Wednesday, December 1, 2010

More Volunteer Opportunities: Going Wild at Tudor Hall

Bird Watchers: We would be delighted to find volunteers with an interest in bird watching to visit the grounds at Tudor Hall on a regular basis throughout the year to identify and record the wild birds they observe and to create a brochure that will tell visitors what birds they might expect to see at Tudor Hall during the four seasons of the year. While some volunteers might be able to only devote a month or two to the project, others might be able to follow through for an entire year. Please let us know if you agree Tudor Hall is “for the birds.”

Wildflower Enthusiasts: Even though the grounds at Tudor Hall, including the spacious lawns, receive maintenance on a regular basis from the Harford County Department of Parks and Recreation, there are a number of wildflowers that grow and blossom from the spring through the fall at Tudor Hall. We would welcome volunteers to identify and record the numerous varieties of wildflowers at Tudor Hall with the eventual goal of creating a brochure that will tell visitors what wildflowers they might see at Tudor Hall during the spring, summer, and autumn months.

Wildlife Observers: Despite the development that has steadily closed in on Tudor Hall, there are still a number of wild animals who frequently visit the property or make it their home. Getting a glimpse of the deer, foxes, snakes, frogs, and other animals that live in the area and recording their presence and activities would require patience and luck on the part of a volunteer.

Entomologists: A wide variety of insects are active at Tudor Hall throughout the year but especially in the spring, summer, and fall. If you have an interest in insects and would like to prepare information to share with visitors about them, please let us know. However, remember that Junius Brutus Booth Sr. declared Tudor Hall a “no kill” zone even when it came to lowly flies.

Tree Huggers: Over the years, Tudor Hall has been known for the wide variety of large, mature trees that have graced the grounds since the house was built. In fact, while the foundation for Tudor Hall was being built, Junius Brutus Booth Sr. insisted that the black locust trees growing near the building site should not be cut down. Not only are we looking for volunteers to identify and inventory the various kinds of trees and shrubs growing at Tudor Hall today, but we would like like to find a volunteer to create a map showing the location of each of the trees. Our eventual goal is to create a brochure or booklet that will tell visitors which trees they will see when they visit Tudor Hall.

Return of the Big Woods: The neighborhood where Tudor Hall is located was once the home of the “Big Woods.” Carefully planned reforestation of some of the grounds at Tudor Hall would not only reduce the expense to Harford County of maintaining the grounds but would be good for the environment. Researching and writing a proposed reforestation plan for Tudor Hall would be a good science project for a high school student or Eagle Scout.

Wildlife and Nature Photographers: It goes without saying that good quality photos of the birds, wildflowers, trees, and seasons at Tudor Hall would be very useful in creating printed materials and slide or PowerPoint presentation

Mapmakers: Many visitors to Tudor Hall ask where the boundaries of the original Booth farm were located. If you have a knack for creating accurate maps and enjoy working with land records from an earlier time, we would certainly welcome your help in creating accurate maps of the Tudor Hall property as it has evolved through the years and as it exists today.

Archeology Students or Professionals: The grounds at Tudor Hall would be an exciting place to conduct archeological explorations. However, careful, thoughtful, and extensive planning is required. Such planning would take a great deal of research and coordination among a variety individuals and organizations all of which would be very time consuming. Volunteers with training and experience in the field of archeology who are willing to make a substantial commitment of time and energy would be most welcome in helping create a viable plan for eventual review and consideration by the Harford County Department of Parks and Recreation.

Contact for more info on any and all volunteer opportunities.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Volunteer Harford Features Junius B. Booth Society and Mike Brown in the Aegis, December 29, 2010, Pg. A3

In September 2010, Volunteer Harford, a division of the Harford County Department of Community Services, chose the Junius B. Booth Society, Inc., as one of 33 local non-profit organizations to highlight in its Volunteer Harford Top 33 Picks program. The result is that the Mike Brown, vice-president of the Junius B. Booth Society and one of our most popular tour guides at Tudor Hall, was featured in a 1/4 page "ad" that appeared in the Aegis on Wednesday, December 29, 2010, on page A3. Congratulations to the Junius B. Booth Society and Mike Brown for being chosen for such an honor!

For a more readable version of the following copy of the ad, left click twice on the image below and then left click again to "magnify" the image even further. Click somewhere outside the borders of the ad to get rid of the blue highlights.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Look For Us on Facebook and Twitter

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Other Ways to Stay Connected to Spirits of Tudor Hall

If you would like to receive an email announcing the 2011 tours and other events at Tudor Hall, please contact us at:, and we'll add you to our emailing list.

You can also receive updates by snail mail by becoming a member of the Junius B. Booth Society, Inc. Members of the society receive a newsletter which is published six times a year and snail mailed to all members. For more information, please visit the society's web site at:

Monday, October 25, 2010

Nora Titone at Tudor Hall, October 22, 2010

Nora Titone visited Tudor Hall to speak about
My Thoughts Be Bloody:
The Bitter Rivalry Between Edwin and John Wilkes Booth
that Led to an American Tragedy.

An estimated 60 people came to Tudor Hall on Friday, October 22, 2010, to hear Nora Titone talk about her new non-fiction book just published by Freedom Press, a division of Simon and Schuster. Requests for reservations were so brisk, Ms. Titone agreed to speak twice (at 5:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.), filling the parlor at Tudor Hall to capacity for both the early and late "show."

Ms. Titone is a dynamic and enthusiastic speaker who kept everyone listening closely as she described the rivalry between Edwin Booth and his younger brother John Wilkes for dominance of the American stage in the mid 1860s and how this rivalry led John Wilkes to upstage Edwin in a very tragic way that changed the course of the nation.

For more information about the book and an interview with Ms. Titone, please scroll down the page.

Nora Titone enjoyed greeting visitors to Tudor Hall and signing copies of her book for them.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Online Review of Nora Titone's Appearance at Tudor Hall

To read a review of Nora Titone's appearance at Tudor Hall on Friday, October 22, 2010, to discuss her new non-fiction book My Thoughts Be Bloody, please click on the link below:

An Interview with Nora Titone About Her New Book My Thoughts Be Bloody

On Friday, October 22, 2010, Nora Titone visited Tudor Hall to talk about her new book My Thoughts Be Bloody: The Bitter Rivalry Between Edwin and John Wilkes Booth That Led to an American Tragedy, In anticipation of Ms. Titone's visit, Dinah Faber asked the following questions, which Ms. Titone graciously answered at some length.

Please see post below for more information about My Thoughts Be Bloody and Ms. Titone's appearance at Tudor Hall.
How did you first become interested in the story of the Booth family?

I first read Edwin Booth’s name in an 1864 diary kept by Fanny Seward, daughter of William H. Seward, Lincoln’s Secretary of State. Edwin came to Washington in 1864 to give command performances of Shakespeare for the President during celebrations of the third anniversary of his inaugural. Lincoln, along with members of his Cabinet and the Diplomatic Corps, attended six gala performances by Edwin Booth; Secretary Seward even hosted a private dinner for the star the night he played “Hamlet.” Fanny recorded every detail of Booth’s visit to her family’s house. The magnitude of Edwin Booth’s fame—and the epic achievements of his actor father, British star Junius Brutus Booth—prompted me to ask what role these family members had played in the life of John Wilkes Booth. When I began the project, I knew very little about the Booth family.

What did you learn during the course of your research that surprised you?

So many things were startling and revealing. But to name a few, I loved discovering that John Wilkes's father, Junius, had been an associate and disciple of the scandalous British poet Lord Byron, and a longtime drinking partner of Texas hero Sam Houston. I was fascinated to learn that Edwin Booth and Laura Keene, the actress on stage the night Lincoln died, had previously shared a romantic relationship, followed later by an acrimonious copyright battle in the courts over whether or not Edwin's brother-in-law, John Sleeper Clarke, had the right to perform Laura's play, "Our American Cousin." Edwin's close, lifelong relationship with Julia Ward Howe, author of "The Battle Hymn of the Republic," was also news to me.

Where did you do your research? What archives did you visit?

Since 2005, I have been touring research institutions across the map to document the family story. My work started in Harvard University's vast manuscript archive, Houghton Library, where the 19th-Century American Theater Collection is housed, with its staggering amounts of Booth material. From there, I proceeded to other repositories of Booth material: the Hampden-Booth Library at The Players in New York; the Folger Shakespeare Library; the Library of Congress; the Boston Athenaeum; the Billy Rose Theater Collection at the New York Public Library; the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum; the Free Library of Philadelphia; the Chicago History Museum; and the various Rare Book and Special Collections Departments of the University of Rochester, Princeton University, University of Chicago, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and University of Tampa--among other places. It was a wonderful experience.

How was the title of your book chosen?

The Booths were a family of Shakespearean actors. Junius Brutus Booth and his sons Edwin, John Wilkes and Junius, Jr., spent so much time performing tragedies that it made sense to delve into the plays of Shakespeare for title material. In the fourth act of "Hamlet," before the play's bloody climax, the hero (a part enacted frequently by both Edwin and John Wilkes) finally resolves to take violent action against his enemy, and to set his plot against Denmark's King in motion. Hamlet pushes aside the lingering doubts he had about his existential purpose, and resolutely picks up a sword. "From this time forth," he declares, "my thoughts be bloody, or be nothing worth." I originally selected the line as a title for one of the concluding chapters, loving how it captured the moment of dramatic tension when Shakespeare's greatest character resolves his inner conflict and seeks revenge. My wonderful editor at Free Press then pounced on the line, suggesting we use it as the title of the book itself.

The subtitle for your book (The Bitter Rivalry Between Edwin and John Wilkes Booth That Led to an American Tragedy) sets up some fairly high expectations for potential readers. Do you feel satisfied your book meets those expectations?

Absolutely. We can all agree, beyond question, that John Wilkes Booth was motivated by his deep-rooted loyalty to the Confederacy and by his strong identification with the people of the Southern states. At the same time, his exceptional family history made him entirely unique among recruits to the Confederate Secret Service, setting him apart, in so many ways, from the rank and file of men who followed that cause. My intent in writing this book was to re-examine the life of John Wilkes Booth--particularly his youth and the many years he spent as a struggling actor--through the lens of his famous theatrical clan. Many of the rare Booth letters, papers, and diaries I employed to write this book had not been previously explored by Civil War historians. My five-year search through those materials revealed new elements to the assassin's personal story, adding another dimension to my understanding of his character and formative experiences. It was clear that Junius Brutus Booth and Edwin Booth had been central figures in John Wilkes's life.

Here's a question I just realized I probably wouldn't ask if you were a man: How do you balance the demands of researching and writing a book with the demands of homemaking and young motherhood? Don't answer this question if you feel it's inappropriate.

I think this is an entirely appropriate question. It took years to write the book, and the work was often all-consuming. My son, Nick, was a toddler when I started, and it was important to me that he join me on all research expeditions. My husband, my parents and my in-laws, eager to help make this possible, would take turns traveling with us on the road, so that the research work became very much a family affair. My husband pitched in heroically at home, helping with housework and cooking, so I could have time to write. The book is dedicated to these two great guys, my husband and son, in gratitude for their generous support. One of the best moments came recently, when Nick, who is now in elementary school, was able to see an advanced copy of the book and read aloud the dedication paragraphs in which I thank him and his dad for all their help.

A similar question authors are often asked: What is your writing routine like? Do you write at the same time everyday? Is there a certain place where you do your writing? Are there any rituals you engage in as an author?

My writing desk is my favorite piece of furniture: it's where I go after I take my son to school. Simply sitting at it puts me in a good mood for work. I do wish, however, that writerly inspiration came at the same time every day. Too often while working on this project, an idea would come in the middle of the night, forcing me to get up and go to the desk in the dark to scribble it down!

Who are your favorite authors and what are your favorite books?

Doris Kearns Goodwin is my all-time favorite author--I love her WWII history of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, No Ordinary Time, and of course her monumental Lincoln biography, Team of Rivals. Goodwin is a presidential historian, with a PhD in Government, yet I am inspired by her intention to portray all facets of the lives of our leaders, so that their records take on fresh meaning and significance. She has a tremendous gift for integrating the private and public identities of the greatest Americans, thereby illuminating their characters and revealing new truths about their experiences, and about our history as a nation. She is also an extraordinary prose stylist, writing with clarity, grace and precision.

For more info, visit Nora Titone's brand new website:

Be sure to click on "Older Posts" below to read more about Spirits of Tudor Hall. 

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Nora Titone's Non-Fiction Book My Thoughts Be Bloody

My Thoughts Be Bloody (a quote from Hamlet), published by Freedom Press (division of Simon and Schuster) in October 2010, is centered on the relationship between Edwin and John Wilkes Booth. Titone has done research on a professional basis for authors such as well-known historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, who wrote the preface for My Thoughts Be Bloody.

Comment on book from Simon and Schuster website:

"Why did John Wilkes Booth do it? In My Thoughts Be Bloody young historian Nora Titone is one of the few to have genuinely explored this question. In doing so, she has crafted a fascinating psychological drama about one of the central events of the Civil War: the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. This book promises to stimulate lively historical debate, and will be a treat for every Civil War buff who always pondered that haunting question, “what made him pull that trigger?” Bravo on a marvelous achievement."

-- Jay Winik, author of April 1865 and The Great Upheaval

Author Bio and Photo from Simon & Schuster website:

"Nora Titone studied American History and Literature as an undergraduate at Harvard University, and earned an M.A. in History at the University of California, Berkeley. She has worked as a historical researcher for a range of academics, writers and artists involved in projects about nineteenth-century America. She lives in Chicago with her husband, a professor at the University of Chicago, and their son. This is her first book."


Nancy Carosi in Period Dress at Tudor Hall, September 12, 2010

Nancy Carosi was all dressed up and ready to go shopping in the style of a well-to-do woman of the 1860s. Behind her is one of the many other dresses she brought to display for the entertainment and edification of visitors to Tudor Hall on Sunday, September 12, 2010.
(Photo by Kim Edwards)

Nancy Carosi also brought a number of hats typical of the mid-1860s
to display at Tudor Hall.
(Photo by Kim Edwards)

Be sure to click on "Older Posts" below
to read more.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Junius Brutus Booth: Theatrical Prometheus by Dr. Stephen M. Archer Now Available in Paperback

Southern Illinois University Press recently launched the paperback edition of Junius Brutus Booth: Theatrical Prometheus by Dr. Stephen M. Archer. This biography of the patriarch of the Booth family was first published in 1992 and remains the definitive work on the life of one of America’s most successful and well-known Shakespearean actors of the early to mid-1800s. No other biography of Junius B. Booth Sr. has been published since 1992.

Dr. Archer taught theatre history and research methods at the University of Missouri at Columbia from 1971 until he retired in 1998. He is also the author of two theatrical bibliographies, several textbooks, and numerous articles on the theatre.

With the support and assistance of his wife, Kelly, Dr. Archer spent nine years researching and writing Junius Brutus Booth. The Archers agree that researching the gifted and eccentric actor was a fascinating experience, and they recall meeting a number of charming people in the process, including Dorothy and Howard Fox at Tudor Hall in the 1990s.

In 2004, Dr. Archer donated the bulk of the materials he collected while researching his book to the Booth Research Center of the Historical Society of Harford County. Volunteer Emily Andrews is currently creating electronic catalog records, which will eventually be available online, for the Stephen M. Archer/Junius B. Booth Collection.

Copies of the paperback edition are available via the Southern Illinois University Press website:,5564.aspx. It is also available at In addition, a download of the hardback edition of the book can be purchased on the Questia website.

Be sure to click on "Older Posts" below to read more.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Vivien Carter, Descendant of Junius B. Booth Sr, Still Starring in the Musical Chicago in London

Vivien Carter is currently starring in the role of Velma Kelly in a production of Chicago at the Cambridge Theatre in London. Vivien is the great-great-great-great granddaughter of Junius Brutus Booth Sr. and his first wife Marie Christine Adelaide Delannoy Booth via Booth's eldest son Richard. Ms. Carter is a native of Australia, and this is her first starring role.

What started out as a six-week "gig" for Vivien turned into a six-month contract. She will continue in her role as Velma Kelly until October 24, 2010.

For more information about the Cambridge Theatre and its production of Chicago:

For more information about Chicago:

Saturday, July 24, 2010

All Grown Up

Regular visitors to Tudor Hall have been keeping an anxious eye on this family of Canadian geese all summer. The goslings have grown so large it is difficult to tell them from their parents except for the fact that the parents continue to be so protective of their young and to herd them away whenever anyone approaches (unless that person has brought a treat--don't forget feeding wild animals including geese and ducks is discouraged by the Department of Parks and Recreation). In fact, the goslings are so grown up, the geese may have already flown to explore other parts of Harford County.

Photo by Kim Edwards.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Jill Redding Recognized by the Daughters of the American Revolution

 Jill Redding telling visitors to Tudor Hall about
Mary Ann Holmes Booth and her children.

The summer 2010 issue of the newsletter of the D.A.R. William Paca Chapter recently announced that Jill Redding placed third in the state for her community service work as a volunteer at Tudor Hall in 2009. Jill has drawn upon her experience as a professional actor to serve as a coach for the Spirits of Tudor Hall tour guides for the past three years. In addition, Jill recently teamed up her fellow volunteer Kim Edwards to lead a guided tour at Tudor Hall on Sunday, July 25, 2010. It was the first time either one of them had led a tour, and they both did a great job.

Kim Edwards stepped out of her role as reservations manager to team up with Jill Redding to lead a tour at Tudor Hall on July 25. Kim is especially interested in the architectural features of of Tudor Hall.

Mike Brown pointed out architectural features at Tudor Hall on one of the hottest days of the summer. Even though the heat index was in the mid-100 degree range, over 50 people toured Tudor Hall on Sunday, July 25th.

Please be sure to click on "Older Posts" to read more. 

Seen at Tudor Hall July 17, 2010

 There was a lot of "luck" for those attending the potluck supper at Tudor Hall on Saturday evening, July 17, 2010. There are many gifted cooks among our active volunteers.

On Saturday evening, July 17, 2010, fifteen "Spirits" braved the hot and humid weather to partake of a potluck supper at Tudor Hall. The food was delicious, and the company lively and in good spirits. We were especially pleased to have Emily Andrews and Judy Rogers of the Historical Society of Harford County join us. Emily is heroically preparing electronic catalog records for the Dr. Stephen M. Archer/Junius B. Booth Collection under Judy's supervision. Judy is a retired school librarian who has taken on the daunting task of supervising the creation of an electronic catalog for all the items in the historical society's vast holdings.

(Emily appears in the navy blue shirt in the above photo. Judy, wearing a green shirt, is sitting opposite Emily with her back to the camera.)

Monday, June 28, 2010

Nancy Carosi In Costume at Tudor Hall, June 27th

Nancy Carosi of Bel Air told visitors about Civil War era clothing during our tours on Sunday, June 27th. Nancy participates in many Civil War reenactments in Maryland and surrounding states throughout the year. She has nine costumes of the Civil War era that she wears as appropriate to the occasion. We were pleased to have Nancy join us on a very hot summer afternoon at Tudor Hall. Our guides and their support team enjoyed Nancy's presence as much as our visitors did. Nancy has promised to visit Tudor Hall again on some of our upcoming tour dates, promising that "next time" she will wear one of her other costumes. Photo by Dinah Faber

Nancy Carosi in the Booth Room at Tudor Hall with David Fried's portraits of Edwin and John Wilkes Booth in the background. A brand new exhibit about the family of Joseph and Ann Hall (an African American family with a long association with Tudor Hall) can be seen on the left. This is only one of many new exhibits that are going up at Tudor Hall this summer. We will post photos of the new exhibits soon. Photo by Dinah Faber

The front porch (or verandah) at Tudor Hall provides the perfect setting for Nancy Carosi in her Civil War era costume. Photo by Kim Edwards

Please Be Sure to Click on "Older Posts" Below to Read More About Spirits of Tudor Hall.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Spirits of Tudor Hall Starring You!

We are always looking for new volunteers. For information about volunteer opportunities, dig deep into our "Older Posts."

Seen at Tudor Hall June 13, 2010

Regular visitors to Tudor Hall have been watching the progress of this family of Canadian geese throughout the spring and summer with both joy and concern. The goslings will soon be as large as their attentive and wary parents! (Photo by Dinah Faber)

This damselfly is just one of the many insects enjoying the summer at Tudor Hall. Do you know how to tell the difference between a damselfly and a dragonfly? Damselflies fold their wings when at rest. Dragonflies leave theirs outspread. (Photo by Kim Edwards)

The daylilies are in blossom once more on the island in the pond at Tudor Hall. Obviously, nature continues to thrive at Tudor Hall despite the changes to surrounding properties over the past few years. (Photo by Kim Edwards)

This door knocker continues to welcome visitors to Tudor Hall just as it has for many years. It is a reminder of the years Howard and Dorothy Fox owned the property and lived at Tudor Hall (late 1960s-late 1990s). (Photo by Kim Edwards)

Tudor Hall is still a magical place!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Remembering the Prince of Players

Edwin Thomas Booth passed away in his private apartment at The Players in New York City on June 7, 1893, with his daughter Edwina by his side. He was 59 at the time of his death, worn out decades of traveling and appearing onstage, grief over the many tragedies he experienced in his life, and by heavy tobacco use. As a young man, he sometimes conducted himself in a manner he later regretted. However, as a mature adult, he earned a reputation for dignity and courage and was the bedrock upon which his mother and siblings rested. Tested over and over again by illness, death, and tragic events among his family members, he rose to the test each time and continued on, worse for the wear, but undaunted. May he rest in peace at last.

Be sure to click on "Older Posts" below to read more about Spirits of Tudor Hall.

Friday, May 28, 2010

530 Visitors to Tudor Hall Since Fall 2008

Our lead tour guide, Kris Thomson, led our very first tour of the ground floor of Tudor Hall on Sunday, October 26, 2008. Since then over 500 people have participated in our tours.

The numbers below represent only the Sunday afternoon tours. Additional special tours have been conducted for several different groups, including a local chapter of the Red Hat Ladies, a local chapter of the DAR, a group of home school parents, etc.

Participants in the tours have come from Maryland, Washington DC area, Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey, West Virginia, Virginia, South Carolina, Georgia, Ohio, Washington state, and California.

We would like to thank our guides and their support team for making the tours possible.
2008 (Our very first year.)
13 Tours
175 Visitors

2009 (Construction of a new roof and chimney for Tudor Hall cut our tour season short.)
9 Tours
135 Visitors

2010 (Additional tours are scheduled for July, Aug., Sept., and Oct. 2010)
14 Tours
220 Visitors

Total To Date (June 27, 2010)
36+ Tours
530+ Visitors!

Monday, May 10, 2010

John Wilkes Booth Born May 10, 1838

This oil portrait of John Wilkes Booth by David Fried was donated to Harford County and Tudor Hall by the artist. Several other artworks by Mr. Fried are also displayed at Tudor Hall.

John Wilkes Booth was born on May 10, 1838, in the two-story log house on the Booth farm in Harford County, Maryland. His parents were Junius Brutus Booth Sr. and Mary Ann Holmes Booth. He was the ninth of ten children born to his parents. How this favorite son went on to become one of the most infamous people in American history is a heart-breaking and tragic story that still fascinates people world wide.

Tudor Hall Roof Replacement Project Receives Historic Preservation Award on May 7, 2010

Left to right: Tony Townley (Project Manager) and Ken Blomquist (President) Decker Contracting of Elkton, Maryland; Arden McClune (Director, Harford County Department of Parks and Recreation); Bill McKean (Project Manager, Harford County Department of Public Works); James Chrismer (Chair, Harford County Historic Preservation Commission).

Decker Contracting of Elkton, Maryland, and the Harford County Department of Parks and Recreation received a 2010 Preservation Project Award for the Tudor Hall Roof Replacement Project during the Harford County Historic Preservation Commission's 15th Annual Historic Preservation Awards ceremony at the Historical Society of Harford County on May 7, 2010. Construction of a new roof and chimney at Tudor Hall was completed during the summer of 2009.

After the ceremony, representatives of Decker Construction, the Harford County Department of Parks and Recreation, and the Harford County Department of Public Works posed on the steps of the historical society with other award recipients.

Seen At Tudor Hall May 8, 2010

The brand new United States flag provided by the Harford County Department of Parks and Recreation proudly waving at Tudor Hall.

Ladies of Harley motorcycle club arriving at Tudor Hall.
The Ladies of Harley turn out to be two "ladies" and five "gentlemen" honorary  members. One of the ladies (far right) and three of the gentleman appear above. Spirits of Tudor Hall tour guide Joyce Bauer lead the group on a tour of Tudor Hall.

Rhododendron in full bloom on the south side of the house.

Iris blossoming in the "circle" on the north side of the house.
A family of Canadian geese is making the pond at Tudor Hall its home this spring. The family includes six goslings who were hatched on the island in the middle of the pond.

Be sure to click on "Older Posts" to read more.

Monday, May 3, 2010

May 2, Tours Observe Junius B. Booth Sr.'s May Day Birthday

 Spirits of Tudor Hall tour guide Joyce Bauer led the 1:00 p.m. tour at Tudor Hall on a hot and muggy Sunday afternoon on May 2, 2010.

Lead tour guide Kris Thomson pointed out the window pane in the reception hall that was once thought to contain initials carved into the glass by John Wilkes Booth. This "story" has turned out to be just a "story."

May Day 2010 was the 214th birthday of Junius Brutus Booth Sr. In observation of this important date in the Booth family calendar, the Junius B. Booth Society provided cupcakes and cold drinks to everyone who participated in the tours on May 2nd. The magnolia blossoms came from a tree on the property. You can find information about the Junius B. Booth Society including membership forms and the May 2010 issue of the Booth History Spotlight (newsletter of the society) at:

Star of Jerusalem (wildflower introduced from Europe) are in full bloom throughout Harford County, including Tudor Hall.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Don't Miss Our Older Posts

Be sure to click on "Older Posts" at the bottom of this page for more photos and information about our activities at Tudor Hall over the past two years.

Vivien Carter, Descendant of Junius B. Booth Sr, Starring in the Musical Chicago in London

Vivien Carter is currently starring in the role of Velma Kelly in a production of Chicago at the Cambridge Theatre in London. Vivien is the great-great-great-great granddaughter of Junius Brutus Booth Sr. and his first wife Marie Christine Adelaide Delannoy Booth via Booth's eldest son Richard. Ms. Carter is a native of Australia, and this is her first starring role.

For more information about the Cambridge Theatre and its production of Chicago:

For more information about Chicago:

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Gary Sloan, Edwin Booth, Hamlet Video on YouTube

Over the years, Gary Sloan has explored the life of Edwin Booth via his one man show about the great actor. For a small sample of what the show is like go to:

Thank you to Robert Cook for bringing this video to our attention.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Stacy Keach Receives Outstanding Lead Actor Award in Washington DC on April 5, 2010

Stacy Keach received the Robert Prosky Award for Outstanding Lead Actor, Resident Play, at the Helen Hayes Awards in Washington, DC, on April 5, 2010. Mr. Keach was nominated for his starring role in the Shakespeare Theatre Company production of King Lear. Mr. Keach tied for the award with Karl Miller for his performance in Angels in America at the Forum Theatre.

For more information about the awards:

To see a photo of Stacy Keach with Gary Sloan and Christie Brown, click on the link below. Mr. Keach, Mr. Sloan, and Ms. Brown were very active in the Preservation Association for Tudor Hall and still take an interest in the fortunes of Tudor Hall.

Junius Brutus Booth Sr. Born May 1, 1796

This oil portrait of Junius Brutus Booth Sr. by Baltimore area artist David Fried is displayed over the fireplace in the reception hall at Tudor Hall. Framed images of his wife Mary Ann and their six children who survived to adulthood line the mantle below the portrait. Four of their children died in childhood.
(Left click on photo to see a larger image.)
Photo by Jackie La Rocca.

May Day 2010 will mark the 214th anniversary of the birth of Junius Brutus Booth Sr. His parents were Richard and Elizabeth Booth who lived in the Clerkenwell section of greater London at the time of his birth.  He had a younger brother named Algernon Sydney who died in infancy, and a younger sister named Jane who would follow him to the United States with her own family in the 1820s.

An article entitled "The Dramatic Genius of Junius Brutus Booth Sr." by Mr. Clark appears in the May 2010 issue of the Booth History Spotlight (newsletter of the Junius B. Booth Society, Inc). An article entitled "John Wilkes Booth: Matinee Idol" also by Peter Clark appears in the same issue. You can read the May Spotlight at:

You can become a member of the Junius B. Booth Society, Inc., using a membership form found at:

Monday, April 26, 2010

Tips for Getting the Most from Our Blog

Please make return visits. We update the blog on a regular basis.

Left click on any photo to see a larger image.

Be sure to click on "Older Posts" at the bottom of this page for more photos and information about our activities at Tudor Hall over the past two years.

Thanks for visiting our blog! Please return often.

Misty Sunday Afternoon at Tudor Hall

Sunday, April 25, was the second tour day of 2010. It was a misty, overcast afternoon, but the flowering trees such as the red bud tree in the photo above brightened the day. Over 40 people participated in the tours.

This lovely dogwood tree was in full bloom beside the pond where a pair of geese have a nest on the island in the middle of the pond.
A pair of ducks was also observed at the pond.

Dogwood bough heavily laden with blossoms.

Close up of dogwood blossom.

Please Be Sure To Click On "Older Posts" Below For More News and Updates!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Flat Stanley Visits Edwin Booth at Tudor Hall

Flat Stanley recently visited Harford County after Brooklynn Aikens, from the George Washington Carver Primary School in Gonzales, Louisiana, mailed him to her grandmother, Joyce Edwards of Street Maryland.

Joyce brought Flat Stanley for a tour to Tudor Hall, the historic Booth family home, where he was photographed with the famous Shakespearian actor Edwin Booth.

 For more information about Flat Stanley and his many adventures, please visit:

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Look for Us on Facebook and Twitter

You can now find Spirits of Tudor Hall on Facebook and Twitter.

Center for the Arts Featured in Aegis, April 14 and 16, 2010

Part one of an article about the Center for the Arts appears in the April 14, 2010, edition of the Aegis. The title of the article is "Harford's Place for the Arts," and it is the lead article in the "People, Places & Things" section on page AA1. Part two of the article titled "To Build an Arts Center" appears in the April 16th edition of the Aegis, and it is also the lead article for the "People, Places & Things" section. Bryna Zumer, L'Oreal Thompson, and Rachel Konopacki are the co-authors of the articles.

The Center for the Arts currently has its offices at Tudor Hall while the organization makes prepares to build a regional arts center in Harford County. The April 14th article includes a photo of Sallee Kunkel Filkins, executive director of the Center for the Arts, seated on the sofa in the Booth Room at Tudor Hall with David Fried's oil portraits of Edwin and John Wilkes Booth behind her. Unfortunately, the caption does not identify Edwin or John Wilkes and does not mention Mr. Fried.The article also includes a photo of Tudor Hall that was taken during the winter holidays several years ago.

The April 14th article quotes Ms. Filkins as saying, "Ideally, it [a new arts center] would be built in five to seven years." The April 16th says Ms. Filkins "fully expects a building campaign to be underway in several years, as soon as the county executive officially announces a site."

An online version of part one of the article including the photo of Sallee Filkins and the Fried portraits appears at:

Monday, April 12, 2010

Over 45 People Attend 1st Tours of 2010

These lovely "Poet's Narcissus" welcomed visitors to Tudor Hall on Sunday, April 11, 2010.

We were delighted to welcome over 45 people to Tudor Hall for our first tours of 2010. It was a "picture perfect" day with temperatures in the mid-70s and a light on-and-off breeze.

Kris Thomson, who serves as the "fearless leader" of our tour guides, led the first tour of the day.

This will be Mike Brown's third year as a tour guide at Tudor Hall. Mike led the second and third tours of the day.

We are always delighted to see children enjoying the grounds at Tudor Hall. This little girl had a wonderful time picking dandelions amid the many wild violets also blossoming on the front lawn.

This photo just doesn't capture the rich color of the violets sprinkled throughout the grounds at Tudor Hall and across Harford County.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

James T. Wollon Architectural Tour Much Appreciated by Our Volunteers

James T. Wollon
 Photo by Jackie LaRocca, March 28, 2010, at Tudor Hall

On Sunday, March 28, 2010, James T. Wollon led an architectural tour of Tudor Hall for our tour guides and other interested volunteers. In addition to Mr. Wollon, 20 people were present the day of the tour. Mr. Wollon is a local retired restoration and preservation architect. He is also the great-grandson of Ella Mahoney who lived at Tudor Hall for nearly 70 years (1879-1948), and he shared memories of visiting his great-grandmother when he was a small boy.

The tour began outside on a very chilly and overcast Sunday afternoon. Photo by Jackie LaRocca, March 28, 2010

Mr. Wollon continued his tour inside Tudor Hall with the group seated comfortably in the largest of the current meeting rooms on the first floor. Originally, the room served as the dining room. Later it served as the living room. Photo by Jackie LaRocca, March 28, 2010