Need a Break from Inflatable Santas and Flashing Displays? An Evening Sojourn at Homewood House May Be the Answer.

One magical night each year, visitors have the opportunity to step back in time at Homewood Museum on the Johns Hopkins University campus, experiencing the festive holiday spirit of life as it was lived by the affluent Charles Carroll family in the early 1800s.

The Palladian-style, Federal-era mansion was built for Charles Carroll of Homewood (son of Charles Carroll of Carrollton, a signer of the Declaration of Independence), his wife, Harriet Chew Carrollton, and their five children, and the family used it as their country home during the first quarter of the 19th century.

At the Homewood by Candlelight open house on Dec. 3 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., visitors may tour the furnished period rooms festooned with boxwood and garlands, enjoy seasonal refreshments in the wine cellar and do some holiday shopping in the gift shop.

Homewood House remained in the Carroll family until 1838, when it was sold to wealthy Baltimore merchant William Wyman. In the early 1900s, the rapidly growing Johns Hopkins University moved from downtown to the former site of the estate, taking the house’s moniker as the name of its new campus. Today a National Historic Landmark, Homewood House served as the architectural inspiration for the many university buildings that sprang up around it. 

Through the years, the mansion has been used as a private residence, a boys’ school (predecessor to the Gilman School), a university faculty club, an administration building and now, a museum.

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Homewood by Candlelight takes place Dec. 3, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. For tickets and information, visit Museums.JHU.edu/calendar.php.