Reisterstown Main Street Working To Preserve Local History One Photo At A Time


REISTERSTOWN -Local history is fading to memory throughout the country as records become digital and the youngest generations forget life before smartphones and Wikipedia.

In an effort to preserve what has made Reisterstown special over the past 150 years, Reisterstown Main Street has been collecting artifacts from around the local community.

Crystal Micriotti, The Reisterstown Main Street Manager, has been accepting donations from residents to preserve, catalog, and eventually display artifacts depicting the town's history. 

She says the outpouring of support and donations has been overwhelming.

"People are just donating neat stuff. And I'm sitting here going, okay, how do I make sense of all this? What do I frame? What do I scan? What do I protect?" Micriotti contemplated.

Local history has always been a focus for Reisterstown Main Street. The welcome center building (Beckley House) sits on a plot of land known as "Reister's Desire," a small property John Reister gave to his daughter in the 1760s. Adjacent to the welcome center is the eponymously named Reister's Daughter cafe. Directly behind the welcome center sits a pocket park containing bricks engraved with the name of notable residents.

For Micriotti, the park has extra significance and influenced the decision to turn the building into a welcome center.

"My name is out there; my husband's grandparents' names are out there. People grew to love that park, and on this tract of land, it just made sense to turn this into a welcome center," Micriotti said.

Among the collection of donations sits many crucial links to Reisterstown's past:

(Center red book) - A 50th class reunion book for the Franklin High School class of 1937. (Left and center photos) - Senior pictures from the early 1900s (Right photo) - A portrait of a Franklin High School teacher Circa ~1910
A pair of spoons which were found beneath the floor boards of the Beckley House during renovation.
Crystal Micriotti holds a 1941 flag from Franklin High School

Micriotti and Reisterstown Main Street plan to create a mini-museum in the Beckley house (welcome center) so residents can learn about their town's history. By 2023, Micriotti plans to cover the walls in historical paintings and photos, along with a rotating exhibit that will cover a specific part of history, such as the Reisterstown Volunteer Fire Company or Franklin High School.

Micriotti and Reisterstown Main Street are still accepting donations of scrapbooks, old photos, artifacts, and more. If you have any unneeded pieces of Reisterstown history, they can find a home in the Beckley House. 

According to Micriotti, at the end of the day, the goal of the mini museum is to inform residents about their history and why it is worth protecting. 

“if we can get people excited about Reisterstown history in here, even just a little bit, then they'll have a better understanding of our town’s rich past.”

If you would like to support Reisterstown Main Street in its efforts to preserve Reisterstown history, you can email

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This sounds like a great project.  I would love to see photos from the 1940's - 1970's before all the development began.  Some maps of the are in the mid 20th century would be interesting as well. 

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