Baltimore, Maryland area

We always enjoy the surrounding areas whereever we are working on a MMAP project.  With a lot of history in the area, this was no exception.

Ellicott City
During a MMAP project, we have a ladies day out.  During the first week the ladies visited Banneker Museum, which honors the life and times of the famous astronomer, surveyor and clockmaker, Benjamin Banneker.  It is located in the small community of Oella, just a few miles from Windsor Mills.
We then continued on to Ellicott City for lunch and shopping!
Towson
The first weekend we were here in Windsor Mill, MD, we decided to go north to Towson and check out Hampton National Historic Site, “A Palace in the Wilderness”. It had been in the Ridgely family since 1745. In 1828, Governor Ridgely freed most of his 300-plus slaves in his will. 


In 1948, when it was open to the public, the family members moved into the lower house, which was built first and used during construction 1783-1790.  The lower house was used as the foremans house until then.  I wouldn’t mind living in it! 
The spring house is still there,

as is the ice house
The cemetery is still used by the family. 
The seed that resulted in the cedar of Lebanon tree was reported to have made its way from the Middle East in a shoebox, planted in the 1830’s.  It was huge….check out compared to the house!
The National Park Service took over administration of the mansion in 1979.

Annapolis
The town of Annapolis was a step back in time.  We parked and enjoyed walking.  There is so much history, and buildings are the classic brick and very beautiful,
Governor House
and the home of Francis Scott Keyes 
The State House is the oldest state capitol in continuos legislative use and the only state capitol to have been a U.S. Capitol.  It was built in 1772-79,
and is the oldest in continuous legislative use,

and has the largest wooden dome in the country.

The waterfront docks in Annapolis were beautiful

There was a boat show going on while we were there

We  got to the United States Naval Academy in time for the noon formation, very impressive!

The 1904 chapel was impressive and John Paul Jones is buried in the crypt below, but it was closed, so we were unable to go inside.

                We had lunch at the Drydock Restaurant on the campus.

Havre de Grace
Havre de Grace was one of the War of 1812 sites, where the British forces landed, sacked and burned the town.
Concord Point Lighthouse was built in 1827 and is the oldest continuously operated lighthouse in the State of Maryland.
There is a wildlife preserve along the Cheseapeake Bay, which we enjoyed walking around

We visited the Susquehanna museum and locks

and got in on part of the festival
And the most unusual store…I have a lot of buttons I wonder sometimes what to do with them…. this store was FULL of buttons, including pictures made with buttons!


Baltimore
Baltimore was approximately 10 miles away, and we visited it a couple of times. 

The first was by accident…After church we were looking for a seafood restaurant, and the GPS took us to Baltimore…the same day the Ravens were playing!!  We were amazed at the row houses…. and heard later there were over 100,000!  

We found a fabulous seafood place, Phillips, and had a great time.
We visited Harbor Place, the shopping area, around the inner harbor,
a reproduction of the Maryland topsail schooner, Pride of Baltimore II
Later we all went to Baltimore, touring Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine.  It is the “site of the Battle of Baltimore on Sept. 14, 1814, that led to the penning of the Star-Spangled Banner”.

We also were able to go up to the top of the World Trade Center Building, getting a great view of the city.
The names of everyone who died are etched on the windows of the 23rd floor viewing.  the names below the line are those who lived in Maryland.
The brick tower is where ammunition was made during the war.
The western view
as well as the aquarium, and Chesapeake, and submarine
I wonder what this bay looks like after Sandy!
This piece of metal from the towers in NY is made into a memorial, with names of the MD residents who died that day etched on one side.
The granite has a timeline marked with a carved niche for each event.  It is situated so the sun follows it to mark the time like a sundial, with the shadow of the building.  We were there in the afternoon so could not see the shadow. 

Ft. George G. Meade
On our last weekend, we visited the National Cryptologic Museum, located near the National Security Agency, half way between Washington and Baltimore.  It was a very interesting to see some of what goes on behind the scenes, even though now outdated.  Many machines and computers used in the past are stored here.  One of the supercomputers was shelved because it could process only 65 billion operations per second- too slow!!  And it was the size of a room!  A small chip can hold just as much information now.  
The National Security Agency is always at work, and notifies the White House of any concerns within minutes.  After seeing this museum and watching an informational movie, I cannot fathom why the president has to have an investigation into the Benghazi-gate before making comments.  He would have known exactly what was going on prior to the incident!  Sounds like wagging the dog, complete with delay of the report until after the election! Nuff said! 
I think the most intriguing is the story of the KGB and the Great Seal:
“In 1946, Soviet school children presented a two foot wooden replica of the Great Seal of the United States to Ambassador Averell Harriman.  The ambassador hung the seal in his office in Spaso House (Ambassador’s residence).  During George F. Kennan’s ambassadorship in 1952, a routine security check discovered that the seal contained a microphone and resonant cavity which could be stimulated from an outside radio signal.”

This museum had a library with books on cryptology as early as 1518.  They also highlighted  the famous Indian code talkers as well as other sources of cryptology.
The secure phone is shown being used on 9/11 by George Bush when he was at the elementary school and was told about the attack.
It made me stop and think about the amount of equipment needs to be taken with the president whenever he leaves the White House… “Just in case”!
Technology is truly amazing!

We left Friday morning ahead of Sandy hitting the area.  I just talked to CEF, and the Lord was merciful, with no damage to their building.  They even have the carpet laid and the tile set, with only grouting to do!  The room we worked on is finished, ready for a training meeting on Monday!  The Lord’s timing is excellent.