Tartan Day, celebrate all things Scottish, visit the Brownlee House at HAM

Photo by Larry Pennington

Today is Tartan Day, designated to celebrate the contributions of Scots everywhere.

One of Little Rock’s oldest structures, the Brownlee House was built by a Scotsman.  The Brownlee House is one of the restored structures at Historic Arkansas Museum.

Robert Brownlee built this Federal style brick house in the late 1840s for his brother and sister-in-law. A Scottish stonemason, Brownlee came to Little Rock in 1837 to help build the State House (now the Old State House Museum). He pursued a number of careers before leaving for California in the 1849 Gold Rush. From the late 1840s through 1852, the home’s residents were James and Isabelle Brownlee and Tabby, a woman enslaved by James Brownlee.

Brownlee had the wooden mantels in the parlor and bedroom marbleized, a popular decorative art of the time. The home’s furnishings reflect the mid-19th century.

This house is a project of The National Society of the Colonial Dames of America in the State of Arkansas.

Historic Arkansas Museum is open seven days a week.  The galleries are free, but the tours of the historic structures have a nominal fee.  It is an agency of the Department of Arkansas Heritage.

Advertisements

A Night at the Museum: Raiders of the Lost Arkansas – tonight at the Old State House Museum

Get ready for the next Night at the Museum on Thursday, April 4,  from 6-9 pm! This month’s theme is “Raiders of the Lost Arkansas!”

Nights at the Museum is an event for ages 21+ that offers attendees a chance to enjoy games and activities, libations, and a fun new way to interact with history. Nights at the Museum will take place on the first Thursday of each month seasonally, March-October, on the iconic front lawn of the museum.

Nights at the Museum is hosted by the Arkansas State House Society, and all proceeds will benefit the museum’s educational programs.

Admission is $5; food and beverages will be available for purchase at the event. Tickets may be purchased in advance HERE or at the gate.

The museum can validate parking at the DoubleTree Hotel; all metered parking downtown is free after 6 pm.

Women Making History – Louise Loughborough

Louise Loughborough was the first woman to serve on the Little Rock Planning Commission.  Not only was the she first woman to serve on this body, she was the first to serve on any City commission other than the Board of Censors or Library Board.

Born Louisa Watkins Wright in Little Rock 1881, her ancestors included many early Arkansas leaders including Little Rock Mayor David Fulton, who had been born in Ireland.

In 1935, Loughborough was appointed to the Little Rock Planning Commission, and it was in this role that she first heard about the plan to condemn the half-block of houses that she had grown up admiring on Cumberland and East Third streets. Although the neighborhood had fallen on hard times, becoming a red-light district and slum, Loughborough feared the loss of several historic structures, including the Hinderliter House, the oldest building in Little Rock and thought to be Arkansas’s last territorial capitol. She mobilized a group of civic leaders to save these buildings. She enlisted the aid of prominent architect Max Mayer and coined the term “town of three capitols” to try to capture the imagination of potential supporters, grouping the “Territorial Capitol” with the Old State House and the State Capitol.

The Arkansas Territorial Restoration opened on July 19, 1941. The project was the first Arkansas agency committed to both the restoration of structures and the interpretation of their history, and it served as a model and inspiration for historic preservation in the state. Around the same time, she was a moving force behind the creation of a museum at the Old State House as well.  Today both Historic Arkansas Museum (as the Territorial Restoration is now known) and the Old State House Museum are agencies of the Department of Arkansas Heritage.

As founding Chairman of the Arkansas Territorial Restoration Commission, Louise Loughborough provided daily direction for the museum house complex through the first twenty years of its existence. She died in Little Rock on December 10, 1962 and was buried at Mount Holly Cemetery.

Celebrate National Quilting Day on March 16 at Historic Arkansas Museum

On Saturday, March 16, Celebrate National Quilting Day at the museum with the Arkansas Quilters Guild. There will be several quilters demonstrating basic quilting techniques and working together to create a twin size quilt to donate to Dorcas House Women & Children’s Shelter. This will run from 10am to 4pm.

Quilts in the Museum Store
The museum just got in several new wall quilts by Arkansas fiber artist Barbara Carlson. Carlson’s bright and whimsical wall quilts have been featured in museums and shows across the country. Her quilting work is non-traditional, utilizing hand-painted fabrics, beads, feathers, upholstery fabrics and other materials in her pieces. Come take a look — and maybe take one home!

Tonight – Oxford American welcomes Peter Bernstein, Larry Goldings & Bill Stewart Trio

Image result for PETER BERNSTEIN, LARRY GOLDINGS & BILL STEWART TRIOThe Oxford American welcomes the Peter Bernstein, Larry Goldings & Bill Stewart Trio to Little Rock! This is the fifth and final show in their 2018-19 Jazz Series. Doors open at 6:00 PM, with dinner and drinks available for purchase at that time.

The series is made possible in part by presenting sponsor UCA College of Fine Arts & Communication.

Additional season partners include Stella Boyle Smith Trust, Chris & Jo Harkins, J. Mark & Christy Davis, EVO Business Environments, Downtown Little Rock Partnership, Stacy Hamilton of Pulaski Heights Realty, Margaret Ferguson Pope, Arkansas Arts Council, Department of Arkansas Heritage, Mosaic Templars Cultural Center, Capital Hotel, Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, Rosen Music Company, and Steinway Piano Gallery of Little Rock.

Tickets are $30 (General Admission), $44 (Reserved), and $46 (Premium Reserved). Please take a look at this very important ticketing and seating information before purchasing your tickets (view reserved seating chart). Full season ticket pricing and options are also available in a consolidated format, here.


Guitarist Peter Bernstein, organist Larry Goldings, and drummer Bill Stewart make up one of the best organ jazz trios of the past two decades. The respect the musicians have for one another comes through in the subtle and intricate manner of their musical conversation on stage. Indeed, you can hear them listening to each other. Drawing mainly on jazz standards, and a few original pieces, they re-imagine the organ jazz trio in a quiet, sensual, and grooving presentation.

All members of the Young Lion jazz movement at the close of the 20th century, and now all firmly established jazz stars, this group has been together for twenty-five years, making multiple recordings that display their distinctive sound, whether exploring the depths of jazz standards, or playing their original compositions. Jazz enthusiasts recognize the trio for charting new ground with hard-swinging, yet thoughtful music. Peter’s warm, feather-light touch and fluid improvisation with Larry Goldings’s warm hum, alongside Bill Stewart’s polyrhythmic and melodic focus, create a vivid combination of synergistic playing. With the trio’s extensive use of the music’s dynamic possibilities, the passion and joy of this amazingly versatile instrumental lineup is there for all to hear.

 

Women Making History: Anne Bartley

In 1976, Anne Bartley was sworn in as the first director of what was then known as the Department of Arkansas Natural and Cultural Heritage.  In that capacity, she was the first woman to serve in an Arkansas Governor’s cabinet.  She had encouraged Governor David Pryor to propose establishing the department and then had lobbied the Arkansas General Assembly to create it.  (Her oath of office was administered by the first woman on the Arkansas Supreme Court, Justice Elsijane Trimble Roy.)

Since 1968, Bartley had been involved in historic preservation, promotion of the arts, and civic engagement.   In 1979, Bartley was asked to establish a Washington Office for the state of Arkanas.  She later was involved in founding the Threshold Foundation (1981), the Funders’ Committee for Citizen Participation (1983), the Forum Institute for Voter Participation (1986), the Faith and Politics Institute (1991), Vote Now ’92 and ’94, America Coming Together (2004), Democracy Alliance (2004), America Votes (2005), and, currently, the Committee on States.

Some of the boards she has served on have been the New World Foundation, the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation, and the Rockefeller Family Fund. She is currently on the boards of the Bauman Family Foundation, Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, America Votes, and on the Advisory Councils for Project New West and TAI SOPHIA.

Women Making History: Judge Elsijane Trimble Roy

Elsijane Trimble Roy was born the daughter of a judge. At an early age, she knew she wanted to be an attorney.  She would eventually become not only the third female to graduate from the University of Arkansas Law School, but the first female circuit court judge in Arkansas, the first female on the Arkansas Supreme Court, and the first female Federal judge from Arkansas.

She was also the first woman in the United States to follow her father as federal judge.  She presided in the same courtroom where her father had served for 20 years. She retired in 1999 after 21 years on the federal bench.

Judge Roy has received many awards and honors including being selected Woman of the Year by the Business and Professional Woman’s Club in 1969, Arkansas Democrat Woman of the Year in 1976, an honor that her mother also received, and Outstanding Appellate Judge of 1976-1977 by the Arkansas Trial Lawyers Association.

While she was on the Arkansas Supreme Court (to which she had been appointed by Governor David Pryor), she administered the oath of office to Anne Bartley to lead the Department of Arkansas Natural and Cultural Heritage.  Ms. Bartley became the first woman in an Arkansas Governor’s cabinet.  In 1977, President Jimmy Carter appointed her to the federal bench to succeed Judge Oren Harris.