Harford History

August 06, 2006

1889: A Grand Union `Pic Nic'

According to a local newspaper article in 1889, "Wednesday the 7th of August was the day fixed for the joint pic nic of Bel Air, Mt. Carmel and Union Chapel Methodist Protestant Sabbath Schools, in the grove at Union Chapel, about one mile from Wilna and five from Bel Air."

The community of Wilna included the land around the Wilna Post Office at what is now the corner of Old Joppa and Hollingsworth roads. Sunday school was an important part of community life, as the newspaper article shows: "A large concourse of people from far and near were upon the ground during the day and evening, indeed it was said to be the largest gathering ever seen there and all were bent upon pleasure and having a good time generally.

"Swings and croquet and various amusements were indulged in by young and old, to their heart's content. The Emmorton Cornet Band was also on hand to entertain. The Bel Air School arrived at the picnic in about twenty vehicles of various kinds, including Messrs. Henry Record and Sons' large four-horse team, arrayed in flags and bells and carrying 30 or more children and adults. The tables were nearly 100 feet long, divided into three sections. Over 30 gallons of ice cream were served, besides large quantities of cake of all varieties."

[ Source: Wilna: "On the Road from Bel Air to Joppa." Harford Historical Bulletin, Number 91. Winter 2002. Research by Harford County Public Library.]

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