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Pack Horse Ford Chapter commemorated War of 1812

By Staff | May 24, 2012

On Saturday, April 14, the Pack Horse Ford Chapter, National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (NSDAR) commemorated the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812 by sponsoring a bus trip to several historical sites in the Baltimore area related to the war.

The group, consisting of members, family and guests, began a tour of Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine in Baltimore, Md. At the new visitor center at Fort McHenry, a statue of Francis Scott Key stands watch over the film that detailed the War of 1812 and the famous poem that Key wrote. In 1931, the Star Spangled Banner became our National Anthem. Historical artifacts are part of the visitor center. The fort, in pristine condition, includes cannons, the parade ground, guardhouses, barracks and powder magazine. From the top of the fort, a commanding view of the harbor can be seen.

The second stop on the tour was the Star Spangled Banner Flag House, built in 1793 and its museum. The group toured the small home where Mary Pickersgill sewed a huge American flag that inspired Francis Scott Key’s famous poem. Many interesting relics, like a block of tea and a quail cooker, were on display. The museum contains a variety of artifacts, including a fragment of the Star-Spangled Banner flag and a drum used by an American soldier during the bombardment of Fort McHenry.

After the guided tour, the group traveled a short distance to enjoy a relaxing luncheon at a restaurant that boasts beautiful views of the Inner Harbor marina.

The final destination of the bus tour was the spectacular National Historical Site, Hampton Estate in Towson, Md. Built as a country seat just after the Revolutionary War, the Georgian mansion is elegantly decorated and furnished as it was when the Ridgely family lived there. The estate contains 90 percent of its original contents. The Hampton Estate was home to seven generations of the Ridgely family.

From the mansion, the tour continued across the road to the lower farmhouse where the first Ridgely lived in the 1700s and where the last Ridgely lived from 1948-1978, when fortunes were lost. Park rangers gave interesting interpretive guided tours of the mansion and of the farm. Three workers’ quarters, including those used by slaves, stand next to the lower house. Still left to be seen were the magnificent grounds and family graveyard.

The Chapter would like to thank the community for participating in its annual bus trips, which allowed the Chapter to award scholarships to JROTC cadets and Good Citizens and conduct history essay contests at local schools, among other charitable activities.

Trips like these and other charitable work help the DAR to “Preserve the Past, Enhance the Present, and Invest in the Future.” To learn more about the work of today’s DAR, visit www.DAR.org.