Archaeology · Artifacts · Howard County MD · Theorizations · Victorian Era

Mystery Artifact

This artifact is interesting and we have a had a few guesses including a cane topper and a part of a small mirror.

(Photo Credit: Kelly Palich)

This artifact is made of carved bone, and fused together with an iron bar inside. It appears to have an area where a mirror could have rested. It dates from approximately the 1880s from the Patapsco Female Institute, which was a boarding school for high school and middle school aged girls from 1837-1890. This could have belonged to a former student or a teacher. I wonder if the superstition about broken mirrors was around back then!

GA · Georgia on my mind · Sense of Place

Historic snowfall in historic Savannah!

Today I had the pleasure of witnessing the rare occurrence of snow in the lowcountry! It truly was surreal and beautiful. I will post more photos later in the week but at least wanted to share a few from the apartment on West Jones St where my fiancé and I are staying through this week. I saw a light dusting of snow here in early 2010 but it was nothing compared to what happened today. The news was saying 1.5” but we walked around Forsyth Park and there was probably close to 3” on the ground. Since this is so rare the city does not have snow plows or salt trucks and the roads are so icy now after dark! Tomorrow it should be 40 degrees as a high and a lot of this may be melted away but mind is still blown!


Union Brick…any ideas?

As I waited for a wedding rental to get set up this morning, I walked around the Patapsco Female Jnstitute grounds to a place a have never been up close. There is a large pile of bricks off to the side in an overgrown area, I am guessing left over from the stabilization project. They are not modern day bricks, but I saw something I have never come across before: a brownish white brick with the word UNION imprinted on its face. A quick web search yielded nothing so I am hoping when I have time to delve a little deeper I will find out more !



Abandoned Sites · GA · Georgia on my mind · Sense of Place · Why I love the South

Tabby Construction: Building the early Lowcountry

Equal parts oyster shell, sand, water and lime, examples of the concrete material known as tabby can still be seen throughout the Lowcountry. In particular this blog will focus on St. Simon’s Island, GA and the surrounding area. From the first time I noticed this unique material, I was fascinated. Functional and vernacular, the abundance of oysters in this area created a striking sight as I traversed a wooded area in Tolomato Island, GA that was home to the ruins of a former sugar plantation and rum distillery known as ‘The Thicket.’

Tabby ruins of slave quarters at 'The Thicket' a sugar plantation/rum distillery, Tolomato Island, GA.
Tabby ruins of slave quarters at ‘The Thicket’ a sugar plantation/rum distillery, Tolomato Island, GA.

Continue reading “Tabby Construction: Building the early Lowcountry”

Community Relations · Family History · Intangible Heritage · Local Business · Sense of Place

The Last Polka at Blob’s Park: Our Final Evening at a Legendary Bavarian Wonderland

The front exterior of Blob's Park in Jessup, MD  photo credit:
The front exterior of Blob’s Park in Jessup, MD
photo credit:

I remember being 16 years old and it was Father’s Day weekend. My mom told me our whole family was going to this German place that played polka music and had plenty of German fare. Well not too many teenagers are going to be thrilled about the prospect of polka dancing, and I have never liked any kind of Weißwurst, bratwurst, weinerschnitzel, sauerkraut, etc. As much as I love speaking German, watching German films and visiting the German speaking countries, I was not thrilled about this family trip. What I didn’t know was just how much of a fun adventure this outing would be. Continue reading “The Last Polka at Blob’s Park: Our Final Evening at a Legendary Bavarian Wonderland”