January 31, 2011

‘Privileged Pursuits: Cultural Refinement in Early Baltimore’

An engraving from ‘The Gamut and Time-table, in Verse: For the Instruction of Children,’ London, ca. 1820. George Peabody Library Rare Book Collection.

In the early 1800s, music, dance, literature, fine art and civility were considered part of a complete education. Homewood Museum’s fifth annual student-curated focus show explores how young Baltimoreans were introduced to these and other cultural refinements through parental instruction, printed materials, tutors and specialized schools.

Evidence has been drawn from Carroll family correspondence, rare books and other period items on display. An accompanying display on the main level of the Milton S. Eisenhower Library features objects from the Johns Hopkins Sheridan Libraries.

Privileged Pursuits: Cultural Refinement in Early Baltimore is organized by Catherine Rogers Arthur, Homewood Museum director and curator, and students enrolled in her fall 2010 Introduction to Material Culture course in the Krieger School’s Museums and Society Program. A series of related events, which run through April, begin with this week’s opening reception. See Special Events.