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PAST Fire Museum Seminars
Hotel Info Download
the Seminar Registration Form
21st Annual Fire Museum Seminar
Baltimore, Maryland • October 29 – November 1, 2010
Attendees of the 2010 Fire
Museum Network Seminar in Baltimore MD
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Join your fellow museum colleagues as we learn, share
and network. The Fire Museum Network is proud to announce
its 2010 Fire Museum Seminar to be hosted by the Fire Museum
of Maryland in Lutherville, Maryland. Commencing on Friday
night (October 29) with registration and Show & Tell,
followed by a full day of presentations on Saturday, and
a full day (or two) of visiting other local fire museums.
The Fire Museum Seminar is a mix of formal presentations,
informal discussions, and tours of local fire (and sometimes
non-fire) museums. It is educational sessions address both
operating a museum and firefighting history…. It’s for those
who are just starting a fire museum, and those who have
been around a while…. It is a time to learn, and a place
to see and hear what other museums are doing (or perhaps
what they should be doing)…. It is a chance to share problems
and solutions, exchange ideas and information, and compare
your organization with others…. It’s an opportunity to network.
It is late nights spent discussing how many steam fire engines
are left in the country; new exhibit techniques; or the
merits of the latest museum collections database program.
In short, it's… great friends, great food, and a great fun!
The Fire Museum of Maryland (FMM) is pleased to host
this meeting so that they can show off their stellar collection
of more than forty pieces of fire apparatus. In addition
to being open for visitation on Friday and Saturday, this
year's Fire Museum Seminar has been scheduled to coincide
with the FMM's "Lantern Night" -- a public special during
which the museum's overhead fluorescent lights are turned
off, the candles, and kerosene lanterns, and etched glass
signal lamps are lit, and the public is invited to mingle
with costumed interpreters and "see fire apparatus in a
Eager to get started? -- Sign up for the optional early-bird
fund raising workshop being offered from 1:30 to 4:30pm
on Friday afternoon.
While this year's seminar is based in (and organized
by) the Fire Museum of Maryland, a motor-coach trip to the
Museum in Philadelphia and the
Fire Museum in Harrisburg on Sunday will provide seminar
attendees an opportunity to examine two more first-class
fire museums. Lunch, snacks and on-bus narration will be
included. On Monday attendees will have the option of visiting
a few more local fire museums -- the Friendship Firehouse
Museum in Alexandria VA, the Friendship Fire Association
Museum in the District of Columbia, or the Baltimore City
F.D. Museum in Baltimore, MD. While the trips on monday
are optional (and for an additional fee) all of the curators
and directors of these museums are looking forward to sharing
their extraordinary collections with you, and we hope that
you will join us for a long weekend!
Metropolitan Baltimore in late October is beautiful and
the weather moderate. and as always, regional food delights
have been planned. The BWI airport is easy to navigate and
although you’ll have to arrange for ground transportation
from the airport, once you get to the Crowne Plaza you won’t
need a car.
We encourage you to review
the registration materials and
REGISTER BEFORE AUGUST 30!
Schedule of Events
Friday, October 29th
On Friday everyone is invited to drop by the
Fire Museum of Maryland to look at exhibits at your
own speed. If you need a ride from the hotel, call
the FMM at 410-321-7500. The Museum is located straight
down (south)York Road 2.1 miles. Please come to
the Office door and buzz! There is a Subway and
a Friendly’s restaurants within walking distance.
The optional workshop starts at 1:30 in the Discovery
Room where Mary Ellen Hern will talk about the basic
pyramid of donors until about 3:00 and then delve
into how to raise funds for a special project. She
is a very experienced and successful fund raiser
in New York State as well as a good presenter. Her
resume also includes curatorial and directorial
concerns and I promise a valuable workshop. Museum
staff and those attendees with cars will shuttle
folks back to the hotel. Dinner is on your own.
The Plaza has a restaurant and there are chain restaurants
nearby (car is preferred).
Friday evening starts with registration from
6 to 8:30 at the Crowne Plaza. At 7:00 in the Chesapeake
Room President Tom McDonald will chair the annual
Membership Meeting. Bring your concerns, or better
yet, email him in advance. firstname.lastname@example.org Starting
at 7:30 we’ll watch a DVD of our museums. Each fire
museum is urged to put together a 2-3 minute DVD
introducing their museum, as it were, giving highlights
as you choose. No more than three minutes per museum!
Send it to FMM and we’ll compile them onto a master
file and make copies for all registrants to take
home. A slide show, a video, sound narration or
background track are all possible. Use your imagination!
Be sure to make a title at the beginning. Send your
DVD to the Fire Museum of Maryland by slow mail
by 28 September.
There will be snacks, sodas and water. The hotel
has a bar in the restaurant that will be open until
11. After we see the Museum Intro. DVD, we’ll open
the floor for show & tell. Power point and slide
projectors will be provided.
Saturday, October 30th
On Saturday late registration will begin at 8:30
a.m. The workshops will be held in the Dulaney Valley
Ballroom of the hotel starting with announcements
and introductions at 9:00. Frank McKelvey will lead
off with “Telling the Story”. Frank has been teaching
museum studies and consulting on museum design and
interpretation for 44 years, including the New Jersey
Fire Museum. He’s going to talk about how to tell
a good story. Next will be Tim Winkle discussing
the CIGNA Collection: arguably the finest of the
private insurance company collections. Tim is on
the curatorial staff of the Smithsonian and oversaw
the incoming CIGNA Collection and the dispersal
of a small portion of same, to many of our museums
At noon we’ll take a lunch break in the Chesapeake
Room and you should make a choice of dishes on the
registration form. If you are a vegetarian or have
other dietary concerns, for any of the meals, please
note them on the form and we’ll make the appropriate
One o’clock will see us back in the Ballroom
for an illustrated talk on the United Kingdom’s
fire service heritage. Mick Kernan is a retired
fire fighter of 30 years, and working on a grant,
completed a survey of American fire museums last
year which he will integrate into his talk on British
museums. Then at 2:00 Melissa Marsh Heaver will
talk about collections care of 2D objects. Attending
to these flat materials is critical if we expect
them to last a few more hundred years. Melissa is
the registrar and archivist for the FMM, and served
at the National Trust as senior collections manager
for 13 years. There will be a cookie break afterwards.
At 3:00 David Steinitz, board member of the FMM
and lighting engineer who owns a lighting specialties
company will demonstrate techniques for punching
up our displays but that are available on a low
budget. There will be a thirty minute break before
dinner will be served in the Chesapeake Room, 4:30-6:00.
After dinner, please be prepared to depart for the
FMM. There will be one bus making two trips: first
departure will be about 5:20; second departure will
be about 6:00.
The Fire Museum of Maryland presents its annual
“Lantern Night” from 6 until 8. (The FMN Board decided
to come here this weekend to coincide with this
event.) Seminar attendees will mingle with the public
to explore the museum under subdued lighting, hidden
spots, and twenty or more candle and kerosene lanterns.
There will also be interpreters in period attire
from many different periods. Some years we’ve had
as many as 16. The Discovery Room will be closed
while staff sets up for the dessert party. At 8:00
when we boot out the public, Classic Catering and
FMM staff will serve dessert and turn on the regular
lights. FMM staff will be positioned throughout
to discuss their favorite projects…the archives
and library will also be open to you. At 9:45 the
first bus will be available for boarding to return
to the hotel.
Sunday, October 31st
Sunday will be a full day so have a sturdy breakfast
at 7:30 in the Ballroom and board one of two coaches
between 8:15 and 8:30. Our first stop will be the
Fireman’s Hall (about a 1 3/4 hour drive). A representative
of the FH will be on each coach to talk about their
mission, their collections and to orientate you
while en route. Harry Magee and his staff are chaffing
at the bit to show off their wonderful facility!
They will also serve us a Philadelphia lunch packed
with things of local taste such as the Hoagie, soft
pretzel, Tasty Kake and root beer.
Then we’re back onto the coaches for Harrisburg
and a visit to the Penna. Nat’l Fire Museum (PNFM)
and its fine collection. Both museums reside in
retired fire houses. Representatives of PNFM will
introduce us to their mission and collections en
route. John Wagoner and his team are all steamed
up over having such an august group visit. We’ll
enjoy a light snack and board for the trip back
to the hotel at 5:00. This will be your "quiet time"
for the day!
Have dinner on your own. There is a restaurant
in the Crowne Plaza or local (causual) restaurants
nearby. There are also several nice pubs or seafood
restaurants that will require a car and some extra
At 8:00 we will meet again in the Chesapeake
Room to hear Matt Lee talk about the fire at Hand-in-Hand
Graphics. Because Matt is a good friend of Ken’s
and because he was the coordinator of the relief
effort, I’ve asked him to address what he would
have done differently and to also make suggestions
for our own preparedness. There is a second presentation
pending on disaster planning. The hotel bar will
be open until 11 and of course, we’ll have snacks,
water and soda for our delectation.
Monday, November 1st -- Optional Day Trips
Monday the 1st of November is an optional day
and I hope that you will consider staying for one
of the two bus trips. This area is blessed with
many fire sites but they require some driving.
OPTION No. 1 is to go to Alexandria and work
our way back north. Leaving at 8:30 we will visit
the fire house built in 1855 which is now the museum.
Bill Kehoe will be our host for the Friendship Veteran’s
Fire Engine Ass’n. A few blocks away is an in-service
house built in 1901 which displays a steamer. In
between are historic buildings from 1759 and plenty
of good pubs and restaurants. About 1:00 we will
depart for Washington, D.C. and the Friendship Fire
Ass’n Museum on the second floor of E-31 and Res.4.
Chief Jim Embry, ret., will be our host. There may
be an extra rig brought up on the apron. Water and
snacks will be provided. We expect to be back to
the Crowne Plaza by 6 or 7pm.
OPTION No. 2 is to bus into Baltimore City. Boarding
at 9:00, this will be a more leisurely trip as there
will be less road time. First stop will be the world-renown
Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Museum partially housed
in a spectacular 1888 passenger car round house.
We’ll lunch at the Bay Café in newly re-vitalized
Canton. About 1:00 we will visit the Steadman fire
station housing multiple engines, the rescue squad,
a medic and chief. It is at the base of another
landmark, the Bromo Seltzer Tower. The 1972 H.P.
Pumping Station, now O.O.S., will be open to us.
A short easterly ride will take us to the Baltimore
City F.D. Museum operated by the Box 414 Association
(think coffee wagon) and our host will be Bob Brown,
curator. This is a one-bay 1853 building with 117’
Italianate bell tower. Helmets of the fire fighters
killed in the line of duty are on display. Baltimore
was the first city to introduce a modular ambulance
and a Swab prototype is on display. Back to the
hotel about 4:30.
Tuesday, November 2nd-- Optional-Optional
If you are prepared to stay another day, (and
ask with rapturous enthusiasm!) I think we could
do a car trip to the Royal Fire Co. ca.1880 fire
house in York, Pa. This is without doubt one of
the most ornate Victorian fire houses extant. (It
is not as imposing as the onion-domed Aurora, IL
museum and more like a Queen Anne style.) It contains
many collections, both public and private, but has
been closed as a museum. Collections are being dispersed.
Its future is unsure and it could be put up for
development by next year. This is a two-bay, three
story monstrosity with etched glass horse stall
doors, furier’s bench, exercise paddock, and much
more. York is a 45 minute car trip from the hotel.
The York County Heritage Trust, which manages the
fire house, also operates a house museum and a handsome
industrial museum complex.
Your Host -- the Fire Museum of Maryland, in Lutherville,
The Fire Museum
of Maryland has forty wheeled vehicles dating from 1806
to 1957, an estimated 12,000 images in the photo archives
and a basic research library of about 3,000 books. Some
of the hand-drawn, horse-drawn and motorized rigs are used
as part of the educational mission, so the two outside musters
held annually and the Lantern Night are significant operations.
Our newest exhibit is the on-going fabrication of an 1871
fire house with cast-iron facade salvaged from Baltimore's
old Engine 8.
For those who are driving in, the Fire Museum of Maryland
is located at the interchange of Balto. Beltway 695 and
The Host Hotel -- Crowne
Plaza, Baltimore North
The host hotel for the Fire Museum Seminar is the
newly renovated "Crowne Plaza Baltimore North." They
will be offering a special FMN rate of $89/per night
(single or double occupancy). The hotel is located 2.1
miles north of the Fire Museum of Maryland at the Timonium
Road (East) Exit of the Harrisburg Expressway (Route
The Crowne Plaza has a restaurant and there are fast-food
places within walking distance. For those who are driving
in, the FMM is located at the interchange of Balto.
Beltway 695 and Exit 26B, and the hotel is on the Harrisburg
Exwy. 83 and the Timonium Rd. East exit, 2.1miles north
of the FMM.
For more information about the
hotel, visit their website:
Crowne Plaza Baltimore North
The "Crowne Plaza Baltimore North." is about a thirty
minute drive from the Baltimore-Washington Airport to
the hotel/fire museum. We recomend using the Airport
Super-Suttle shuttle bus -- they are offering $35 one
way or $68 round trip pre-paid for the first person,
then $12 per additional persons. (you can book your
reservations online at -
Registration for this year's Fire Museum Seminar,
is $205 and includes all the seminars, handouts, admission
and transportation to area museums, and lunch and dinner
on both Saturday and Sunday. If you are a current member
(or become a member) of the Fire Museum Network, and
if you register BEFORE AUGUST 30, we will offer a DISCOUNTED
REGISTRATION rate of $160.
- Before August 30 -- Download and print
the registration information.
saved this year's Fire Museum Seminar Registration
Form as a "pdf" document. You will need
the free Adobe Acrobat Reader software to open this
2010 Fire Museum
Seminar Registration Form.pdf
Download, fill out, and return
this registration form
(with a check payable
to the Fire Museum of Maryland) to:
Fire Museum of Maryland
Lutherville, MD 21093
Want more information,
• the seminar's day-by-day
(as seen above)
• a brief one-page schedule
at-a-glance agenda for the seminar
• one-page map with directions
to the FMM and the seminar's hotel
- Before October 5 -- Make your hotel
reservations at the
Crowne Plaza Hotel -- Baltimore
2004 Greenspring Dr.
Timonium, MD 21093
Ph: (410) 252-7373
Crowne Plaza Baltimore North
Mention the Fire Museum Network Seminar for
the special $89 rate.
- Make Air Reservations to BWI (Baltimore-Washington-Marshall
- Make your SuperShuttle reservation to
get from BWI to Crowne Plaza
advance reservations online at -
the special prepaid rate is $68 round trip for
the first person
and $12 per each additional
- Before September 28
Make a short (no more than three minutes)
CD/DVD/Powerpoint presentation introducing your
museum, and send to to the Fire Museum of Maryland
for inclusing in the Friday Night "show-and-tell."
Still Have Questions?
Contact your seminar hosts at the
Fire Museum of Maryland
1301 York Road
Lutherville, MD 21093