Way Back Machine

PICTURE THIS: The Story Behind the Twin Bridges of Dorchester County

    You know how the traffic goes on Kent Island come summer weekends? The backups begin many miles before from the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. A legion of goofballs make it worse by looking for shortcuts when they don’t have a clue where they’re going. The poor local people end up trapped inside their houses, afraid to even run a little errand. Things used to be…
Quote of the DayWay Back Machine

QUOTE OF THE DAY: In an Old Tomato Cannery, “the Satisfication of All Our Work Done Right”

One day last winter I drove out to St. Michaels to hear a presentation at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum by a panel of local folks whose families were involved in various old canneries that used to be so central to the economy in the mid-Shore region--and all around the Delmarva Peninsula. One of the presenters passed around a copy of this poem, written during the…
September 16, 2018
Destinations

SITES & STOPS: The Tilghman Watermen’s Museum

    The Tilghman Watermen’s Museum is chock full of interesting stories from days gone by, but one story in particular lingered in my mind after a recent visit. That was the story of the way the museum itself took shape, how one couple’s dreams of a peaceful retirement led them into a project full of new discoveries and fresh challenges. Mary and Hall Kellogg…
Tubman Travels

TUBMAN TRAVELS: How the Other ‘Moses’ Kept the Dogs of Slavery at Bay

The story of Moses Viney that follows is excerpted from Tubman Travels: 32 Underground Railroad Journeys on Delmarva, a book by Secrets of the Eastern Shore that tells stories of Harriet Tubman, Frederick Douglass, and many other men and women whose journeys in slavery and out of bondage went through the Eastern Shore and Delaware. Moses Viney had a pretty fun go of it for…
Quote of the DayWay Back Machine

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “How dear to our hearts are the scenes of our childhood” on the Eastern Shore

    J.B. Seth was 71 years old when he finally got around to publishing his memoirs in 1926. The Talbot County native was an Eastern Shore railroad man in his adult career, but the part of his life that is the focus here is a boyhood spent in the Talbot County countryside during the 1850s. To enjoy golden days a child should be brought…
Tubman TravelsWay Back Machine

TUBMAN TRAVELS: Young Frederick Douglass in the Fight of His Life

    Standing in downtown St. Michaels today, with its tourist-friendly bevy of upscale shops and interesting eateries, it’s not easy to imagine the sort of place this town was when Frederick Douglass arrived in the early 1830s. Still known as Fred Bailey then, he was at this point a city boy through and through. He was horrified to find himself stuck in a rural…
Way Back Machine

DELMARVA CLASSIC: The Sweet Strawberry Boom of Days Gone By

    The story behind the variety of strawberry we enjoy nowadays is a global affair that stretches across two centuries and three continents. Way back in the 1500s, some French explorer noticed that the wild strawberries of Virginia had bigger fruits and brighter color than their European counterparts. He brought some back to Europe and farmers started playing around with them. But it wasn’t…
Quote of the Day

QUOTE OF THE DAY: How Royal Oak Became the “Healthiest Place in America”

    The writer Dickson J. Preston got to the bottom of this burning question when he put together a brief portrait of the boom times that came to Royal Oak  during the latter part of the 1800s. This is from Preston's book Talbot County: A History, which was published back in 1983. Royal Oak, an ancient community, gained momentum when the steamboats and railroads began bringing…
Tubman TravelsWay Back Machine

TUBMAN TALES: Young Fred Bailey Gets His First Taste of Freedom

    My latest writing project is something I'm calling "Tubman Tales," though it focuses on more than just Harriet Tubman. Case in point: This chapter is about the life of a young slave in Talbot County named Fred Bailey, who is better known in the history books as the famous anti-slavery orator Frederick Douglass. Running Free at Holme Hill Young Fred Bailey got his first…