Button Farm Living History Center

Button Farm Living History Center The historic Button Farm, home to the Menare Foundation, is Maryland’s only living history center depicting 19th century slave plantation life.
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Tiny tobacco...tobacco seeds are like grains of sand.  If you look closely you can see them on top of the soil.  The eme...
04/08/2019

Tiny tobacco...tobacco seeds are like grains of sand. If you look closely you can see them on top of the soil. The emerging plants aren’t much bigger...all the more amazing when you think they can eventually grow up to six feet tall!

A few things  pigs are thankful for...roasted pumpkin, a warm pile of straw in the barn and that they are not turkeys.  ...
11/22/2018

A few things pigs are thankful for...roasted pumpkin, a warm pile of straw in the barn and that they are not turkeys. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

We had a great day on Sunday for our Emancipation Day event which marks the end of our public events at the farm for thi...
11/06/2018

We had a great day on Sunday for our Emancipation Day event which marks the end of our public events at the farm for this year. Thanks to everyone who came out to visit! Enjoy the rest of the season 🍂🍁

MORE (Mid-Atlantic Off-Road Enthusiasts) kick off their annual Halloween Thursday night ride at Button Farm.  For info o...
10/26/2018

MORE (Mid-Atlantic Off-Road Enthusiasts) kick off their annual Halloween Thursday night ride at Button Farm. For info on their non-profit, go to www.more-mtb.org.

Discovery Impact DayThanks to the volunteers from the Discovery Channel who came out to Button Farm on Friday, September...
09/26/2018

Discovery Impact Day
Thanks to the volunteers from the Discovery Channel who came out to Button Farm on Friday, September 21 for the annual Impact Day. They did an amazing job, removing three truck loads of weeds and rebuilding old raised beds.

Bees have come to Button Farm!This colony of bees had made their home in the wall of the community center at the Warren ...
09/22/2018

Bees have come to Button Farm!
This colony of bees had made their home in the wall of the community center at the Warren Historic Site, which was scheduled to be dismantled as part of a larger restoration project. Jim Fraser and his sons from the Maryland Honey Company removed the colony, nursed it back to health and donated the hive body. Now the bees have a new home at another historic site...Button Farm.

Wow, yesterday's deluge nearly caused our rain gauge to overflow!  Just shy of five inches!
07/22/2018

Wow, yesterday's deluge nearly caused our rain gauge to overflow! Just shy of five inches!

Scenes from last weekend's Heritage Days event at Button Farm.  Thanks to Pastor Isler who grilled up lunch for visitors...
06/26/2018

Scenes from last weekend's Heritage Days event at Button Farm. Thanks to Pastor Isler who grilled up lunch for visitors on Saturday, our friends at "Coming to the Table" who conducted a "Circle Process" and Anne Bouie who celebrated a "Ceremony for the Ancestors" at our slave cemetery.

06/24/2018

Wake up sleepyheads. The farm is slowly coming to life this fine Sunday morning. Today is our second day of Heritage Day Weekend. Come out from Noon to 4pm to tour the farm. Try your hand at the 2-person sawing demo. Grind corn to feed the animals. Or bring a blanket and a picnic basket and relax in the shade for a while. Self-guided "analogue" mode today. See ya'll down on the farm!

06/23/2018

Hey folks. The rain ended here overnight! Sun forecast for later this morning. We are on for a terrific Heritage Days Weekend. If you have cabin fever and want to get out of your cave, come on over to the farm from 12-4pm. We FREE have food, tours, and hands-on history. See you on the farm! 🕛😆🐖🍔☀️👨‍🌾👨‍👩‍👧‍👦🕓

Button Farm is part of Heritage Days weekend.  For details on events on the farm and for information on all the other si...
06/23/2018

Button Farm is part of Heritage Days weekend. For details on events on the farm and for information on all the other sites throughout the county that are part of this annual event, visit our web page at www.buttonfarm.org.

A new generation of our heritage breed Cotton Patch Geese hatched out a few days ago--six in total (two are under the go...
06/06/2018

A new generation of our heritage breed Cotton Patch Geese hatched out a few days ago--six in total (two are under the goose in the photo), but there's a second nest, so there might be more on the way!

06/01/2018

Hello all. Any good pics of tonight's storm?

First wave of Bluebirds hatched and growing fast!
05/23/2018

First wave of Bluebirds hatched and growing fast!

It's not raining until later today, Germantown flea market is on.  Stop by and visit and pick up basil, tomatoes, pepper...
05/05/2018

It's not raining until later today, Germantown flea market is on. Stop by and visit and pick up basil, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and cotton (cool and overcast with rain on the way...perfect time to transplant.

Another sign that Spring is here...Bluebird eggs in a nest box.  Four of the nest boxes currently have eggs!  Volunteers...
04/30/2018

Another sign that Spring is here...Bluebird eggs in a nest box. Four of the nest boxes currently have eggs! Volunteers from the Maryland Bluebird Society built and monitor the nest boxes at Button Farm.

Cardinal thinks:  "But the calendar says it's Spring."
03/21/2018

Cardinal thinks: "But the calendar says it's Spring."

Cold and snow got you down?  Cheer up by planning your summer garden.  Close your eyes and imagine the smell of fresh pi...
03/20/2018
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Cold and snow got you down? Cheer up by planning your summer garden. Close your eyes and imagine the smell of fresh picked basil or the juicy ripeness of an heirloom tomato. Then start to make those dreams come true. Visit our website buttonfarm.org and check out our plant sale for details! Plants will be ready for pick up in early May, just in time to get your summer garden going.

The historic Button Farm, home to the Menare Foundation, is Maryland’s only living history center depicting 19th century slave plantation life and the heroic story of the Underground Railroad through our unique living history experiences. Situated on 40-acres inside of Seneca Creek State Park in G...

Bonus points for anyone who can find Button Farm's Cara Light in this photo from MLK volunteer day!
01/15/2018

Bonus points for anyone who can find Button Farm's Cara Light in this photo from MLK volunteer day!

Super turn out at the MLK volunteer day in Rockville.  Volunteers at the Menare activity table helped put together promo...
01/15/2018

Super turn out at the MLK volunteer day in Rockville. Volunteers at the Menare activity table helped put together promotional materials for 2018. Thanks to all who helped out!

In the midst of this deep freeze, the arrival of our first shipments of garden seeds is a reminder that winter doesn't l...
01/02/2018

In the midst of this deep freeze, the arrival of our first shipments of garden seeds is a reminder that winter doesn't last forever.

Happy New Year everyone!

The geese love a good snow day, but the chickens prefer hanging out in their eggloo.
12/09/2017

The geese love a good snow day, but the chickens prefer hanging out in their eggloo.

Beautiful day at the farm with our first snow of the season!
12/09/2017

Beautiful day at the farm with our first snow of the season!

Please Support Us On Giving Tuesday!Among the greatest gifts that you can share with others during this season of giving...
11/28/2017
Donate Now

Please Support Us On Giving Tuesday!

Among the greatest gifts that you can share with others during this season of giving, is the gift of community. So today, on #GivingTuesday, please consider The Menare Foundation, Inc. and our ongoing community-based projects.

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

In this season of thanks, The Button Farm Living History Center, home to The Menare Foundation, would like to thank everyone who supported us this year.

The Button Farm Living History Center is our community farm set on 40 acres in Germantown, MD, depicting 1850s plantation life through our unique hands-on history experiences.

Whether you attended a program, came out for an open house event or offered your services as a volunteer, your support has helped us continue to grow as a destination for history, community and hope!

Many Hands Make Magic!

Each year Button Farm is host to hundreds of volunteer helpers, whether students, the faith community, corporate volunteers, Eagle Scouts or weekend warriors. Volunteers help us to run the farm, improve and beautify the site, and staff big events such as Heritage Days and Emancipation Day celebrations.

DONATE TODAY!
Thank you for your support of our project preserving the legacy of the Underground Railroad. Your donation goes to help fund the restoration of the farm, develop and launch educational programs, expand our Museum Garden and Heritage Breeds animal projects, and most of all it helps us to bring history to life!

Menare is a 501c3 nonprofit. A donation of any amount is truly valued. Just click the link below to reach the Donate Page on our website and then click the "Donate" button at the bottom of the page.

http://buttonfarm.org/donate

The Menare Foundation
16820 Black Rock Road
Germantown MD 20874

Thank you for visiting the Button Farm Living History Center. We hope that your experience was an enjoyable one. Our operations rely upon your continuing visitation and generous support. While we open our site without entry fees, we welcome contributions to our donation boxes. All other contribution...

Short days, long shadows.
11/21/2017

Short days, long shadows.

And they’re off! EX2 10K runners starting their race on the beautiful Fall morning! We will be open today from noon-4 ...
11/04/2017

And they’re off! EX2 10K runners starting their race on the beautiful Fall morning! We will be open today from noon-4 pm for self-guided tours! You can run the trails too!

11/04/2017

JUST ANNOUNCED
SPECIAL EMANCIPATION SUPPER

Following Emancipation Day Celebration
At Button Farm Living History Center
Sunday 11/05/2017
4PM-6PM


Food Provided by Ben Ritter, Chef/owner, Watershed Cafe, Poolesville MD

Recipes inspired by the "African American Heritage Cookbook"
Vegetables and herbs from Button Farm & "Chocolates and Tomatoes" farm, Poolesville
Eggs from "Kenzie's Koop", Poolesville

Supper: 4:00 - 6:00 pm
3 Courses with optional wine pairings from Rockland's Farm
$40 per person, $25 for wine pairing
All dishes are vegetarian, vegan options are available.
Peanut Soup -
with sunchoke/sorrel slaw, sweet potato/black bean hash in corn tortillas
Rocklands Farm 2016 "White Oak", 73% Vidal Blanc, 27% Chardonnay
Biscuits and "Gravy" -
Buttermilk biscuit, Mushroom ragout with swiss chard and cherry tomatoes, smoke-poached egg
Rocklands Farm 2016 "Farmhouse", Chambourcin
Gingerbread with Apples and Molasses Whipped Cream
Mint and Chamomille tea with local honey
Emancipation Day Chef
BEN RITTER

11/04/2017

BUTTON FARM LIVING HISTORY CENTER
EMANCIPATION DAY 2017
Sunday November 5
12:00-4:00
ADMISSION: FREE

EVENING FIELD TO FORK SUPPER
4:00-6:00
$45.00

On November 1, 1864 the state of Maryland abolished slavery through a change to its constitution. Join us at Button Farm for a celebration of Maryland Emancipation Day.

Tour the farm, visit with our barnyard friends and help us to inaugurate our newly renovated fire circle with a toasty bonfire.

THROUGHOUT THE DAY
12:00-4:00

HANDS ON HISTORY ACTIVITIES
Plantation tools & chores, freedom passes, Henry Brown's "Freedom Box"

SELF-GUIDED TOUR OF GARDEN & ANIMALS
Heirloom vegetables, Guinea Hogs, Chickens and Cotton Patch Geese!

CHEF BEN COOKING DEMONSTRATION
FREE tasting : 12:00 - 3:00 pm.
Corn Fritters- weet corn, local eggs, crackers, fish pepper
Warm Field Pea Salad with Vinaigrette - Black eyed peas, split peas, charred tomatillos, bell peppers and herbs, cider vinaigrette

SCHEDULED EVENTS

EMANCIPATION STORY & ILLUMINATION
"THE SWEET TASTE OF FREEDOM"
2:00-2:30
Historian Anthony Cohen tells the story of Maryland Emancipation. Followed by an illumination ceremony around the newly restored fire circle!

CEMETERY WALK
2:30-3:30
At 3PM we will walk to the Button Farm cemetery, and gather amongst the headstones of this unmarked enslaved burial ground.

SPECIAL EVENING SUPPER
4:00-6:00
Stay on after the day's event for a special 3-course meal with Ben Ritter. Ingredients selected from Button Farm and other local producers. See menu and prices below!

Button Farm celebrates Emancipation Day 2017!  Chef Ben Ritter of the Watershed Cafe will demonstrate recipes from Herit...
11/03/2017

Button Farm celebrates Emancipation Day 2017! Chef Ben Ritter of the Watershed Cafe will demonstrate recipes from Heritage Montgomery's new African-American cookbook.

Plus tours, activities and a toasty bonfire in our newly renovated fire circle.

Join us Sunday, November 5 from Noon until 4 o'clock for our final event of the year.

The pigs are hanging out and enjoying the sun today! You are welcome to come out between noon-4:00 to do the same during...
10/28/2017

The pigs are hanging out and enjoying the sun today! You are welcome to come out between noon-4:00 to do the same during our Open House! Or if you want to help us build a new fire circle you are welcome to help during the same times!

MORE trail group heads out from Button Farm for night ride on the trails.
10/26/2017

MORE trail group heads out from Button Farm for night ride on the trails.

Yesterday's winds made us feel like we were under attack, especially when the walnuts hit the metal roof of our garage a...
09/29/2017

Yesterday's winds made us feel like we were under attack, especially when the walnuts hit the metal roof of our garage and shed.

This is just a fraction of what we're removing from the garden and yard today.

(And no, we're not going to harvest the walnuts...anyone who has gone through the work of processing Black Walnuts will understand why!)

A Celebration of Harriet TubmanJoin us on Sunday, September 17 from Noon to 4:00 PM at the Button Farm Living History Ce...
09/06/2017

A Celebration of Harriet Tubman

Join us on Sunday, September 17 from Noon to 4:00 PM at the Button Farm Living History Center to remember the remarkable life of Harriet Tubman. The event is free and open to the public.

Born into slavery on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, Tubman not only escaped to freedom on the Underground Railroad, she risked that freedom repeatedly by returning to Maryland to lead others out of bondage.

Our day of celebration includes several screenings of Carry Me Home, a short 20-minute film by Joshua Henry that recounts Tubman’s final passage on the Underground Railroad. Tony Cohen, historian of the Underground Railroad, will be on hand to answer questions about Tubman and the film.

Ranger Angie Crenshaw, the Assistant Manager of the new Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park, will talk about Maryland’s newest state park. Additional activities include a program
Crenshaw created called “Games of Enslaved Children.” Guests can create their own pieces of art to remember the day. There will also be a scavenger hunt and self-guided tours of the Button Farm.

Button Farm Living History Center is located at 16820 Black Rock Road in Germantown, Maryland. The farm is operated by the Menare Foundation. For more information, visit us at buttonfarm.org.

08/26/2017

Button Farm Closed

Saturday August 26

Scenes from an Eclipse PartyThanks to all who came to Button Farm for the "Just Look Up" Eclipse event.
08/22/2017

Scenes from an Eclipse Party

Thanks to all who came to Button Farm for the "Just Look Up" Eclipse event.

We look forward to seeing everyone tomorrow at our Solar Eclipse Party from 1:00 pm-3:00 pm. There is no registration fo...
08/21/2017
Lunt Solar Safety - Lunt Solar Systems

We look forward to seeing everyone tomorrow at our Solar Eclipse Party from 1:00 pm-3:00 pm.

There is no registration for this free event.

There have been a lot of reports in the news regarding glasses that are not safe for solar viewing. The glasses we purchased are from a company called LUNT Solar systems. Here is a link to their solar safety information (https://luntsolarsystems.com/lunt-solar-safety/). We have tested the glasses and they are completely safe.

We have many people coming out for the event, but we have a limited supply of glasses. We may ask groups to share. If you would like to get your own pair to bring to the party, you are welcome to! You may be able to get some from your local public library or university. We will also have a telescope fitted with a solar filter for additional viewing opportunities.

We have picnic tables and benches for seating, but if you would be more comfortable in a chair of your own, feel free to bring one with you.
Light refreshments will be served.

When Lunt Solar started making solar telescopes and filters, the subject of eye safety was at the forefront of design. Our designs were approved by a senior ophthalmologist professor at a leading University of Ophthalmology in Canada. A safety criteria was determined for both UV and IR transmission....

"Life is What Happens While You're Making Other Plans"That sums up life at Button Farm.  Early afternoon chores got set ...
08/19/2017

"Life is What Happens While You're Making Other Plans"

That sums up life at Button Farm. Early afternoon chores got set aside yesterday when a young fox got tangled up in trellis netting in the shed. It was not happy, but we were able to cut it free.

08/14/2017

Our regularly schedule Sunday Fun Day (August 20) is being replaced by a Monday "Sun" Day event. Come experience a rare SOLAR ECLIPSE from the Button Farm Living History Center. Staff member Cara Light (that's really her name) will lead this amazing sun gazing event. A telescope with safe sun gazing filter will be on hand and Cara will lead the discussion. Guests will receive solar glasses for safe sun gazing to view the sun on your own. Don't blink or you'll miss it!

Farm Hours: 1PM to 3PM
Tour begins: Eclipse projected to begin at 1:45
Admission: FREE!

08/11/2017

Join Button Farm's Cara Light on Saturday August 12 at 1 o'clock for a free guided walking tour featuring the farm's heritage breed animals.

07/22/2017

Yard Sale Revision

We're taking advantage of the cooler (okay, just less hot) morning temperature. Sunday yard sale will begin at 9 AM and last until 1 PM.

07/19/2017

Hot Deals for a Hot Weekend

Button Farm is having a yard sale this weekend!

Come by Saturday and Sunday, noon to four to shop for antiques, furniture, household items, books, music, farm equipment and more under the shade of our pavilion.

Spread the word to help us make this yard sale a success. All proceeds go to help fund the operation of the farm.

We should have named her Houdini Dora relaxes in her mud hole after a night of unknown escapades in the woods.  We've lo...
07/18/2017

We should have named her Houdini

Dora relaxes in her mud hole after a night of unknown escapades in the woods. We've lost track of how many escapes she has master minded, but she always comes back for breakfast.

They grow up so fast!  Fiona and Debbie, born in mid-May, have gone from goslings to geese.
07/11/2017

They grow up so fast! Fiona and Debbie, born in mid-May, have gone from goslings to geese.

's cover photo
09/06/2016

's cover photo

Address

16820 Black Rock Road
Germantown, MD
20874

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