Hog Yard Heritage Days

Hog Yard Heritage Days 2019-09-18T11:05:16-04:00

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Hog Yard Heritage Days is a two-day event commemorating the preservation of Wheatley Community House, and the 235th Anniversary of Wheatley Methodist Church (1784). These historic buildings sit on a tract of land described, in Dorchester County land records, as “Hog Yard”. The property is located at 5802 Wheatley Church Road, Rhodesdale (just off MD 313 two miles south of Eldorado and two miles north of Sharptown). Both buildings are listed on Fork District Map found in the 1877 Lake, Griffing, and Stevenson atlas as “School No. 4” and ME Church”.

The community house was originally a Dorchester County one room school. The Dorchester County Board of Education sold the building to Wheatley church for five dollars, just prior to its closing in the spring of 1936. Serving as a “community house” since church took ownership, it has seen two structural changes (late 1930’s and mid-1950’s).

The church, currently under restoration was built 1784 for the purpose of being a Methodist church and has served continuously, as its original intent – to be a Methodist Church. Through its 235 years history, the only change of the structural shape has been the addition of a recessed pulpit (late 19th century). Recently members set out to restore the mid-20th century features, in time for the upcoming 235th anniversary. The work was halted when serious deterioration of 18th century structures and the surprise of colonial style were found.

Celebratory events will begin 8 AM Saturday as a day of “fun and learn” featuring: exhibits of various period items (blacksmith, broom making, period cars, etc), music by John Simpson of Milton Delaware and Joan Wheatley, Pastor Mulholland in a dunking booth, corn hole, writing with quill and ink, and home baked goodies. At 11 am there will be a service to dedicate the recently restored community house. The North Dorchester High School band will provide special selections for this service.

Sunday’s events will include a homecoming service, at 11am with a picnic lunch and visitation following immediately. The celebratory events will conclude, at 2 pm, with a Gospel Sing featuring the Timmons Family of Pittsville. Visiting pastors, who previously served the church, will be recognized; and the church’s historical significance will be presented.

Tours, with history of the buildings, will be provided both days. Maryland’s Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford is confirmed to attend the Sunday morning service and remain for lunch to visit with congregation. All are invited to enjoy portions of early American culture, once experienced within this tranquil setting, as well as, enjoying food, good music and visiting with others.

• Exhibits of period related items: Antique cars, Vintage Hand Made Shad Boat, Black smith, vintage washing machines & kitchen items, broom maker, engines/motors; the Jelly Lady
• Music featuring John Simpson of Equinox Productions, Joan Wheatley and other local talent will be featured throughout the day
• Home baked goodies, soda, bottled water, various snack foods
• Fun activities: Pastor Don in a dunking booth, corn hole game, quill & ink calligraphy writing, tours of historic buildings, visitation within our tranquil setting
11am: Community House Dedication Service; Special selections are to be provided by the North Dorchester High School band. Lunch will be available following the service.

11am: Homecoming Service; lunch following the service
2pm: Gospel Sing (Timmons Family); recognition of previous serving pastors, presentation of church history. This is planned as an informal ending of our special celebratory event; snacks and drinks will be available
Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford is confirmed to attend the morning service and remain for lunch to visit with attendees.

Location: 5802 Wheatley Church Road, Rhodesdale 21659

Hog Yard Heritage Days