Grants, Volunteers Set up War of 1812 Event
Bicentennial of attacks on Havre de Grace will be marked with museum-led event.
Two hundred years after its ancestors stood in the face of destruction, Havre de Grace will remember the War of 1812 and it’s attacks that in many ways define the small city on the waterfront.
Thanks to a $99,000 grant from the National Park Service and a $34,000 grant from the Maryland Heritage Area Authority, the City of Havre de Grace will host an event in conjunction with the bicentennial of the War of 1812.
The project has four major components: a community history research project, a scale model of the city and upper Chesapeake Bay circa 1812, interpretive exhibits and an educational component.
It’s expected to be a significant event for the city.
“This is going to be a tremendous impact for the economy here in Havre de Grace, as well as visitors to Havre de Grace,” city Tourism and Marketing Manager Brigitte Peters said. “The target history for Havre de Grace is so broad. Havre de Grace embraces the education value, and really getting the story out there, and how we survived [the attacks in the War of 1812.]”
Heidi Glatfelter will be the project manager, serving in the role that was to be held by former city councilwoman and Maritime Museum director Brenda Guldenzopf, who passed away in July.
Marsha Jacksteit spoke at last week’s city council meeting, lobbying on behalf of the city’s museums for council to approve the planned grant project.
“Very few communities can say they were attacked by a foreign country, were nearly destroyed, survived it and moved on into the future,” Jacksteit said.
For council, it was a no-brainer—the proposal passed, 6-0.
“Personally thank you for picking up the ball here from Brenda. She was a dear friend of all of ours,” councilman Randy Craig said. “It’s really heartening to see all the museums come together for such a project.”
The community history research project will entail archival research and collecting stories and digitizing artifacts from the community—which will be utilized in developing the various exhibits planned.
The interpretive exhibits include a multi-site exhibit on the geography and economy of the Upper Bay in the early 1800s, as well as the events of May 3, 1813—displayed on panels at the Visitor Center and three Chesapeake Gateway sites. There will be outdoor waysides at sites along or near the Star-Spangled Banner Trail.
The educational component includes traveling trunks, lesson plan and classroom resources, costumed interpreters, maps and brochures, and the development of the Havre de Grace portion of the Star-Spangled Banner Land and Water Trails.