Friends celebrate Mencken’s birthday

The Friends invite you to a party celebrating the 132nd anniversary of the birth of H.L. Mencken. The Friends will celebrate with an open house at 1524 Hollins St. from noon until 6 p.m. Cakes, treats, refreshments, soda, water and beer ($3) will be available. Anyone signing up for a Friends of the Mencken House membership ($40) will receive a copy of The Ombibulous Mr. Mencken by Bud Johns.

Volunteer inventories garden tiles

The Friends would like to thank Justus Heger for volunteering to photograph and inventory the garden tiles. Heger became interested in the tiles after visiting 1524 Hollins St. during the annual Friends’ open house, volunteering on the spot to photograph and help preserve the tiles. “It’s part of Mencken’s personality, the tiles are everywhere,” Heger said. Heger has taken many photos of the tiles and sent them to a historical conservator in Harrisburg, Pa., for advice on conservation. More tiles will be revealed, he said, when garden growth shrinks during winter weather.

Friends work with city to secure removal of damaged Bradford Pear

The Friends hope to work with the city to secure the removal of the Bradford Pear tree damaged during derecho storm June 29, 2012. Friends vice president Phil Hildebrandt has placed several calls to the General Services department of Baltimore City to request removal. A significant part of the tree is still standing and leans towards the garden.

Mencken Day Weekend September 8-9, 2012

Celebrate Mencken Day September 8, 2012 at the Enoch Pratt Free Library. The Mencken Society has its annual meeting at 10:15 AM with guest lecturer H George Hahn speaking on “The Campus Trials of Mencken’s Satire”. The Pratt’s Mencken Memorial lecture at 2:30 PM will be given by Dr Richard Schrader who will present “The Scopes Trial: How  the Letter Kills”.

In conjunction with the Mencken Day Celebration the Friends of the H L Mencken House will have the Mencken House open for Mr Mencken’s birthday on Sunday, September 9, from noon until 6PM. Come and enjoy cake, soft drinks and beer with us. Those who cannot attend the birthday party on Sunday but who would like to tour the house (sans treats) on Saturday, September 8, may make arrangements by emailing tours@menckenhouse.org.

 

Friends Exhibit at German Festival

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From left: Phil Hildebrandt, Stacy Spaulding, and Richard Pickens.

Members of the board of the Friends of the H.L. Mencken House hoist steins in memory of the Sage of Baltimore. The Friends exhibit a large selection of Mencken’s books and pictures of his home at the annual German Festival, held July 28 and 29 at the Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium. H. L. Mencken’s paternal grandfather, Burkhardt Ludwig Mencken, emigrated to the United States in 1848. HLM’s father, August, born in Baltimore in 1854, married Anna Margaret Abhau, also a first generation American. Mencken had relatives in Oldenburg, Wiesbaden, Leipzig, Koblenz, Darmstadt, Frankfurt and Heidelberg.

Mr Mencken On His House

The charm of getting home, as I see it, is the charm of getting back to what is inextricably my own–to things familiar and long loved,to things that belong to me and none other. I have lived in one house in Baltimore for nearly forty-five years. It has changes in that time, as I have–but somehow it still remains the same. No conceivable decorator’s masterpiece could give me the same ease. It is as much a part of me as my two hands. If I had to leave it I’d be as certainly crippled as if I lost a leg. (“On Living In Baltimore”, Sun (E), 1925-02-16; also in James T. Farrell, Ed. Prejudices, A Selection (Johns Hopkins University Press, 1996), p. 206)