Copyright (C) 2015 Preservation Howard County
Howard County's Top Ten Endangered Sites, 2003
Blandair is an eighteenth century farm located on approximately 300 acres in the heart of Columbia. The farm is bisected by Route 175.
The main house is a fine brick mansion with many unique architectural characteristics including decorative brickwork, fine marble fireplaces, and decorative mouldings.
In addition to the main house, Blandair has many fine outbuildings, including two barns, a stone home that may predate the main house, a log cabin, and a stone dairy.
In 1987, Celia M. Holland called Blandair "one of the county's most handsome brick houses" in her book, Old Homes and Families of Howard County, Maryland. Holland also quotes 1798 tax records as reporting:
"One brick dwelling 46 x 36 two stories, one olde stone house, one olde stone kitchen, one brick smokehouse, one brick dairy."
The buildings continue to deteriorate and are in critical need of basic repairs, stabilization and restoration.
A select committee is working with the Department of Recreation and Parks to develop recommendations for the use of the property, the main house and the outbuildings. PHC supports the preservation of these buildings as they offer a rare opportunity to preserve a specific time in the agricultural history and heritage of Howard County.
Elk Ridge Assembly Room
The Elk Ridge Assembly Room was proposed by Judge Dobin in 1869 as a unique place to bring back together the neighbors of Lawyers Hill divided by the Civil War. The building was constructed in 1871 by its residents on land given by Judge Dobin.
The building is simple in design to serve the purpose of neighborhood gatherings and theatrical presentations.
While time has not deteriorated its original purpose, time has taken its toll on the building.
PHC is working with the residents of the Lawyers Hill Historic District, who are faced with the daunting task of finding funds to maintain and preserve this historic meeting place.
The Town of Lisbon
The Town of Lisbon, located on the historic "National Road," was designed and built by Caleb Pancoast. His design of the town was such that it can make claim to being the first planned community in Howard County.
Barbara Feaga, in her book Howard's Roads to the Past, indicates that there were other Howard County firsts for the town that all those traveling west must pass through: the first Presbyterian Church, the first high school, and the first non-teaching principal.
PHC feels that selecting this historic area and the available initiatives in preserving National Road communities under heritage tourism programs could serve as a catalyst for the continued revitalization of the town and influence the appropriate commercialization favored by the community.
Melvin Howard Log Cabin
This 1800's log cabin is found on the edge of Dorsey Mill Road. It is noted on the 1860 Martenet Map and the 1977 Historic Sites Inventory as an early machine shop.
PHC is encouraging its owners' preservation of one of the few remaining log structures in Howard County.
Mount Joy/Santa is suspected to have existed as a dependency of "Chews Resolution Manor" as early as 1695. The property is planned for subdivision construction by Winchester Homes. The site plan has been designed so as to maintain the main house and two outbuildings: a stone summer kitchen/slave quarters and a log building.
PHC encourages the opportunity for an adaptive reuse of the main house as a social center for the new subdivision and the two outbuildings as educational interpretive sites.
Pfeiffer's Corner Schoolhouse
The Pfeiffer's Corner Schoolhouse was built c.1895 in the then rural area bounded by Ellicott City, Waterloo, and Elkridge.
Read the article, "New Life for an Old School," published in The Baltimore Sun.
The building was threatened by new construction in 1988 and was saved from demolition by a seventh grade class at Hammond Middle School. The class raised $16,500 to move the schoolhouse, temporarily, to a site in Clarksville. In May, 2003, the schoolhouse has finally been moved to Rockburn Heritage Park, where it will be restored and preserved as an interpretive center.
PHC supports the funding effort required to move, restore, and preserve this example of an early Howard County schoolhouse.
The Rockburn Heritage Center
The Rockburn Heritage Center is a Howard County facility in Rockburn Branch Park in Elkridge that is a "work in progress." When completed, it will house three historic structures: Clover Hill, McKenzie's Bank Barn, and Pfeiffer's Corner Schoolhouse:
Clover Hill, a brick and frame house built about 1798, is an example of late eighteenth century construction, with nineteenth century additions. The house is part of a Maryland state "curatorship" program, providing for public/private initiatives to create an adaptive use of an historic building.
PHC supports the efforts of the curator in developing financial and construction plans to restore the exterior and adapt the interior for a restaurant.
McKenzie's Bank Barn
The Aaron McKenzie Bank Barn is a late 1860's log-constructed barn. In 1986, the building was donated to Howard County by Mrs. Jean Hannon, of Ellicott City, and developer Bernard Talle. The building was moved from its original location in Ellicott City to the Rockburn site in 1987. It has recently been moved onto a new foundation.
PHC supports the plans and allocation of funds to provide for the completion of its restoration and its preservation as one of the last bank barns, which were often found throughout Howard County.
St. Louis Cemetery Chapel
The Saint Louis Cemetery Chapel was completed and dedicated in 1856. By 1889, the congregation of the Clarksville area had outgrown this small church, and a larger church was built in Clarksville.
PHC is supporting the work of a parishioners committee in preserving the chapel and in establishing a restoration fund to finance the restoration work.
Troy is located on one of the early 1600's land grants in what was then known as Upper Anne Arundel County and later was lived in by Col. Thomas Dorsey until his death in 1790.
PHC is supportive of and is working with the Department of Recreation and Parks on the plans to restore the house for adaptive use as part of a park to be developed at this site.
Woodlawn Slave Quarters
The Woodlawn Slave Quarters represents one of the few surviving buildings of its type in Howard County. It is believed that the building was an old stone slave quarters located on property adjoining the Woodlawn Manor and probably owned by members of the Dorsey family, who first came to the area in the late 1600's.
PHC is working with the Columbia Association to stabilize and preserve the building as a possible interpretive site.