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Media Advisory

Office of News and Information
Johns Hopkins University
3003 N. Charles Street, Suite 100
Baltimore, Maryland 21218-3843
Phone: (410) 516-7160 | Fax (410) 516-5251

January 15, 2003
To: Reporters, editors, producers From: Amy Cowles | (410) 516-7160 | amycowles@jhu.edu
What: Opening of show on historic lighting technology at Homewood House Museum
When: Thursday, Jan. 16, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.;
free and open to the public
News media tours available by arrangement
Where: Homewood House Museum
The Johns Hopkins University
3400 N. Charles St.
Baltimore, Md. 21218

For the next 10 weeks, the search to capture light in the late 18th and early 19th century will be examined in O Say Can You See? Revolutions in Lighting Technology, Homewood House Museum's 2003 focus show opening with a free reception at 5 p.m. on Thursday. Light was a valued commodity in the early 19th century, when Charles Carroll Jr. was building and furnishing Homewood, his family's splendid five-part Federal-style house. The siting and plan for what is now Homewood House Museum acknowledge the importance of daylight, and interiors of houses of the day were perhaps influenced more by light than by any other factor: Paint colors, furniture finishes, hardware, mirrors, gilt frames, cut glass and silver objects were all designed and chosen for their ability to reflect limited light.

Included in the exhibit are several rare Argand lamps from R.& A. Campbell, a retailer that flourished in Baltimore from 1835-1855. These oil-and-wick lamps were gilded and adorned with prisms to reflect every bit of light. Earlier innovations on display include lamps fueled by lard or bull rushes that were dipped in fat and burned.

The exhibit continues through March 30; lectures, lighting demonstrations and gallery talks will help illuminate the subject. The museum is open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, and noon to 4 p.m. Sundays. After opening night, admission is $6 for adults, $5 for seniors and $3 for students. For more information, call the museum at 410-516-5589 or visit the museum Web site, www.jhu.edu/historichouses. Members of the media may contact curator Catherine Rogers Arthur at 410-516-8647 or crarthur@jhu.edu.

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