimore Heritage also has information on LGBTQ sites throughout Baltimore and a timeline of Baltimore's LGBTQ heritage.

Other Resources

The Maryland Center for History and Culture has several collections focused on LGBTQ history and culture. Their library has a collection of photographs and ephemera donated by Charles L. “Chuck” Bowers (owner of the club, The Hippo), and DJ Farrell Maddox. One great example is a scrapbook of autographed headshots from those who performed at the Hippo, including Baltimore-born drag icon Divine. The museum has a repository of items from performers, including Devin Cherubini and Derrick Smith. The Mark Procopio Collection contains materials related to various LGBTQ+ activist organizations in Maryland. The Wilson-Welihindha Marriage Papers focuses on the first same-sex marriage in Maryland, between Ryan Wilson and Shehan Welihindha.

The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Community Center of Baltimore is celebrating its 35th anniversary by organizing a multi-part video series, focusing on the stories of the LGBTQ community from people who have lived or worked in Baltimore. A non-profit called Making Gay History has a series of oral histories available to listen to--they are now in their 12th season and have several episodes that focus on people who lived and grew up in Maryland! Similarly, OUTWORDS has several videos that capture, preserve, and share the stories of LGBTQIA2S+* elders who were born or lived in Maryland. The Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network has oral histories geared towards a younger audience

In 2015, Louise Parker Kelley published a book, LGBT Baltimore, which tells the history of the LGBTQ community in Baltimore from the founding of the Metropolitan Community Church to the work of the Chase Brexton Clinic. The University of Baltimore Special Collections and the Enoch Pratt Free Library have archives of the The Baltimore Gay Paper.

This is not a comprehensive list. If we've missed something important, please contact Brenna Spray at so we can add it to our resources! 


Non-Capital Grant Now Open

Eligible projects include research, survey, documentation, conservation, planning, and educational activities involving historic, architectural, archaeological, or cultural resources. An Intent to Apply (ITA) is due June 30, 2023, and complete applications are due August 1, 2023. Please visit our website to learn more about this funding opportunity and start an application .

FY24 AAHPP Grant Deadline Approaching

The deadline for the FY24 African American Heritage Preservation Program grant application is July 17th. Projects must focus on the preservation of buildings, sites, or communities of historical and cultural importance to the African American experience in Maryland. Visit the program web page for more information.

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Reach Out!

There are many ways you can learn more about MHT, its programs, and the work it does. The latest news is updated regularly on our website. You can "like" and "follow" us on Facebook and Instagram, or sign up for our e-blasts to have our quarterly newsletters and other preservation news delivered straight to your inbox! If you are interested in joining the team at MHT, check the most recent job listings



Where, Oh Where Has My Little Boat Gone? Tracking the Coastal Movement of Shipwrecks by Dr. Susan Langley

Guest Blog: First and Franklin Presbyterian Church's Contribution to the LGBTQIA+ Community in Baltimore by David Pierson, First and Franklin Presbyterian Church Elder

Guest Blog: Preserve the Past in Your Backyard: Save Baltimore’s Privies for the Future by Lauren Schiszik, M.H.P., Historic Preservation Planner and Staff Archaeologist, Baltimore City Department of Planning