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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Columbia Archives celebrates 50th anniversary of land purchases for Columbia

      In the early 1960's Howard County was mostly a rural area that had remained relatively unchanged since it was founded over 100 years before.  The fact that it was between two metropolitan areas seemed to have little impact on life in Howard County.  This rural pastoral life was about to change.
      Starting in the Fall of 1962 and extending into the Summer of 1963 the Rouse Company in partnership with Connecticut General began to acquire property through the Community Research and Development Corporation, a precursor to Howard Research and Development, to begin the development of Columbia.   Since these purchases had to be done in a manner that didn't make apparent what was happening and raise the price of the land the purchases were made by different people. The map above shows some of those acquired tracts.

   The pictures above show a large tract of land purchased from Robert Moxley and others off of what today is Cedar Lane.
    Jim Rouse had concerns that American cities of the 1950's and early 1960's would be deteriorating as the development of suburbs drew people away for the cities.  He saw the suburban development as sterile.  In this letter to the CEO of the Federated Department Stores he expressed these thoughts.  
    The Columbia Archives will have an exhibit of this story of land acquisition at the Howard County Fair on August 7th from 10 am to 4 pm.  This will be part of the "Hands on History Day" at the Fair.  Others exhibiting that day are Weavers Guild of Greater Baltimore, Historic Ellicott City, Inc., Preservation Howard County, Chesapeake Region Lace Guild, Howard County Historic Society, Friends of the Patapsco Female Institute, Inc., B & O Railroad Museum: Ellicott City Station, Friends of Whipps Cemetery, Maryland National Road Association, Howard County Living Farm Heritage Museum, Howard County Recreation and Parks Heritage Sites and Preservation and Conservation Programs, Coalition to Protect Maryland Burial Sites, and Benjamin Banneker Historical Park and Museum.

   Willie Nelson sums up the controversy with Lance Armstrong the best.  Here is his quote:
"I think it is just terrible how everyone has treated Lance Armstrong, especially after what he achieved--winning seven Tour de France races while on drugs. When I was on drugs, I couldn't even find my bike."

1 comment:

Harry Schwarz said...

Thanks for sharing this, Duane. Information like this makes HoCoConnect invaluable. Sounds like August 7 is the day to go.