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Preserving, protecting, and promoting Montgomery County’s rich architectural heritage and historic landscapes

B&O Station
Bowman, Upton House 2010 Trefethian
Silver Spring Public Library
Zachariah Waters Cemetery Complete
B&O Station
Bowman, Upton House 2010 Trefethian
Silver Spring Public Library
Zachariah Waters Cemetery Complete
HAPPENING HERE IN MONTGOMERY COUNTY

Events

Save the Date

May 9 Historic Medley District’s 50th Anniversary Celebration
May 11 Woodlawn Manor Cultural Park’s Historic Preservation Day
May 17 Peerless Rockville’s 50th Anniversary Celebration
June 1 June Open House at the B&O Station
June 1&9 Hungerford Resolves 250th Anniversary
June 8 MPI Annual Meeting and Volunteer Appreciation
June 9 Historic Takoma House and Garden Tour
June 29&30 Montgomery County Heritage Days everywhere!

 

Historic Takoma’s Reading Room Welcomes Visitors

Historic Takoma is opening its Reading Room from 1 PM – 4 PM on the first and third Sundays of each month. The Reading Room contains Historic Takoma’s reference collections and archives. Learn more.

National Capital Trolley Museum Seeks Executive Director

The museum seeks an experienced and dynamic Executive Director to continue its mission as a cultural and community leader.  Download the job description.

The Campaign for Historic Trades: Recruitment Opportunity

The Traditional Trades Advancement Program (TTAP) is accepting applications. This 26-week program is for young adults interested in gaining hands-on preservation experience. Learn more.

Heritage Montgomery Releases New Transportation Brochure

This large, fold-out brochure documents the extensive history of transportation within the county. Learn more about “Rivers, Roads & Rails: Transportation in Montgomery County.”

The Former Flower Theatre’s Facade Restoration Is Complete

MPI congratulates the Silver Spring nonprofit MHP for restoring the facade features, which hearken back to the Theatre’s original condition when it opened in 1950. Learn more.

Local Preservation Victories

Peerless Rockville and Bethesda Historical Society celebrate big wins. Learn more about their achievements.

35th Historic Preservation Awards Starred Top-Notch Honorees and Eloquent Presenters

Recognizing extraordinary citizens who conducted excellent projects and programs, an enthusiastic audience celebrated recent preservation triumphs on October 14 in Gaithersburg. Six Montgomery County individuals and groups were honored this year with presentations by public officials, historians, and admirers.

The Awards continued MPI’s tradition of combining friendliness and good food with recognition of excellent projects and programs. Public officials, local historians, and others familiar with each awardee presented heartfelt descriptions in person and on video. In the words of one attendee, “The Awardees were so deserving…. All went seamlessly without a hint of all the work that went into it.” All gathered at historic Grace UM Church were impressed with the great preservation work occurring in Montgomery County.

View more information on the 2022 Award Winners.

Elrich with 2022 Awardees
County Executive Marc Elrich with 2022 Awardees

MPI’s 36th Awards Ceremony will be held in Fall 2025. Nominations will be accepted until Spring 2025. Find out more about MPI’s Preservation Awards.

Fred Schirrmacher, Builder of Model Railroad Display

Fred Schirmmacher
Credit: Leah L. Jones, Gazette Photographer

“Mr. Fred [Schirrmacher] says, ‘It’s designed to make children smile; that’s what it’s for.’ A model railroad display constructed by the former Silver Spring Model Railroad Society made its grand debut returning in 2011 to its hometown roughly 20 years after its creation. Display features miniature people, tunnels, bridges, mountains, a haunted house, and tiny trains that chug around the clover-loop track. Model was built originally for a 1989 holiday showcase at National Geographic’s Exhibitors’ Hall, then resided at the Gaithersburg Community Museum for 17 years, then headed on to our SS B&O RR Station!”
Article by Jeannete Der Bedrosian, Gazette Staff Reporter, March 2011

Fred Schirmmacher at the B&O Station
Credit: John Sery

In fond memory of Fred Schirrmacher 1941 – 2023

Read his obituary.

Mary Reardon, Historic Preservation and Social Justice Advocate

Credit: Alan Bowser

MPI is sad to report the passing of Mary Reardon on July 16.  After moving to Silver Spring in the early 1980s and until her untimely death, Mary dedicated her considerable talents and passion to making the world a better place. She advocated for the respect of history, excellence in architecture, sensible development, affordable housing, and fairness to all.

A number of downtown Silver Spring treasures are still standing due to Mary’s work: Canada Dry Building, Falkland Apartments, Montgomery Arms, and Hecht’s Building. Most recently, she was working with others to preserve Weller’s Dry Cleaning building and the historic Jesup Blair mansion and park.

Mary Reardon was adventurous, thoughtful, intelligent, thorough, kind, and fun to be with. From every aspect of her life Mary left friends and admirers, many of whom were honored to connect with and visit her in her final months. Mary was a founding member and Preservation Chair of Silver Spring Historical Society, and she played a strong role as Vice President of MPI.  Read her complete obituary.

Train Excursion Celebrated the 150th anniversary of The Met

Thanks to excursion riders — all 712 of you!  We heard how much you enjoyed the Memorial Day train ride from Silver Spring to Brunswick on The Met branch of the B&O Railroad.

“Wow.  Simply Wow. What a wonderful event! Our grandkids had a blast. How fun :-)”

It was a unique and wonderful trip!”

“I had a great time and it looked like everyone else did too!  I especially want to know how you made the rain stay away until after the event : )    Thank you for putting together such a cool thing for the County!”

What happens when hundreds of rail fans — from young kids to adults young at heart — board a special MARC train at six historic rail stops in Montgomery County for a daytime excursion?  All enjoyed a memorable, smoothly engineered day in the Maryland countryside, that in addition to beautiful scenery included some narrated history and geography, plus a visit to the friendly town of Brunswick. Almost half of the riders boarded at Kensington, where townspeople gathered for a full weekend of events. Many learned about the excursion from Susan Soderberg’s excellent talks on The Met’s history, architecture, and engineering feats; others heard about it from friends and neighbors in Silver Spring, Garrett Park, Rockville, Gaithersburg, Germantown, and Dickerson.  All marveled at The Met line’s surviving historic stations and enjoyed their time in Brunswick. They returned home with a souvenir Excursion Guide and button, Heritage Days flyer, information from Operation Lifesaver, and wonderful memories. A paper copy of the Excursion Guide, which describes all of the stops in Montgomery County, is available for free at the Silver Spring station.

Historic Preservation in Montgomery County

Open House program

Open House at the Station

Join us for the Silver Spring B&O Railroad Station Open Houses, the first Saturday of each month from 10 am – 2 pm. Admission is free. Enjoy real train spotting, toy train play set, permanent model train display, kid’s toy engine to ride, programs and pop-up displays for adults, and videos, including “Next Stop Silver Spring.” We continue to prioritize the health and safety of our visitors, volunteers, and guests with social distancing and masking policies that follow CDC and Montgomery County rules.

Silver_Spring_Baltimore_&_Ohio_Railroad_Station-2

Silver Spring B&O Station

The historic train station is a beloved historic landmark and a community resource. After a disastrous car accident that severely damaged the station’s main facade in 1997, MPI rescued the station and, with assistance from private and public sources, restored it to its 1945 appearance. Today this museum of 20th century rail history regularly welcomes visitors, meetings, celebrations, and the general public. The station is listed in the National Register of Historic Places, designated on the Montgomery County Master Plan for Historic Preservation, and protected by an easement held by the Maryland Historical Trust. Learn more about station history, open houses, and rentals.

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Getting Started?

New to historic preservation or how it works in Montgomery County? Visiting and learning about Montgomery County’s bountiful historic sites is a great way to start. Getting involved with any of the groups that share your interest in local historic places is the next step. Do you prefer Victorian homes, African American history, former schoolhouses, public buildings, Modernist architecture, rural cemeteries, or transportation history? Montgomery County has them all! You can sample local history at Montgomery County Heritage Days. Check out individual groups and historic sites on our Resources section.

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