Thomas Isaac Log Cabin, relocated after 2018 flood, heads back home on Main Street in Ellicott City
By Janet Kusterer
Baltimore Sun Media|
May 06, 2020 at 6:00 AM
On April 20, the county started the job of moving the Thomas Isaac Log Cabin back to its home on Main Street. The cabin had to be moved after the 2018 flood to keep it safe while flood mitigation work was being done on the Tiber. This was a good time to move it back as Parking Lot F had to be closed for the job and right now that didn’t matter.
Speaking of moving buildings, on April 25, 1987, the George Ellicott House was moved from the parking lot of the Wilkens-Rogers Mill across the street to a lot above the flood plain. The house had been compromised by Hurricane Agnes in 1972, which also destroyed the Jonathan Ellicott House next door. Historic Ellicott City Inc. completed the move and the house now stands east of the Trolley Stop and is used for commercial purposes.
Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay came to town just before we all had to stay home. He was here for a week, doing his magic at a variety of venues around town. All of the hard work everyone did is coming to fruition on May 12, when the Fox network is airing a two-hour special about Ellicott City. Must see TV! Don’t miss it.
I am delighted to report that there is a new business on Main Street. The Ellicott Distilling Company has opened at 8090 Main St., where the Margaret Smith Gallery used to be. It is a micro-distillery, dedicated to handcrafting premium spirits right there; you can see the equipment through the front window. The first batch of vodka, gin and lemoncello was released for curbside pickup on April 18. The product can be ordered online. Purchasers will be notified when the next batch will be ready for pickup.
Members of the Colonel Thomas Dorsey chapter of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution in Ellicott City have been hand-sewing masks to donate to local health care facilities. The chapter has so far donated hundreds of masks to Howard County General Hospital and to GilchristCenter Howard County for families and loved ones visiting patients.
The Howard County Historical Society is interested in collecting the stories of people living through the pandemic. It is important to record the experience for future generations to understand. I volunteered to help gather and organize these oral histories so if you would like to share your experiences, please email them to me. My daughter-in-law’s brother, Mike Diederich, has been handwriting a journal on an impressively long scroll. I hope I can get him to share it with me.
Around us, life goes on. My friend Steve Fulton is helping his grandson Julian practice for the choir at Wilde Lake High School. They recorded a stellar version of “Moon River” to share with me when I told them that song was the first my husband and I danced to at our wedding. Very sweet.
Ann Marie DeBiase has been sewing face masks for her husband, Randy, and herself, gardening, doing genealogy research and putting that research into narrative form.
Ellen Bell has been on FaceTime with family in Colorado and challenging husband Fontaine to games of Scrabble.
Allen Dooley can’t go to his gym so he has opened “Allen’s Outdoor Gym” in his backyard. He’s working on legs, shoulders, abs and jump rope. He reports that he doesn’t have to wait in line for the equipment or for anyone to get off the phone.
One thing that I find almost surreal is that my friends Lynn and Nellie Weller, who live in Pennsylvania, find themselves turned away at the border if they want to enter Delaware and Ohio. They have been able to get to Maryland for some shopping but this just seems hard to understand.
Pete White is “sports depressed.” Since his retirement, Pete has been giving tours of Camden Yards, which of course have been suspended. I know that Historical Society Executive Director Shawn Gladden feels his pain. Shawn has been watching an Orioles 2020 “simulation season,” but it’s not the same.
You will understand when I say that one person I really miss is my hairdresser Tonya Wise. She has been enjoying Italian carryout and Zoom visits with her family, She sends out helpful links to customers about where to get hair products and links to home hair-dying tutorials. I’ll wait for her.
The Howard County Public Library website has a “Created While Isolated” page with photos of projects people have done while stuck at home. I liked a plaque featuring a crab made out of beer bottle caps, lovely poetry and a very inventive keepsake recipe album made up of photos of original handwritten recipes.
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A neighbor has their house up for sale now. I was wondering how they managed showings, but when I went online I was able to take a virtual tour of every part of their house. I think this is a wonderful tool even if we weren’t in the middle of a pandemic.
We have a bouquet of Gerbera daisies in a vase on our sun porch. The fronts are bright orange and the backs are bright yellow. They make me smile every time I see them.
Recently, we watched an ancient episode of “Knight Rider” from the ‘80s. It’s a pretty dreadful show, with David Hasselhoff and a talking car, but it brought back sweet memories of my older son, Dave, about 4 years old at the time, knowing that this show signaled party night for him and a treat of cheese curls and orange soda.
I am reading a book right now that I didn’t expect to like but do, and I don’t want it to end. The other night I made a pot of bean soup that I think I ruined with too much rosemary. My sweet husband, Tom, insisted it was fine and said I was being too hard on myself.
I bring all this up just to show that even though we’re stuck inside for far longer than we thought we would be going into this, and even though we had the internet fail, and with it our television and landline phone (since fixed), and even though we’ve had the electrician out twice in the past two weeks (they restored the power to the fridge so we didn’t lose any food) there is still joy to be had.
The weather hasn’t cooperated yet, but my next-door neighbor, Toni Arthur, and I have a plan for the first sunny warm day. We have a row of lilacs running between our houses, so we are going to set up lawn chairs on either side of the flower bed and enjoy a glass of wine and a nice conversation “together.”