Preservation trust to honor efforts to unearth, celebrate county's past


October 28, 2002|By Sue du Pont | Sue du Pont,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

IT'S NOT unusual to find Harwood resident Lois Nutwell working in the dirt. It's something she has done for years as a volunteer archaeologist to help uncover the history of Anne Arundel County. At first, she worked one day a month in the summer, but when she retired last year from her job at the Department of Defense she immediately started volunteering once a week.

"I really enjoy it," Nutwell said. "It's really a learning experience all the time."

On Wednesday, she will be recognized for her work with a Volunteer Award from the Anne Arundel County Trust for Preservation at the group's annual historic preservation and archaeology awards ceremony. The program will be held at the Mount Tabor Good Samaritan Lodge No. 59 in Crownsville. Four other people will be honored at the event for their contributions to county history. Also among the honorees will be a county building.

"When we talked over all the nominations, there were several individuals who had made contributions above and beyond that we just felt we had to recognize," said Will Mumford, the trust's president.

Photographer Marion E. Warren will receive the Outstanding Public Service Award for his lifetime contribution to historic preservation through his exceptional photography and preservation of photographs. For decades, the Annapolis resident's photographs have captured the people, places and landscapes of Anne Arundel County, the Chesapeake Bay and Maryland. Much of his work is available to the public at the Maryland State Archives.

"He's been very instrumental in documenting the current history, 1940s or so to the present. He's just done an awful lot," Mumford said.

The Special Contribution to Archaeology Award will be presented to Ned Crandell for his support of the archaeological investigation and preservation of the 17th-century town of Herrington, the second-oldest European settlement in Anne Arundel County. Crandell's South County property includes the archaeological site.

Maj. Gen. John W. Huston will receive the Special Service Award for dedicated service in educating the public through his steadfast coordination of the St. John's College History Lecture Series, which is cosponsored by the trust. For 20 years, Huston, former chairman of the History Department at the Naval Academy and an Air Force historian, presented informative and entertaining programs about Maryland history with an annual series of five lectures.

"It's been a labor of love," Huston said. "Many people come back year after year, night after night." About 250 people attend each event, he said.

The 22nd Marjorie Murray Bridgeman Award will be presented to Roger B. White, a historian and writer, for his outstanding contribution to the study of Anne Arundel County history and his leadership in preserving the history of Odenton. The award is given in memory of one of the founders of the trust and recognizes significant contributions to historical and cultural preservation.

The Good Samaritan lodge is the recipient of the 26th Orlando Ridout IV Prize. Donna Ware, county historic sites planner and a board member of the trust, says the award recognizes significant contributions to the preservation of local architectural heritage. It's named for Orlando Ridout IV, the Anne Arundel County resident who served as the first director of the Maryland Historical Trust. Ridout will present the award to the members of the Independent Order of Good Samaritans and Daughters of Samaria Mount Tabor Lodge No. 59.

Built in 1899, the lodge is an important part of county's rural and African-American history and one of only two Good Samaritan lodges operating in Maryland today. According to member Mary Craig of Annapolis, the group was originally known as the United Sons and Daughters of Levi Beneficial Society No. 1 of Mount Tabor. It was founded on the principles in the parable of the Good Samaritan. The group continues to help those in need.

Now numbering about 30, the members completed the restoration of the two-story frame building in June last year after three years of research, grant writing and labor. The building was entered into the National Register of Historic Places in the same month. "We are all very passionate about the lodge," longtime member Delores Hawkins said.

The Anne Arundel County Trust for Preservation is a nonprofit organization created in 1973 to preserve and maintain the history of the county and to foster an awareness of historical and archaeological preservation. The group serves as an adviser to the state historic preservation office on county preservation issues. Two of its annual activities are the awards program and a grants program to benefit preservation work in the county.

Information: 410-349-1458.

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