Feed Your Mind This Oktoberfest

Enjoy a day of Mencken at the American Goethe Society of Washington, D.C. with an entertaining lecture by the outstanding Mencken scholar Marion Elizabeth Rodgers and a showing of the film Inherit the Wind (1960).

You won’t have to master your “Die, Der and Das” for Marion’s lecture on “The Impossible H.L. Mencken” will be in English.

Mind and body are inseparable and the corporeal aspects of one’s being won’t be neglected by your hosts as a fine Oktoberfest luncheon with Oktoberfest beer will be served before the showing of the film.

What: Lecture and film showing

When: Saturday, October 26, 2013 10:30 am – 3:30 pm

Where: The Goethe-Institut, 812 Seventh Street, NW, Washington, DC 20001


10:30am —11:00am Coffee / Registration
11:00am —12:00noon Lecture and Discussion
12:15pm — 1:15pm Oktoberfest Luncheon (includes Oktoberfest beer)
1:30pm — 3:30pm Showing of Inherit the Wind (1960), based on the Scopes “Monkey” Trial. (Gene Kelly, as “E. K. Hornbeck”, quite effectively plays the Mencken character.)

Cost: $40.00 (which includes morning coffee, lecture, German lunch, and film).

Please register no later than October 19, 2013.

Please send your reservation (with name, address, and if you would, your email and phone number) and check in the amount of $40 per person payable to the American Goethe Society, to:

American Goethe Society
Oktoberfest 2013
P.O. Box 6632
McLean, Va. 22106-6632

Readings at The H.L. Mencken House, October 12, 2013

Inspired by Mencken and Nathan’s American Mercury magazine, The New Mercury Nonfiction Reading Series comes to Mr Mencken’s home on Hollins Street with readings by Mr Mencken (as incarnated in John Dausch) and contemporary writers Fernando Quijano III of Baltimore, Jennifer Tress of Washington, DC, and, from Leesburg, Virginia, Dave Ungrady.

The readings will be conducted at The H.L. Mencken House, 1524 Hollins St, Baltimore, MD, from 2-4 pm, on Saturday, October 12, 2013

This event is part of Literary Arts Week, a week-long celebration of literary arts programming and writers, poets, and readers, part of Free Fall Baltimore. Created in partnership by CityLit Project, the Greater Baltimore Cultural Alliance, the Maryland State Arts Council and with the participation of the William G. Baker, Jr. Memorial Fund.

Visit The Friends at the Baltimore Book Festival 2013


The Friends are at the Baltimore Book Festival on the west side of the Washington Monument directly across from the Food For Thought stage.

The Friends' Booth at The Baltimore Book Festival

Our Booth at BBF 2013

Stop by and introduce yourselves. Add to your library of books by and about Mr Mencken.

Take advantage of our Book Festival Special: Become a members of both The Friends of the H. L. Mencken House and the Mencken Society and save $20! (Memberships may also be purchased individually at the regular prices.)

The Book Festival is at Mt. Vernon Place, 600 North Charles St; its hours are:
Friday, Sept. 27, 12-8
Saturday, Sept. 28, 12-8
Sunday, Sept. 29, 12-7

Happy 133rd, Mr Mencken!


Join the Friends in celebrating Mr Mencken’s 133rd birthday at his house on 1524 Hollins St on Sunday, September 8, 2013 from 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM.

H. L. Mencken was born September 12, 1880 and we are celebrating his birthday a few days early to coincide with Mencken Weekend. The house and garden will be open and light fare will be served. Beer and wine will be available for a modest amount. The highlight of the occasion will be cake (with candles, though not 133 of them) served in his beloved garden.

If you plan to attend the birthday celebration, you may also consider attending the Mencken Day celebration at the Enoch Pratt Free Library the day before, on Saturday, September 7, 2013.

What: Mencken Birthday Celebration
Where: 1524 Hollins St, Baltimore, MD
When: Sunday, September 8, 2013 from 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM

Marion Rodgers: Mencken On The Red Scare

Marion Elizabeth Rodgers will give a talk on Mencken’s writings about “The Red Scare.”

Where: Room 618 (Main Reading Room of the Bar Library)
Mitchell Courthouse
100 North Calvert Street
Baltimore, MD

When: April 30, 2013 (Tue), 5:00 p.m
Wine & cheese reception immediately following.

The event is free but R.S.V.P. to 410-727-0280 or reply by e-mail to jwbennett@barlib.org

Please consider making a voluntary contribution to the Bar Library’s Honorable Harry A. Cole Self-Help Center.

Let An Expert Show You The Mencken House

Tour the Mencken House on Saturday, April 20, 2013 with Marion Elizabeth Rodgers as part of Johns Hopkins’ Odyssey Program. The course fee is $30 for either the morning or afternoon tour. There is a $3 entrance donation at the door to benefit the Friends of the H. L. Mencken House.

Section 01 (morning): 10 a.m.-noon
Section 02 (afternoon): 1-3 p.m.

Marion Rodgers edited H. L. Mencken: Prejudices: The Complete Series (2010) for the Library of America. Her other books on H. L. Mencken are Mencken: The American Iconoclast (2007), The Impossible H L. Mencken (1991), and Mencken and Sara: A Life in Letters (1987).

More details about the tour are at Odyssey’s website (scroll down).

2013 Mencken Graveside Memorial Service

Over twenty people attended the Eighth Mencken Memorial Grave Side Service conducted by Oleg Panczenko. It was a bright, sunny day and the temperature was in the mid-to high thirties. The days before had been cold, with temperatures in the twenties, and there was a worry that few people would want to come on a cold day. There were small patches of snow here and there but the ground was mostly clear.

Mr Panczenko briefly spoke on “Do We Still Value Liberty?” “That Americans complacently endure insults and indignities when they travel by air speaks louder than words.” He also noted that ”Americans today are less aware of the ongoing diminishment of their liberties even though the means of dispersing news are far superior now to the newspapers, radio and newsreels of Mencken’s time.” The full text of his remarks can be read here.

After the brief ceremony a dozen people retired to Spirits West Country Club, 2601 Wilkens Ave. for beer, food, and good conversation. [OP]

Photographs by Stacy Spaulding.

The 2013 Mencken Graveside Memorial Service

The eighth Mencken Graveside Memorial Service will again be conducted by Oleg Panczenko at Mr Mencken’s grave at Loudon Park.

When: Sunday, January 27, 2013 at 2:00 PM

Where: Mencken Family Gravesite, Loudon Park Cemetery, 3620 Wilkens Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21229

Mr Mencken’s grave is in Lot W 224 North Half, Space 4, N 39° 16.693′ W 76° 40.683′ (39.278217°, -76.678050°). Directional signs will be posted.

Click here for a map.

After the brief memorial service attendees are invited to the Spirits West Country Club, 2601 Wilkens Avenue (cor Millington Ave), Baltimore, MD 21223, not far from St Benedict’s Church.