Violence, then celebration at the Celanese Corp

In 1935, the National Labor Relations Act (also known as the Wagner Act) was passed. The Act guaranteed employees the right to “self-organization, to form, join, or assist labor organizations, to bargain collectively through representatives of their own choosing…”
The passing of the Wagner Act did not mean that employers would accept unionization in their workplaces, however.
Workers at the Celanese Plant in Cumberland continued to strike for the right to organize. This sometimes resulted in violence, as the item below from the Cumberland Evening News of November 1936 records.
By December 1936, however, the Celanese Corp agreed to the employees’ proposals (see ‘Happy Days are Here Again’, below).
violence-flares-cumberland_evening_times_sat__nov_28__1936_1congratulations-cumberland_evening_times_wed__dec_2__1936_

Paint and Sip: Fun for adults as well as children at the Allegany Museum Nutcracker event

Grab a hot chocolate, an apron, and take a seat!

On Friday December 2, 6:00 pm, Shannon Shine will instruct you step by step to create an original piece of art. At the end of the evening you’ll take home a one-of-a-kind painting, and hopefully a newfound talent.

Painting Fees: children $15 per 8×10 canvas, adults $25 per 11×14 canvas.

If you need a break from your new-found creativity, you will be able to view the largest display of nutcrackers ever shown in Maryland, exhibited in the Grand Ballroom.

All equipment will be supplied, along with unlimited hot chocolate.

(This is a children-friendly event, so we will not be allowing alcoholic drinks.)

Don’t forget, as part of the Nutcracker event series, children will be able to attend the event opening on November 25, and then participate in every Nutty Kids’ Saturday event, from December 3 through the 17th, 10 am-12 noon. Children who attend will be able to collect a unique nutcracker at each event, to make up a souvenir group of four, and have a chance to win a tablet.

All events except Paint and Sip are free, and held in the Grand Ballroom of the Allegany Museum, 3 Pershing St Cumberland. For more information, call (301) 777-7200 or go to our website alleganymuseummd.org

nutcrackerpaintsip

Cumberland Historic Holiday Home Tour December 10 2016

The Annual Cumberland Historic Holiday Home Tour is located in the Dingle this year!

Enjoy Open Houses at six decorated historic homes, and horseback carolers during the tour hours.

The Dingle was established in 1913 as a private community at the western edge of Cumberland – immediately south of Braddock Road. The area’s original homes and lots were designed by architects and landscape professionals associated with the Celanese Corporation. One of America’s first gated communities, the Dingle became a landmark in West Side. The two streets in the development, named Windsor and Buckingham, reflected the Celanese group’s English roots.

The Open Houses are at 814, 822, & 829 Buckingham Ave, and 818, 819, & 827 Windsor Ave from 2 to 6 pm.

The Gilchrist Gallery and Museum at 104 Washington Street, and the Gordon-Roberts House at 218 Washington Street will also be open for ticket holders during tour hours.

Visit the cumberlandhistorytours.com web site for more information.

Ticket sales are limited, and advance purchase is required.

Tickets are $25 per person, and can be purchased at the Book Center, North Centre St, and the Gordon Roberts House, 218 Washington St in Cumberland, or online

BUY YOUR TICKET HERE

cumberland-holiday-tour-16-final

 

Museum soon to restore 1st floor, install new permanent exhibition

Allegany Museum will soon undertake a grand renovation and installation of a large, permanent exhibition at its premises at 3 Pershing St Cumberland.

allegany-museum-entrance2-w-smithsonianThe entrance to the Museum, which is now on Pershing St, will be reconfigured to face Interstate 68.  The Memorial Hospital Portico will have new life, this time as the entrance to the newly renovated and restored first floor.

The first floor is currently divided into offices, most of which are now empty. The renovation will begin in the next few weeks, and tear down suspended acoustic tiles to reveal the domed ceiling, rip up carpets from the marble floors, and remove partitions that have divided the floor into individual offices. Once that is complete, the exhibition will be constructed.

The new entrance will lead into the extensive Crossroads of America exhibition, slated to be open fall 2017.

PrintCrossroads of America will occupy most of the first floor of the Museum, and provide a sensory as well as visual story of human movement in the area, by road, water, and rail.

The exhibition will center on the National Road and its evolution from Nemacolin’s Trail, the ancient Native American trail that crossed the barrier of the Allegheny Mountains via the Cumberland Narrows Mountain pass. Visitors will be able to walk along a reconstructed ‘road’ that will display vehicles such as an authentic Conestoga wagon, and a Model T Ford. Each portion of the road will be constructed in accordance to conditions at the time. Visitors will also be able to participate in interactive exhibits.

 

Allegany Museum has been awarded $240,000 from the Transportation Enrichment Program of the Maryland Department of Transportation to assist development of the exhibition.

While government grants will pay most of costs of the remodeling and the new exhibition, the Museum does not have any income to pay for staff or for day-to-day expenses, like power, cleaning, and so on. Nearly everything is done by unpaid volunteers. We always welcome new volunteers, donations, and endowments.

crossroads-1-1crossroads-2

A nutcracker Christmas at Allegany Museum

Allegany Museum is going crackers for Christmas! – Nutcrackers, that is.
The largest display of nutcrackers ever shown in Maryland will open on Friday December 2nd in the grand ballroom on the 2nd floor of Allegany Museum, after the civic Tree Lighting Ceremony.
The Opening Reception will open the huge exhibition, including rare historic nutcrackers in the form of wood carvings of soldiers, knights, kings, and other professions. There will be refreshments for all attending.
The Opening Reception kicks off the Nutcracker Season which will run every Saturday from December 3 through 17. The series of three “Nutty Kids Saturdays” begins December 3 with the history of the nutcracker and “cracker craft”. On December 10 there will be book readings, craft, and a visit from Santa. “Nutty music” on December 17 will complete the kids’ series. All “Nutty Saturdays” run from 10 am-12 noon, and are free. They are most suitable for children between the ages of 4 to 10.
Children under 10 can collect a different nutcracker ornament at each event, from the Opening Reception through the “Nutty” Kids Saturdays to make a personal collection of four ornaments, and can enter a drawing for a special nutcracker.
All events are free.
For more information, call (301) 777-7200

nutcracker_group

Memorial Hospital Portico to be feature of renovated Allegany Museum

The Memorial Hospital Portico will star once more in Cumberland, this time as the entrance to the newly renovated and restored Allegany Museum at 3 Pershing St.

Memorial Hospital, which was established on Baltimore Ave as the Western Maryland Hospital in 1888, and was renamed in 1929 in honor of those who gave their life in World War I.

The entrance to the Museum, which is now on Pershing St, will be reconfigured to face Interstate 68. The new entrance will lead into the extensive Crossroads of America exhibition, slated to be open fall 2017. Crossroads of America will occupy most of the first floor of the Museum, and provide a sensory as well as visual story of human movement in the area, by road, water, and rail.

While government grants will pay most of costs of the remodeling and the new exhibition, the Museum does not have any income to pay for staff or for day-to-day expenses, like power, cleaning, and so on. Nearly everything is done by unpaid volunteers. We always welcome new volunteers, donations, and endowments.

memorial-hospital

exterior-museum-sketch

Sketch of the new exterior

1915 Model T donated for Crossroads of America exhibit

Allegany Museum would like to thank Randy & Donna Shaffer for their generous donation of a beautiful 1915 Ford Model T.
The Model T is in original mint condition and quite possibly the oldest passenger car in Allegany County.
the car will be a major element concerning the exhibition of the first National Road in America, which started in Cumberland.
It will be on exhibition in 2017 when the final phase of renovation is finished at the Allegany Museum, 3 Pershing St.

model-t-shaffer

Randy Shaffer with Gary Bartik, Museum Director, and Neal Furlow, who provided transport for the vehicle.

Cumberland’s first celebration of Maryland Emancipation Day

The City of Cumberland has issued an official Proclamation of November 6 2016 as the Celebration of Emancipation Day.

This auspicious event will be celebrated with an interactive Underground Railroad experience at Emmanuel Episcopal Church grounds and tunnel on November 6 at 7:00 pm.

The focus of the event will be the story of Samuel Denson, a slave who came to Cumberland from Mississippi, up the Underground Railroad line. Although Cumberland was in slave territory, he decided not to continue on his own journey to freedom, but rather to stay, pretending to be a freedman, to work for the freedom of others.

The event is a joint venture of Allegany College of Maryland’s NAACP Club, FSU’s African American Studies Program, Emmanuel Episcopal Church, and the Jane Gates Heritage House.

proclamationdenson

Sharing opinions with civility

At Allegany Museum, we are preparing (with much excitement) the dioramas for the Way We Worked exhibition, which will show Feb 3 to March 24 next year, alongside the Smithsonian exhibits.
We are uncovering many intriguing snippets about working life in Allegany County over the last 150 years.
This one (below), from the Cumberland Times News of July 11 1939, shows that it is possible to be reasonable and civil, even when dissenting. The talent for this seems to have almost disappeared in the lead up to the presidential election of 2016. It is from a Times News ‘man-on’the-street’ collection of opinions about the possible loss of WPA projects in Cumberland.

14570217_1307872895892257_7241794654929381297_n

Frederick Douglass visits Cumberland

Marshal Frederick Douglass arrived by express train at Cumberland’s Queen City hotel on September 23 1879, to deliver a lecture for the Emancipation celebration (from the Washington Post, Sept. 24, 1879):
“Emancipation Day” was yesterday celebrated in this city in a very enthusiastic manner by the colored people, who flocked to the city in large numbers from the neighboring towns of Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Maryland. It was a gala day for the colored race.

About 2,000 visitors were in town, and the streets presented an animated appearance. The weather was cloudy but no rain fell, and everything went off pleasantly. About noon a procession was formed, which passed through the principal streets and wended its way to the Fair grounds, which are located in a commanding position to the east of the city. Several Masonic and other secret societies appeared in line.

Marshal Douglass arrived on the express train from Washington at 2:10 P.M. He was met at the Queen City hotel by an immense crowd of people, and escorted through the principal streets in a barouche, in which were seated Mayor William J. Read, Hon. Henry W. Hoffman, and Rev. B. H. Lee, the pastor of the A.M.E. Church if this city, who was also the president of the meeting. The procession arrived at the Fair grounds at 3 o’clock, escorted by a band of music.

q-c-station