Benjamin Banneker Historical Park & Museum

Benjamin Banneker Historical Park & Museum This Baltimore County historical park and museum celebrates the life and accomplishments of Benjamin Banneker. The park land was once the lifelong home and farmstead of Mr.
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Banneker. Visit the homestead of freeman Benjamin Banneker (1731-1806), self-taught mathematician and astronomer, published author of six successful almanacs, naturalist, surveyor, clock-maker, bee-keeper, and abolitionist. Enjoy the museum gallery celebrating his life and visit a re-creation of his cabin and gardens. Walk the trails across his 100-acre farm and orchard. Be inspired by his incredible story and lifelong accomplishments! We offer a variety of educational history and nature programs and events throughout the year. Please see the Events page for the current schedule.

*Should you require special accommodations (i.e., language interpreter, large print, etc.) for a visit to our museum, please give as much notice as possible by calling the museum/park office at 410-887-1081 or the Therapeutic Office at 410-887-5370. For our friends who use a TDD, please dial 410-877-5319. The museum is wheelchair accessible, as is our picnic gazebo and the Bannaky/Treuth House.

Operating as usual

Early yellow blooms on long, graceful branches, is it a forsythia? No, it's a native spicebush! Just crush a few leaves,...
04/02/2021

Early yellow blooms on long, graceful branches, is it a forsythia? No, it's a native spicebush! Just crush a few leaves, inhale the spicy aroma, and you'll understand its name. Yellow flowers give way to bright red berries that the birds and other wildlife love. Native Americans and settlers brewed medicinal teas from the spice bush for a long list of ailments.
#bannekerpark #spicebush

Today I'm just hoppy to be a frog!#bannekerpark #frogsofinstagram #itsafrogslife
03/31/2021

Today I'm just hoppy to be a frog!
#bannekerpark #frogsofinstagram #itsafrogslife

Lesser celadine, pretty with its sunny yellow flowers and heart-shaped leaves, but resist planting it in your garden! Th...
03/30/2021

Lesser celadine, pretty with its sunny yellow flowers and heart-shaped leaves, but resist planting it in your garden! This aggressive non-native plant appears early and crowds out the native plants that sustain native insects and animals.

Today's Parent and Me program was all about frogs. We went on a hike to see where the frogs lay their eggs, caught flies...
03/26/2021

Today's Parent and Me program was all about frogs. We went on a hike to see where the frogs lay their eggs, caught flies with our sticky tongues, and jumped for joy in a frog leap race!
#bannekerpark #parentandme
#lovemykids

A Taste of 1790, a private workshopHow about your own time and space to learn traditional cooking and baking techniques?...
03/24/2021

A Taste of 1790, a private workshop
How about your own time and space to learn traditional cooking and baking techniques? You and your small group of friends will work with Foodways historians and go hands-on with a wood-fired hearth and period utensils. You can even take home your creations! Interested? E-mail [email protected] for details and scheduling.
Photo: Ekaterina Bolovstova
#baltimorecountyparksandrec #bannekerpark #foodways

It must be spring, the catkins are out on the hazel ready for a breeze to carry their pollen.#bannekerpark
03/23/2021

It must be spring, the catkins are out on the hazel ready for a breeze to carry their pollen.
#bannekerpark

The Camellia are comin' out! Watch spring unfold in the park every day until sunset. Our nature trails, gardens, and orc...
03/22/2021

The Camellia are comin' out! Watch spring unfold in the park every day until sunset. Our nature trails, gardens, and orchard are awakening just for you!
#bannekerpark

Spring equinox is finally here and the okra, corn, pole beans, pie pumpkins, peas, carrots, onions, and more are on thei...
03/20/2021

Spring equinox is finally here and the okra, corn, pole beans, pie pumpkins, peas, carrots, onions, and more are on their way! These are all foods Mr. Banneker would have grown in his vegetable garden. Herbs were a must in the kitchen garden for food prep, household uses, and medicines. We’re starting rosemary, thyme, basil, chives, sage, and lavender. And for the pollinators and for pretty, we’re starting wild flowers, zinnias, sun flowers, and bachelors buttons.
We’re getting ready for a bountiful summer, how about you? What will you be planting?
#bannekerpark #gardenlife #springplanting

Hello, little hellebore! This dainty perennial is one of the earliest to bloom and is a cousin to the buttercup. Don’t l...
03/18/2021

Hello, little hellebore! This dainty perennial is one of the earliest to bloom and is a cousin to the buttercup. Don’t let its sweet face fool you! Deer avoid it for its bad-tasting toxin, protoanemonin. (It’s only a problem to humans if eaten in large quantities.)
Photo: Karen Dillon
#bannekerpark #springtime

Benjamin Banneker Historical Park & Museum's cover photo
03/17/2021

Benjamin Banneker Historical Park & Museum's cover photo

03/08/2021
CHCH_118_HD-Base_Rev001_1

Take a look! Our director Melanie Dance Dengler and staff member Chase Louden shared the life and legacy of Benjamin Banneker on PBS on the Chavis Chronicles last week.
https://vimeo.com/517384233

This is "CHCH_118_HD-Base_Rev001_1" by Clara Wilkerson on Vimeo, the home for high quality videos and the people who love them.

A Taste of 1790, a private workshopHow about your own time and space to learn traditional cooking and baking techniques?...
02/24/2021

A Taste of 1790, a private workshop
How about your own time and space to learn traditional cooking and baking techniques? You and your small group of friends will work with Foodways historians and go hands-on with a wood-fired hearth and period utensils. You can even take home your creations! Interested? E-mail [email protected] for details and scheduling.
Photo: Ekaterina Bolovstova
#baltimorecountyparksandrec

Today we reached 5,000 followers on Facebook! Sending out love to all our followers and fans who value the life and lega...
02/19/2021

Today we reached 5,000 followers on Facebook! Sending out love to all our followers and fans who value the life and legacy of Mr. Banneker and understand the invaluable lessons he leaves behind for future generations. Thank you!

Here are five young African Americans doing exciting work in conservation and following in the footsteps of Benjamin Ban...
02/17/2021
Young Black Conservationists to Know | The Conservation Fund

Here are five young African Americans doing exciting work in conservation and following in the footsteps of Benjamin Banneker who respected and studied the natural world. We are particularly excited about Atiya Wells who trained as a Master Naturalist at Benjamin Banneker!

African Americans in Conservation: Young Black Conservationists to Know Each February as we celebrate Black History Month, we recognize the achievements of African Americans and their contributions to our nation, as well as their ongoing struggle...

Sightings are rare, but there's a new phenomenon in Maryland: coyotes!
02/16/2021
Coyote sighting in Baltimore's Herring Run Park shows they're now statewide

Sightings are rare, but there's a new phenomenon in Maryland: coyotes!

BALTIMORE (WBFF) - A recent coyote sighting in the heart of Baltimore City serves as a reminder that coyotes have become more common throughout the state in recent decades. Bill Curtis captured this photo of a coyote in Herring Run Park, in northeast Baltimore, on Friday afternoon. He said coyotes i...

National Park Service Chesapeake Bay
02/10/2021

National Park Service Chesapeake Bay

Benjamin Banneker, born in 1731 in Baltimore County, MD, is often considered the first Black man of science. Born to a family of free Black homesteaders, Banneker was able to receive an education at a nearby one-room schoolhouse and was taught to read & write by his grandmother.

As an adult, Banneker contributed to society as a self-taught mathematician, astronomer, almanac writer, surveyor, abolitionist and naturalist during the late 1700s. Banneker was also noted for his correspondence with Thomas Jefferson and for surveying Washington D.C.

https://www.whitehousehistory.org/benjamin-banneker

#BlackHistoryMonth #BlackHistoryMonth Benjamin Banneker Historical Park & Museum Baltimore County Department of Recreation and Parks

"Before visiting the park, I was only vaguely familiar with Benjamin Banneker’s story, but by the time I left, I felt ed...
02/08/2021
Every Month is Black History Month at the Benjamin Banneker Park - Find Your Chesapeake

"Before visiting the park, I was only vaguely familiar with Benjamin Banneker’s story, but by the time I left, I felt educated and empowered by his legacy."

Even though Covid precautions have closed the museum's doors for the time being, you can still learn about Mr. Banneker while walking his farmstead and enjoying the park. Please see our Events page for outdoor programs that will help you discover more about Mr. Banneker.

https://www.findyourchesapeake.com/trip-ideas/article/every-month-is-black-history-month-at-the-benjamin-banneker-museum

Find Your Chesapeake is focused on connecting people to authentic Chesapeake Experiences.

Benjamin Banneker Historical Park & Museum's cover photo
02/03/2021

Benjamin Banneker Historical Park & Museum's cover photo

Our "Banneker's World Scavenger Hunt" is now available for Black History Month! Please note that there are 10 pages to t...
01/31/2021

Our "Banneker's World Scavenger Hunt" is now available for Black History Month! Please note that there are 10 pages to this document. If you would like a pdf copy emailed to you, please contact [email protected]
In order to be eligible for a prize, you MUST register at this link: bit.ly/BBHPMregister
#BannekerScavengerHunt2021

Enjoy the full moon tonight! Whether you call it the Wolf Moon, the Snow Moon or the Hunger Moon, it's beautiful!
01/27/2021
Full Wolf Moon falls in late January 2021 | EarthSky.org

Enjoy the full moon tonight! Whether you call it the Wolf Moon, the Snow Moon or the Hunger Moon, it's beautiful!

Enjoy the full-looking moon in late January 2021, as this nocturnal sun brings some good cheer to the Northern Hemisphere's long winter night.

Happy Birthday, Dr. King!#MLKDay2021 #MLK
01/17/2021

Happy Birthday, Dr. King!
#MLKDay2021 #MLK

Winter is the perfect time to study the stars like Benjamin Banneker. Here's a 'handy' guide for measuring out distances...
01/11/2021
What are degrees, arc minutes and arc seconds? | EarthSky.org

Winter is the perfect time to study the stars like Benjamin Banneker. Here's a 'handy' guide for measuring out distances in the night sky.

How do skywatchers measure distances in the night sky? Here's how to understand it when they speak of objects as being several degrees (or several arc minutes or arc seconds) apart.

Bring Parker the Frog with you the next time you hop on over to Banneker Historical Park!
01/04/2021

Bring Parker the Frog with you the next time you hop on over to Banneker Historical Park!

Leap into 2021 with Parker the Frog!

To participate in the Parker the Frog campaign:

Print, cut out or color Parker the Frog (PDF) to bring with you on adventures to County Parks.
Share your picture.to our Facebook or Twitter using #InMyOwnParkyard.

Email your picture to: [email protected]
to enter to win a monthly prize. One entry valid per park per email address.

For downloadable printables, visit: www.baltimorecountymd.gov/departments/recreation/

HELLO, 2021!"Never abandon your vision.  Keep reaching to further your dreams." ---Benjamin Bannekerphoto: Rekicevic Nen...
12/31/2020

HELLO, 2021!
"Never abandon your vision. Keep reaching to further your dreams." ---Benjamin Banneker

photo: Rekicevic Nenad

Here's another chance at the conjunction! Jupiter and Saturn were seen at their closest through some breaks in the cloud...
12/22/2020

Here's another chance at the conjunction!
Jupiter and Saturn were seen at their closest through some breaks in the clouds around here on this winter solstice. They will still be quite close together over the next few days, and it is looking like clearer skies tonight. Look low to the southwest to pick the pair out of the twilight by around 5:15 or 5:30. Be sure to look for a good view by 6:00 because they will be setting lower and gone below the horizon by around 7:00 p.m.
Photo: Steve Bilanow

Holiday handiwork! Three boys from our recent Kids Outdoors program show off the holiday wreaths they made while learnin...
12/22/2020

Holiday handiwork! Three boys from our recent Kids Outdoors program show off the holiday wreaths they made while learning about evergreens. Good work, guys!

Tonight's the night! Here are NASA's tips on how to see the Great Conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn and take pics.Please...
12/21/2020
'Great Conjunction' 2020: NASA tips to see Jupiter and Saturn shine as a 'Christmas Star'

Tonight's the night! Here are NASA's tips on how to see the Great Conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn and take pics.
Please share your pictures with us!

Saturn and Jupiter have slowly been moving closer to each other over the past few weeks, and will converge on Dec. 21 in an event astronomers call the "great conjunction" — also referred to as the "Christmas Star." Here's how to view the event.

Keep your eyes on the skies as we get closer to the winter solstice! In this photo from a few nights ago you can see the...
12/18/2020

Keep your eyes on the skies as we get closer to the winter solstice! In this photo from a few nights ago you can see the Jupiter and Saturn moving closer. On the 21st they will appear to be a double planet.
Photo: Steve Bilanow

What a perfect day for some fun in the snow!
12/17/2020

What a perfect day for some fun in the snow!

Throwing it back to the summer time when the trees in our orchard were lush and green! 🌳#trailtuesday #historicorchard #...
12/08/2020

Throwing it back to the summer time when the trees in our orchard were lush and green!
🌳
#trailtuesday #historicorchard #bbhpm

Happy Thanksgiving!Don't worry, this beautiful bird is safe and sound! He was the guest of honor at our recent Talking T...
11/27/2020

Happy Thanksgiving!
Don't worry, this beautiful bird is safe and sound! He was the guest of honor at our recent Talking Turkey program!

Thanks + giving: Being thankful for whatever you have and sharing it.
11/25/2020

Thanks + giving: Being thankful for whatever you have and sharing it.

Address

300 Oella Ave
Catonsville, MD
21228

Opening Hours

Tuesday 10:00 - 16:00
Wednesday 10:00 - 16:00
Thursday 10:00 - 16:00
Friday 10:00 - 16:00
Saturday 10:00 - 16:00
Sunday 12:00 - 16:00

Telephone

(410) 887-1081

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I am resident of Rockville, MD, and will be offering a PowerPoint lecture program at the Montgomery County History Conference 2021, January 22 – 30, 2021. See https://montgomeryhistory.org/2021-mchc/ My program will be entitled "Periodical Cicadas in Montgomery County: An Intersection of Natural History and Human History". In the program I will talk about Benjamin Banneker's observations on periodical cicadas during the latter 1700s, and his likening them to periodic comets. Here is a summary of the program. I hope you can join in with the virtual Conference. Program Summary: Montgomery County is a very ethnically and culturally diverse community. This is one of our great strengths. Montgomery County also has some lesser known, yet very numerous, native residents, the 17-year periodical cicadas that visited us with great gusto in 1987 and 2004. They are expected to be with us again in the spring of 2021. The reappearance of the periodicals, on schedule, every 17 years suggests a certain measure of stability in our local environment, a natural sign for us. These cicadas are not dangerous. They do not sting or bite and carry no diseases. They do not eat our vegetation and gardens. They tend to be very numerous, and plague-like at times. When these periodical cicadas appear and are so numerous, they offer wonderful opportunities for observing and studying nature, right in our own backyards and neighborhoods. Cicadas require trees for their life cycle and survival. Without trees, there are no cicadas, and without trees in our neighborhoods, our quality of life would be less. Trees also help to sequester or remove carbon from the atmosphere and thus combat climate change. So, we have something very much in common with our cicada friends, we both need trees! This PowerPoint lecture will demonstrate the intersection of cicada natural history and human history. An example will be a focus on cicadas in Bethesda during 1987. The studies of Benjamin Banneker on periodical cicadas during the 1700s in Maryland will lay the cornerstone for the historical progression of the cicadas every 17 years since then. As we look ahead to this spring of 2021, welcome these native Montgomery Countians back into our neighborhoods. .................................................... Some of my notes on Banneker, cicadas, and comets are these, which I'll discuss at the conference: Perhaps the earliest observation and study of these periodical cicadas in Maryland, were those of Benjamin Banneker on his farm. Benjamin Banneker was one of the first naturalists to record scientific observations of the 17-year cicadas. He did so in the area of Ellicott Mills and Ellicott City, during the middle and late 1700s. Banneker was a free African American, living from 1731 – 1806, in Maryland. He was mostly self-educated, and became proficient in mathematics, astronomy, and natural history. He wrote several almanacs, was a surveyor, land owner, and farmer. He helped Andrew Ellicott with the survey that established the borders of the District of Columbia, in 1791 and 1792. He kept a series of journals and notebooks on his many scientific and astronomical observations, including his cicada studies. As a naturalist, Banneker’s scientific observations of cicadas are not well known. But they were accurate, informative, and right in line with the 17-year periodicity of the cicadas we talk about here today. He was among the first naturalists to make those observations. Banneker wrote in his journal, in the year 1800: “The first great Locust [cicada] year that I can Remember was 1749. I was then about Seventeen years of age…Again in the year 1766…they made a Second [appearance]…I then being about thirty-four years old…Again in 1783 which was Seventeen years since their second appearance to me, they made their third…and they may be expected again in the year 1800…So that if I may venture So to express it, their periodical return is Seventeen years, but they like the Comets, make but a short stay with us…” Banneker compared the periodic and predictable lives of the 17-year cicadas, which we observe, to be like that of comets, which also are periodical and predictable. Both take a long time to re-appear, but when they do re-appear, it is with great gusto. Both get our attention! So, Banneker observed these cicadas for 51 years, and correctly predicted the next emergence. His cicada observations for the 17-year periods of 1749, 1766, 1783, and 1800 align perfectly with every 17-year cycle since then, to lead us to 1987, 2004, and into this year of 2021. Periodical cicadas have a long recorded history in Maryland. By the will and grace of Mother Nature, a comet will make a pass by Earth this spring, concurrent with the pass-by of the periodical cicadas, during May and June. Comet Pons-Winnecke will be visible in the sky from mid-May through latter June. This comet is named for the French astronomer who first discovered and described it during the 1800s. Jean Louis Pons originally discovered the comet in 1819, and it was rediscovered in 1858 by German astronomer August Theodor Winnecke, who helped to describe the orbital period. Comet Pons-Winnecke has an orbital period of about 6 1/3 years. It will be closest to Earth, on this pass, in late-June, and will be seen during the late night and early morning hours. So, by my rough calculations, these two natural events - the re-appearance of the periodical cicadas every 17 years, and the re-appearance of Comet Pons-Winnecke, every 6 1/3 years - might not coincide again until about the year 2072, 51 years from now. So, this is a rare concurrent event, seen by most people just once in their lifetime. And we will see and witness both of these events, together, during May and June of this year, 2021. Here is a sky chart I found on the internet. It is from Holland, the Netherlands, so it is a European view of what is expected. I am searching for something similar that in a North American view. But, look at the track of the comet from early May through late June, 2021. During 1987, my data shows that the cicadas were emergent in Montgomery County from May 13 – June 26, and during 2004 from May 7 – June 14. These two events really will be coincident or concurrent. The entire above ground existence of the periodical cicadas in the spring 2021 probably will be covered, or matched here, during the pass-by of Comet Pons-Winnecke. And, the comet will be seen to cross the plane of the planets on June 4, between Jupiter and Saturn. [Note Pluto and Neptune at the extreme ends of the orbital plane]. Jupiter and Saturn will become aligned here in December very soon, in the SW sky, around the time of the winter solstice.
Loving all of the events and programs you have coming up this fall. Thank you!
It's a great place for gathering, hiking, festivals, history and an enjoyable day outside.
Sun Don’t Set in the Mornin’ sung by Jubilee Voices on Saturday at the Fair.
Thanks to all the museum staff and volunteers who helped make the Colonial Market Fair a success!
Ben would appreciate this view--with the Earth's moon alongside Jupiter dimmed by clouds, one can see the Moons of Jupiter in the same view. https://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap190523.html Jupiter is bright and high in the sky around midnight now, reaching opposition on June 10th.
A memorial yesterday at Mount Vernon:
Historic London Town & Gardens near Annapolis is hosting events this weekend of interest to folks here: 1) Uncertain Freedom: 1864 each day 10-4:30 Sept. 1-2, Meet people of color there anticipating the Union Victory, and 2) Freedom on the Horizon, Saturday evening 6:30-8:00 Nastassia Parker-Gross (demonstrator at Banneker Colonial events) debuts her one-woman show about Oney Judge, born at Mount Vernon, who escaped here slavery in 1796.
Banjo festival this coming Sunday may interest folks who enjoyed the Colonial Market Fair music last weekend.
Jubilee Voices
Jubilee Voices - What a great show!
JOSIAH Documentary Screening https://josiahhenson.com/documentary/ When: Thursday, May 31, 2018, 6 pm (doors open at 5:30 pm) Where: Historical Society of Baltimore County, 9811 Van Buren Lane, Cockeysville, Md. 21030 Who was Josiah Henson? How has history forgotten this man? Josiah Henson, born in Maryland, spent 41 years as a slave. He was a dynamic man with unyielding principles who overcame incredible odds to escape with his family to Canada. His story inspired the main character in Harriet Beecher Stowe’s 1852 novel, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, a book that made people realize the brutal reality of slavery and fanned the flames of the Civil War. Yet despite his notable achievements and contribution to abolition, Henson’s story has been largely lost to history. Until now. Including interviews with leading experts and Henson descendants, JOSIAH is a 39-minute documentary that traces Josiah Henson’s harrowing journey from slavery in Maryland and Kentucky to freedom in Canada. Watch the trailer at www.josiahhenson.com, and please join us for a local screening of JOSIAH, where you’ll get to know more about this exceptional man and what he stood for. Light refreshments will be served. Free parking on site. Questions? Contact the Historical Society at 410-666-1878 / [email protected].