The Whiskey Rebellion Celebration expands to Canal Place!

Whiskey Painting is just one of the many attractions planned for the weekend of June 9, 10, and 11 in Cumberland, Western Maryland.

Cumberland is celebrating its history as the site of George Washington’s first and last military commands.

The only time a sitting President has lead troops into the field, and the last time he led troops – was when President Washington rode to Cumberland to put down the Whiskey Rebellion.  To commemorate these events and other local history, Cumberland is holding a Heritage Whiskey Rebellion weekend, June 9-11 2017.

The Whiskey Rebellion Fest kicks off a weekend of ‘history served with a twist’. On Saturday June 10, historic Canal Place will host reenactments of scenes from Cumberland’s history by the Embassy Theatre, and authors and academics will provide seminars on local history. The Kegs and Corks tent will serve beer and wine, local and out-of-town food trucks will provide ethnic foods, the Cumberland Theater troupe will perform extracts from Hamilton, children will be able to build Fort Cumberland models and listen to Cumberland stories, a ‘green screen’ will enable visitors to have their photos taken in virtual history scenes, and bands will entertain into the evening. Visitors will watch a Whiskey Painting demonstration by Brent Nelson (see one of his paintings below), and have the opportunity to ‘fire’ at a ‘rebel’.

On Saturday and Sunday, June 10 and 11, visitors can enjoy hundreds of attractions at Heritage Days on historic Washington Street, including food, crafts, and entertainment, with attractions for the kids.

Allegany Museum’s second Whiskey Rebellion Fest will take place on Friday evening, June 9. Guests will enjoy tastings of whiskey and other spirits from a dozen high-end distillers, including Maker’s Mark. As well as the tastings, the event offers live music, historic re-enactments, a colonial ‘pub’ room providing authentic colonial games, an exhibition of historic whiskey bottles, jugs, and ephemera, photos with ‘President Washington’, canapés, and presentations of cigar/whiskey pairings.

Tickets to the Fest are $50 (pre-purchase), or $75 at the door. Tickets are available through the Whiskey Rebellion Cumberland Facebook page, or through Eventbrite.

It’s a big weekend. Book your accommodation and your tickets now.

General Braddock and his senior Aide, George Washington, at Fort Cumberland.

Mountain Queen, by Brent Nelson

Teachers learn about Museum workers

Allegany Museum hosted educators from a variety of grade levels and content areas on Thursday, March 9, 2017 as part of the Chamber of Commerce ACES (Americans for Competitive Enterprise System) Program.

The participants, who are teachers of varied grade levels, learned about how a non-profit operates, and how the business operates in relation to the other museums, libraries and experts in the community.

The program also covered professional careers available in museums. Speakers shared their career paths as well as their knowledge and expertise with the teachers.

The teachers and hosting businesses will have the opportunity to meet again on Monday May 15th to participate in a collaborative presentation of the educators’ ACES experience and to celebrate their graduation.

Teachers and presenters at ACES class, Allegany Museum

See the history of your work life at Allegany Museum

Have you had a job?
A job (or two) in Allegany County?
Then you will be fascinated by Allegany Museum’s exploration of our working lives from 1877 to 2017, which is on display alongside the Smithsonian travelling exhibition The Way We Worked.
Experience the development of safe workplaces, compensation for work related death and injury, how workers gained reasonable hours of work, and the rights to freedom of association, and collective bargaining through three dioramas:
B&O and the Great Strike of 1877
Labor Day marches and the development of local labor unions
The Celanese Corp and the struggle for union representation
The Smithsonian traces the same time period, including all aspects of work across America.
Open Tuesday- Saturday 10 to 4, and Sundays 1-4.
All free!

Vale Fred Dobbs

It is with sincere regret that we mark the passing of Fred Dobbs, a long-time volunteer at Allegany Museum.
Fred unexpectedly passed away at home in February.
He was a loyal and hard-working Museum volunteer, who worked 50 shifts in 2016, and won Volunteer of the Year for several years running.
We could not operate without volunteers, and we appreciate them all very much.
For information about volunteering, email


Whisky Rebellion Fest ~ June 9, 6-10pm

Tickets are now available for the Whiskey Rebellion Fest, June 9 6 to 10 pm, in the Grand Ballroom. The Fest was a sell-out in 2016.

For details and to secure your ticket, click here.

Also in 2017, the first floor will be restored and the Crossroads of America permanent exhibit installed.

Uncovering the beautiful first floor at 3 Pershing St.

The restoration of the 1st floor at Allegany Museum, 3 Pershing St, Cumberland, has started, and treasures are being revealed!
In the picture below you can see the beautiful vaulted ceiling over the entranceway, which is seeing the light once more.
Dividing walls, wall to wall carpet that has covered marble floors, and heritage  acoustic tiles are being ripped out.
One of our living treasures, our Executive Vice President Vic Rezendes, is revealed in the third photo.
Drop in and sneak a look, then go up to the second floor for the Smithsonian The Way We Worked display. open during usual hours until March 24.

The vaulted ceiling makes its long-anticipated reappearance.

Vice President Vic Rezendes

Frederick Douglass in Cumberland

Black History Month:
Did you know that Frederick Douglass delivered a lecture in Cumberland?
On September 23 1879, Marshal Douglass arrived to lecture for the Emancipation celebration. Here is the story 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.”

Marshall Frederick Douglass

The porch of the Queen City Hotel

The Way We Worked Opening a great success

“The Way We Worked” opened at the Allegany Museum yesterday, with an attendance estimated at 75 people.

The exhibit will run through March 24, 2017 and explores the strength and spirit of American workers on both the national as well as local level.

Depicted here are front row left to right, Victor Rezendes, Allegany Museum; Maryland Delegate Mike McKay; Theresa Worden, Maryland Humanities Museum on Main Street Program; Albert Feldstein, Maryland Humanities Board of Directors; Carl Belt Jr., President of the Belt Group; and Gary Bartik, Allegany Museum. Back row left to right are Larry Wolfe, President of Teamsters Local 453; Eugene Frazier, Cumberland City Councilman; Thomas Clayton, Town of Luke Councilman; and Jake Shade, Allegany County Commissioner.

In the second pic, Alice Cooney plays with the B&O train bell  at the exhibition. She is with her father, Sean  Cooney.

Visitors from five Maryland Counties help install The Way We Worked

Maryland Humanities and people from four Maryland museums visited Allegany Museum last Thursday and Friday to learn about installing and maintaining the Smithsonian travelling exhibition, The Way We Worked.
The travelling exhibition, accompanied by Allegany Museum’s dioramas, will be on display from February 5 until March 24.
Allegany Museum’s dioramas explore how working life has changed for the better in Allegany county over the last 150 years, focusing on the railroads, the Celanese Corp, and the local unions.
Please join us at 3 pm on Saturday February 4 for the Grand Opening. You are very welcome to wear an insignia, uniform, cap, or other items from a place you or a family member have worked in Allegany County, and you will have a chance to record your work story.
There is also a Children’s Sensory and Discovery Room on the theme of work.
The opening and the exhibition are free.
Allegany Museum, 3 Pershing St Cumberland MD

Residents share photos and memories for the Way We Worked


As part of The Way We Worked exhibitions that begin on February 4, the Western Maryland Regional Library has been collecting photos at “Scanner Nights”. These are now presented on the Western Maryland’s Historical Library ( website.

As well, these and other photos and artifacts will be on display at the Way We Worked exhibitions at six locations in Allegany County.

At the Grand Opening of The Way We Worked, 3:00 pm February 4 at Allegany Museum, 3 Pershing St Cumberland, you will have the opportunity to share your stories of working life in Western Maryland.

Wear a badge, cap, or other work item, and record your story for display at the exhibition, and as a permanent record on the Allegany Museum website.

The Museum’s Grand Ballroom will display the travelling Smithsonian exhibition, as well as stories of local railroads, manufacturing, and unions. All exhibitions are free.

Just a few of the gems that have been contributed to the Whilbr collection: photos of horses standing near William Stantons’ sugar house 1910; miners and horse at the Stanton George’s Creek Coal Company near Clarysville, 1917-1926; Lewis Hachman’s thrashing team at Bittinger barn, and J. E. Midgarden, J. E. Keatley, and L. F. White, Jr of the Allegany Ballistics Laboratory, standing in front of an A-3 Polaris prior to its static testing, 1972.

The exhibition will remain open during usual Museum hours until March 24.

J. E. Midgarden, J. E. Keatley, and L. F. White, Jr of the Allegany Ballistics Laboratory, standing in front of an A-3 Polaris prior to its static testing, 1972.

For more information, contact Allegany Museum, 301-777-7200;

Lewis Hachman’s thrashing team at Bittinger Barn 1910

Miners and horse at the Stanton George’s Creek Coal Company near Clarysville, 1917-1926

William Stantons’ sugar house 1910

License to permit William Stanton to produce maple sugar.