Hope House, Talbot County, Maryland by Ellie Altman, Executive Director

On Saturday, November 1, the Arboretum’s Leon Andrus Society held its annual fall gathering at Board President Peter Stifel’s home, Hope House, on the Miles River, a stunning, clear fall day–sweater weather. Guests gathered in the circular drive until all 30+ had arrived and then took an hour ride around the perimeter of the property on a hay wagon. The event was the first “Tree Walk and Cocktails.” The highlight of the tour was Peter’s own ‘Champion Trees,’ a lob lolly pine and a scarlet oak, the former a Talbot County ‘Champion,’ and the latter a state ‘Champion.’ Upon returning to the house, the tour continued around the gardens and sheep pasture to the shores of the Miles. Our gracious host served food and cocktails on the porch of Hope House until dark fell. An afternoon spent enjoying nature’s wonders gave the crowd a hearty appetite. The shrimp with Peter’s mother’s recipe for Ft. Henry sauce quickly disappeared.

The Arboretum was established in 1980 with the generous donation from its founding benefactor, Leon Asa ‘Andy’ Andrus. Born in Horsehead, New York, in 1887, Mr. Andrus led a full life, including a successful career on Wall Street, and eventually settled on the shores of the Wye River. His adventuresome spirit opened many doors. He took flying lessons with Charles Lindbergh; considered J. Ogden Armour, Andrew Mellon, and J.B. Duke his friends; presented a wedding gift to Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip on behalf of Corning Glass; purchased the Queen Anne’s Record-Observer; promoted the construction of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge; and tended five ‘Champion Trees’ on his Wye River farm. After his death in 1989 at the age of 101, a portion of Mr. Andrus’s estate was bequeathed to establish the Andrus Endowment for Adkins Arboretum.

The Leon Andrus Society was founded to celebrate the Arboretum’s first benefactor. The Society confers recognition to its members for generosity and commitment to supporting the Arboretum’s annual operating fund. Membership in the Leon Andrus Society is open to all with an annual gift of $1,000 or more, and benefits, for one year, two adults. Benefits include: free admission, subscription to the Arboretum’s newsletter, Native Seed, and all the benefits of a basic membership, as well as an invitation to the annual Leon Andrus Society Event and special recognition in the Arboretum’s publications and other media.

To become a Leon Andrus Society member, visit http://www.adkinsarboretum.org/members.html

It is the generosity of The Leon Andrus Society that helps sustain the Arboretum’s education programs. We are pleased to pay tribute to The Society members:

Ms. Lea Brooks
Mr. and Mrs. David Bryan
Mr. and Mrs. James Campbell
Mr. and Mrs. B. Vance Carmean
Ms. Jane De Briyn
Mr. and Mrs. Harry Duffey, III
Mr. and Mrs. John Fischer
Mr. and Mrs. Richard Granville
Mr. and Mrs. Alan Griffin
Mr. John Harper, III and Mrs. Karen Roth
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas E. Hill
Mr. and Mrs. Allan Housley
Mrs. Hilda Latta
Ms. Virginia Paca
Dr. Robert Paca
Dr. Barbara Paca and Mr. Phillip Logan
Mr. and Mrs. John Root
Mr. and Mrs. Edmund Stanley
Dr. Peter Stifel
Mr. and Mrs. Peter Van Dyke
Ms. JoAnne Welsh

The event was recorded through the lens of Board Trustee Alicia Siegrist’s camera.

Board President, Peter Stifel entertains from the stump of an Osage orage tree where he explains the attributes of the wood of ginkgos and Osage oranges.
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