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History & Lore

Why does the groom always stand on the bride’s right?

It’s usually because that’s where the nearest exit is.     No, just kidding. The groom’s position is a tradition dating back to medieval times. It is also why many European countries drive on, according to us, the wrong side of the road.

Today’s organic methods were the only options for gardeners in the early 19th century

We had a storm and terrible rain this week … my garden almost washed away; a dozen tulips were washed out of the ground and carried outside the garden fence. No one has seen such a flood in 10 years.

For Annapolis town crier Squire ­Frederick, ­Independence Day is a joyous occasion

Folks who live and work in Annapolis, used to seeing guys in breeches and plumed tricorn hats, scarcely bat an eye when Town Crier Fred Taylor strolls by.     Tourists and school children are another story. They squeal in delight when meeting “Squire Frederick,” as Taylor’s known hereabouts.     Taylor’s town crier is hard to miss. He stands tall (a head taller than your average guy). His social behavior sets him further apart.

Three Founding Fathers met their maker on July 4

By strange coincidence, three of the first five U.S. presidents died on July 4 — with our second and third presidents dying within hours of each other on the 50th anniversary of ­Independence Day.

Little Coconut, Pineapple and Twix taught these middle-schoolers a big lesson

With their feet gingerly navigating mud and grasses at the water’s edge as they prepare to release three baby northern diamondback terrapins into the wild, these Severn River Middle School students could be almost anywhere along Chesapeake Bay.     Poplar Island, however, is no ordinary locale. The island, like the careful return of the terrapins to their birthplace, is a unique and successful example of environmental stewardship. Visiting there, students are in position to understand our human impact, both positive and negative, on the world around us.

The historic church at Brick Church Road

Four hundred years of history converge at Anne Arundel County’s tiny All Hallows Parish, at the intersection of Maryland Rt. 2 with Brick Church Road, in Edgewater. Perhaps you’ve noticed its State of Maryland roadside historical marker. Were you to stop and read, here’s what you’d find — and a bit more.     Back in 1692, the British Crown decreed the Anglican Church the official church of the colony of Maryland. The province was divided into 30 official Anglican Parishes, one being “All Hallows, South River Parish.”

Lily Fisher-Flaherty is the first woman jousting champ in 55 years

Kicking up dirt, a girl and her horse gallop hard through three arches in a dusty field. The girl’s lance, six feet long and chiseled to the point of a needle, is aimed at a ring that may as well be a dust speck.     The girl is Lily Fisher-Flaherty, a 19-year-old college student who lives in Lusby. Her horse is Sunny, a spirited palomino American Warmblood. Together, they are the winners of the 2016 Maryland State Jousting Tournament.

Harriet Elizabeth Brown portrait puts a face to the name that helped earn equal pay for teachers of all races

Equal pay for Maryland teachers across the races was a battle quietly fought and won in Calvert County 80 years ago, thanks to the efforts of a young, determined African American teacher, Harriet Elizabeth Brown.     We all know the name Thurgood Marshall, the lawyer who helped her prevail and went on to great things, including the U.S. Supreme Court.

Maryland Nurses fought death and despair in WWI France

Amid the horrors of World War I, battlefield nurses were angels of mercy. America’s battered and beleaguered doughboys knew that for certain, and you will, too, after listening to Maryland storyteller Ellouise Schoettler recount Ready to Serve: Unknown Stories of 64 World War I Nurses from Maryland.

An all-American chain of monuments to peace

What are these blue stars? Whizzing along Rt. 3, we see them here and there along the roadside. Just off Rt. 3, there’s another in the front garden of the Crofton Library. This blue star is mounted on a bronze plaque in a large stone. Stop a moment in the library safe space, and you read that it is a Blue Star Memorial By-Way marker paying tribute to the Armed Forces of America.