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Ellicott City historian Charlotte Holland remembered for love of history and music | MOSTLY MAIN

The historic district lost one of its staunchest supporters with the death of Charlotte Holland on Dec. 29 after a long illness. She was a well-known, industrious and enthusiastic volunteer, and a good friend of mine.

After Charlotte retired from Maryland state government in 1995, she had the time to pursue her love of music with classes and frequent trips to the symphony, and her love of local history by participating in a variety of projects with Historic Ellicott City Inc. Her love of history had been nurtured by her mother, Celia Holland, who was one of the women of the year selected by the Howard County Historical Society in 2020.

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Decades before, Celia had written a definitive compilation of the prime historic sites in Ellicott City, a popular book that quickly sold out and went out of print. In 2003, Historic Ellicott City Inc. published an update to that book, with new information about these key sites in the Ellicott City area. I was privileged to co-author the update with Charlotte, an endeavor that took three years, as we revisited every building in the book and spoke with the current owners. Charlotte went on to be president of the organization, and also was very active in their fundraiser show houses. She will be missed.

Charlotte Holland loved music and history.
Charlotte Holland loved music and history. (Courtesy photo / HANDOUT)

Howard County Restaurant Weeks and Craft Beverages continue through Jan. 31. Participating restaurants have special menus and beverages available for both dining in and carryout. The Ellicott City restaurants taking part in this promotion are Alexandra’s at Turf Valley, Beef Brothers and the White Oak Tavern.

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On the national register of historic properties, MacAlpine Manor was built in 1868 and presides majestically over its neighbors on MacAlpine Road. It was the second fundraiser decorator show house offered by Historic Ellicott City Inc. in 1985. I visited the current owners not long after they moved in and was very impressed by their commitment to maintain and enhance this lovely property. The 6,000-square-foot home, on an acre of ground, is currently for sale, and the owners have made good on their promise to take good care of it. It is warm and welcoming, imposing but not intimidating.

I love the Howard County Library System. Even in these difficult times, it has found a way to let us safely borrow books, with contact-less pickup. I do miss interacting with the knowledgeable and friendly staff at the Miller Branch library and I look forward to the resumption of afternoon movies and other events, but I’m grateful to be able to keep reading lots of books.

I was very pleased that its stellar work has again been recognized by the Library Journal as a five-star library. This honor is achieved by less than 1% of the libraries in the country, and no other library in Maryland has been so recognized. Congratulations to all of the hard working library staff!

Its 24th annual fundraiser, Evening in the Stacks, is going virtual this year, with an Italian theme on Feb. 24 from 7 to 9 p.m. The event features several authors, a cooking demonstration and virtual truffle hunting in Tuscany. Proceeds will provide activity boxes for children and laptops for people in need. Go to hclibrary.org for ticket information.

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Lutheran Village at Miller’s Grant, on Frederick Road in Ellicott City, is one of two Lutheran Social Ministries of Maryland communities that have been recognized as a Best Nursing Home for short-term rehabilitation by U.S. News and World Report. U.S. News gives the designation of Best Nursing Home to homes that satisfy its assessment of appropriate use of key services and consistent quality performance.

Finally, I knew it was time to take the stockings off the mantle and pack away my extensive Santa collection when I saw the Valentine’s Day candy in the grocery store. But heck, that was the first week of January, and we were still enjoying our decorations, even if there was no one else to see them.

Now that the New Year’s ham is history (two people and a 9-pound ham, what can I say?), I’m ready for the Super Bowl and Valentine’s Day.

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