$6,503
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47
backers
0seconds to go
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Fri, June 2 2017 2:00 PM UTC +00:00
The Johns Hopkins HouseBy The Johns Hopkins House
First created
The Johns Hopkins HouseBy The Johns Hopkins House
First created
$6,503
pledged of 298.000 $pledged of 298.000 $ goal
47
backers
0seconds to go
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Fri, June 2 2017 2:00 PM UTC +00:00

About

Help Save Whites Hall: Johns Hopkins' Birthplace

Please Note:  Kickstarter does NOT collect and disburse pledged funds UNLESS the project goal is met!

History

Built in circa 1785, Whites Hall is the birthplace and boyhood home of Johns Hopkins, who went on to found the world-renowned university and hospital that bear his name.  Johns was born at Whites Hall in 1795 and it was his home until he left for Baltimore at the age of 17 to work in his uncle's grocery business.

Whites Hall, now boarded up to prevent vandalism
Whites Hall, now boarded up to prevent vandalism

Whites Hall operated as a 500-acre tobacco plantation, employing slave labor.  However, abiding by the local Society of Friends' (Quakers) decree Johns' father, Samuel Hopkins, emancipated their slaves in 1807.  As a result young 12-year-old Johns was forced to interrupt his studies to work in the fields at the Whites Hall plantation.  This experience is thought to have imbued in him a sense of both hard work and social justice.

Whites Hall: recent photo - boarded up to prevent vandalism
Whites Hall: recent photo - boarded up to prevent vandalism

Whites Hall remained in the Hopkins family until 1910 when it was purchased by the Stewart Fruit Company, and continued operating as a farm until the early 1940s.   From the 1940s until just 12 years ago Whites Hall was a private home.

Whites Hall from the back, showing signs of neglect
Whites Hall from the back, showing signs of neglect

The 13-acre Whites Hall property is now owned by a Maryland developer.  There was consideration given to demolishing the house, however, realizing the historical significance of Whites Hall, our non-profit has been given a chance to purchase and restore this truly remarkable home.

2016 3D drone image of Whites Hall (created by Elevated Element of Owings Mills, MD, in collaboration with Preservation Maryland)
2016 3D drone image of Whites Hall (created by Elevated Element of Owings Mills, MD, in collaboration with Preservation Maryland)

The Current Plan!

The Johns Hopkins House, Inc. non-profit, with the help of all of you, intends to purchase and fully restore Whites Hall.  We have been granted approval by Anne Arundel County to develop a museum at Whites Hall.  This will tell the story of not only this historic property, but also of the life and impact of Johns Hopkins.  (it was his very specific vision, spelled out in his bequests, that, not by accident or chance, resulted in two of the worlds' great institutions)

Whites Hall from the air... note the large front lawn and the 'circular' driveway... and heavily landscaped back yard
Whites Hall from the air... note the large front lawn and the 'circular' driveway... and heavily landscaped back yard

To help support this mission, we have also been given approval by the county to operate an "accessory" restaurant and inn - The Johns Hopkins Inn.  The Inn, part-in-parcel of The Johns Hopkins House, Inc. is intended, in the long term, to create self-sufficiency.  It also is meant to provide further means of opening Whites Hall up to the public.

Whites Hall, as it looked in the 1920s
Whites Hall, as it looked in the 1920s

Our "Preservation Consultant"

We are fortunate enough to have Dennis Pogue as the Preservation Consultant on the Whites Hall project!!  He is the long-time curator and VP for Preservation at the Mount Vernon Estate, Museum & Gardens.

Historic marker, located on Johns Hopkins Road, near the entrance to Whites Hall
Historic marker, located on Johns Hopkins Road, near the entrance to Whites Hall

Dr. Pogue specializes in the study and interpretation of the American colonial and early federal eras, with a particular focus on the plantation culture and society of the Chesapeake Bay region.  Dr. Pogue is arguably the most qualified preservation consultant in the country for the Whites Hall project.  We are, and hopefully you are are, exstatic to have him overseeing the restoration of our project!  

One of the many rooms with fireplace
One of the many rooms with fireplace

... in fact, if we are successful enough in our fundraising, Dr. Pogue will be directing the construction of two replica 18th-century structures on the Whites Hall property: a tobacco barn and a slave cabin (the latter of which he oversaw at Mount Vernon).

Another room, from the original 18th century home
Another room, from the original 18th century home

Whites Hall: the House and Property

Whites Hall sits on 13 acres and is located in Crofton Maryland.  It is 26 miles from Baltimore and 23 miles from Washington D.C.

The main center structure of the house, built in the second half of the 18th century, is Flemish bond brick Georgian and is representative of a house type of which few examples survive in north Anne Arundel County.  The wings were added later on.  There are 6 fireplaces and 2 staircases.  

Another room... another fireplace!
Another room... another fireplace!

In a recent "walk-thru" Whites Hall was found to be structurally sound, in all respects.  Having sat idle for over a decade there is the expected disrepair, but nothing of great significance.

Those present for the walk-thru included:

Dennis Pogue:  former Vice President of Preservation, Mount Vernon Estate, Museum & Gardens

Elizabeth Hughes:  Director and State Historic Preservation Officer, Maryland Historical Trust

Larry Tom:  Planning and Zoning Officer, Anne Arundel County

C. Jane Cox:  Chief of Cultural Resources, Anne Arundel County

Myself, Robert S. Brown

The Kitchen... hub of all activity on the farm!
The Kitchen... hub of all activity on the farm!

 

The Whites Hall purchase contract is for $800,000.  An additional $350,000 will likely be needed to fully restore the house to living condition.  Our fundraising goal will allow for the purchase and restoration of Whites Hall, and development of an onsite museum... and for us to fulfill all of the Rewards.  

However we're hoping to far exceed our stated goal, which would enable us to construct the aforementioned Tobacco Barn and Slave Cabin, and to expand the capacity of the restaurant and inn.  And, in the spirit of the public good, exemplified by Johns Hopkins' bequests, with greater resources our non-profit would commit to exploring more ways for Whites Hall to serve the community.

Note:  Anyone wishing to assist with the Whites Hall project over and above the Rewards listed here, please contact us.  For example, we will have 'giving categories' on the Patron Wall in the Museum of $25,000, $50,000, $100,000, $250,000, $500,000, and $1,000,000.  (and, of course, these gifts would be eligible for a tax deduction)

Risks and challenges

After having worked for over a year on this project, prior to commencing this Kickstarter campaign, I feel we've developed a good sense of the challenges this undertaking faces. Maybe most importantly, we have already received approval from Anne Arundel County to develop a museum at Whites Hall, and, equally important, approval to operate an "accessory" restaurant/inn, in support of the nonprofit goal. The property was already zoned for these things and no variances were needed.

Second, restoration of such a historic property requires a rare expertise. And here I couldn't be more thrilled... having Dennis Pogue as our "Restoration Consultant" is a dream come true. As I wrote elsewhere on this Kickstarter page, Dr. Pogue is arguably the very best person in the entire county to oversee our project (having been the long-time curator and VP of Preservation at George Washington's Mount Vernon Estate!)

In addition, we have the backing and support of the preservation community in Maryland. For this I am grateful.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    "Whites Hall" T-Shirt

    A white T-Shirt, with screen-printing of "Whites Hall: The Johns Hopkins House" on the left breast. A line sketch of Whites Hall will also be included (under "Whites Hall", and above "The Johns Hopkins House")

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    "Whites Hall" Hat

    Dark blue baseball-style hat, screen-printed with: Whites Hall: The Johns Hopkins House (in white)

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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    Lunch for 1 at The Johns Hopkins Inn

    Lunch for 1 person, with a drink, at The Johns Hopkins Inn

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Lunch for 2 at The Johns Hopkins Inn

    Lunch for 2 people, with a drink, at The Johns Hopkins Inn

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    Pledge $70 or more About $70

    Dinner for 2 at The Johns Hopkins Inn

    Dinner for 2, with a drink, at The Johns Hopkins Inn (limit one entrée and one drink per person)

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Set of 2 "Whites Hall" Beer Glasses

    Set of 2 beer glasses, each etched with: "Whites Hall - The Johns Hopkins Inn", and including a line sketch of "Whites Hall".

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    Pledge $125 or more About $125

    Set of 2 "Whites Hall" Copper Mugs

    Set of 2 copper mugs, each etched with: "Whites Hall - The Johns Hopkins Inn", and including a line sketch of "Whites Hall".

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    Custom Engraved Donor Bricks

    These custom-engraved donor bricks will be used to trim the sidewalks leading to the front entrance of The Johns Hopkins Museum and Inn.

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    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    B & B for 2 at The Johns Hopkins Inn

    Be our guest at The Johns Hopkins Inn. Stay the night and enjoy a 3-course delectable breakfast in the morning.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Fundraising Dinner at Whites Hall

    Attend a private $500/plate fundraising dinner at Whites Hall. The evening will include speakers; addressing the topics of historic preservation generally, and the restoration of Whites Hall specifically.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Private Tour of Whites Hall

    Be taken on a private small-group tour of Whites Hall by Dennis Pogue, the long-time curator and VP for Preservation at the Mount Vernon Estate, Museum & Gardens.

    Dr. Pogue specializes in the study and interpretation of the American colonial and early federal eras, with a particular focus on the plantation culture and society of the Chesapeake Bay region.

    These intimate tours will consist of 5 to 15 participants each.

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    Pledge $800 or more About $800

    Use Whites Hall for Private BBQ Event

    Host your own private BBQ event at Whites Hall. The grounds of Whites Hall are ideal for such a purpose. We will provide the grills as well as the hot dogs, hamburgers, potato salad, and soda!

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Private Dinner for 2 at Whites Hall

    Enjoy a private beverage-pairing full-course dinner for 2 in the original main house of Whites Hall. You will be seated in what was Johns Hopkins' family's living room.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Host a Private Party at Whites Hall

    Have exclusive use of Whites Hall to host a private (cocktail) party.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Listing on Patron Wall in Museum

    Your donation will provide you with a prominent listing on the Patron Wall ($1,000 Category), to be located inside the Whites Hall - Hopkins Museum.

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    Pledge $2,500 or more About $2,500

    Use of Whites Hall for Black-Tie Event

    Locate your black-tie fundraising event at Whites Hall. Have exclusive use of the property to further your own fundraising goals.

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    Pledge $3,000 or more About $3,000

    Use of Whites Hall for Alumni Reunion

    Exclusive use of the Whites Hall property for your family or alumni reunion. The perfect location for any Johns Hopkins University-related event!

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    Listing on Patron Wall in Museum

    Your donation will provide you with a prominent listing on the Patron Wall ($5,000 Category), to be located inside the Whites Hall - Hopkins Museum.

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    Pledge $8,500 or more About $8,500

    Use of Whites Hall for Wedding Venue

    Exclusive use of the Whites Hall property for your wedding venue. Includes 5 rooms for two nights, with full breakfast. Also includes tenting, chairs, and tables.

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    Pledge $10,000 About $10,000

    Listing on Patron Wall in Museum

    Your donation will provide you with a prominent listing on the Patron Wall ($10,000 Category), to be located inside the Whites Hall - Hopkins Museum.

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Funding period

- (31 days)