Objects, Photos From Baltimore Uprising 2015 Featured In New Maryland Historical Society Exhibit

Objects, Photos From Baltimore Uprising 2015 Featured In New Maryland Historical Society Exhibit

Exhibit highlights recently donated objects spanning 400 years

Contact: Laura Rodini lrodini@mdhs.org 410-685-3750 Ext. 322 

"Rallies for Peace," by James Singewald, taken on 4/28/2015, the day after the riot. The majority of the images are taken in the vicinity of Penn-North, Sandtown-Winchester, and Upton
BALTIMORE, June 23, 2016 - The Maryland Historical Society's newest exhibit, What & Why: Collecting at the Maryland Historical Society, features items spanning four centuries of donations to the Maryland Historical Society, including objects and a video installation of images from the Preserve the Baltimore Uprising project that documented the unrest and cleanup efforts following the death of Freddie Gray in 2015. What & Why: Collecting at the Maryland Historical Society opens June 29, 2016 and will run through June 30, 2017.
Objects include melted aluminum from a burnt bus engine as well as pieces of burnt bricks collected at the site of a fire at an unfinished senior center construction site at the corner of North Chester Street and East Lanvale Street, Baltimore.

"We have an obligation to record all aspects of Maryland's diverse history, not only its distant past but its current events as well," says Maryland Historical Society President and CEO Mark B. Letzer, "This material will be a seminal contribution to the nationally important collections of the Maryland Historical Society."

About the Exhibition
Touring the Maryland Historical Society's galleries, visitors discover a broad range of objects from paintings to textiles, and, oftentimes the stories behind the items donated are touching and important to the object's history. "This exhibition explores not only what MdHS has been collecting for the past five years, but the stories behind why donors share their possessions with us," says Chief Curator Alexandra Deutsch. "The range of what we collect is very broad - from 18th century portraits to objects from the Baltimore Uprising of 2015 - because we strive to represent the fullest possible picture of Maryland's history from first settlement to the present. Donors are motivated by many reasons when they give an object or objects to the museum and each donor has a special story to tell."
James Singewald, one of the photographers who donated photos to the Preserve the Baltimore Uprising project, says, "So many images were created during that period of unrest and in the months leading up to it, by people of all different backgrounds and perspectives, both amateur and professional. Just about everyone has a camera these days, but what do you do with all those images? The Uprising Archive allows anyone who has something to share from that tumultuous and emotional time to do so and have it available for the public to see and share."
About the Preserve the Baltimore Uprising 2015 Project
The Maryland Historical Society issued a call for images in early May, 2015. More than 12,000 images were submitted, including photographs taken from cell phones and cameras, audio segments, oral histories, and more than 2,000 intergovernmental emails surrounding the unrest that were released by Baltimore City. The images depict activists, demonstrations, the presence of the National Guard, police officers, military hardware, and more.
The effort behind the creation of the baltimoreuprising2015.org website, called Preserve the Baltimore Uprising, is a joint effort by Maryland Historical Society, faculty from University of Baltimore, University of Maryland Baltimore County, Coppin State University, Morgan State University, MICA, Johns Hopkins University, and staff from the Maryland State Archives to preserve and make accessible original content that was captured and created by individual community members, grassroots organizations, and witnesses to the protests that followed the death of Freddie Gray on April 19, 2015. Submissions are still being received.
With many people plugged into the instant technologies of social media and cell phone photography, more people than ever before could participate in recording and preserving history as it unfolded. "We sensed the importance of what's going on and sensed that people would study this event for years to come," says Digital Projects Coordinator Joe Tropea.
If you are interested in joining our efforts to Preserve the Baltimore Uprising and have questions about how you can join in, please contact Joe Tropea at the Maryland Historical Society by email at remembrance@mdhs.org.
About The Maryland Historical Society
Founded in 1844, The Maryland Historical Society Museum and Library occupies an entire city block in the Mount Vernon district of Baltimore. The society's mission is to "collect, preserve, and interpret the objects and materials that reflect Maryland's diverse cultural heritage." The Society is home to the original manuscript of the Star-Spangled Banner and publishes a quarterly titled "Maryland Historical Magazine." Visit www.mdhs.org.
For more details, contact Marketing Director Laura Rodini at lrodini@mdhs.org or by phone: 410-685-3750 ext. 322.