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“Lanternin A Poet’s Garden”
APerformance of the Works of Danske Dandridge
Shepherdstown War Memorial Building
102 E. German Street, Shepherdstown, WV
Monday, March 21
Contact: Curt Mason ForImmediate Release
Phone: 304.724.7008 Email: cmasonwhf@...
6:00 a.m. February 27, 2010
SHEPHERDSTOWN, WV, February 27, 2011. TheJefferson County Historical Society (jeffersonhistoricalwv.org), the Men's Clubof Shepherdstown (smc25443.org/joomla/) and the Historic ShepherdstownCommission (historicshepherdstown.com/) are pleased to announce that the firstevent in the 2011 Historic Speaker Series will take place at the Men’s Club onMonday, March 21. The programentitled "Lantern in a Poet's Garden" will be open to the public andwill begin with a reception at 6 p.m. followed by a live performance by TerryTucker and ensemble beginning at 7 p.m. celebrating the poems of Shepherdstownhistorian and author Caroline “Danske” Bedinger Dandridge and her cousin DanielBedinger Lucas.
The Bedinger family has deep roots in JeffersonCounty. Daniel, born in 1836, was a lawyer who served, at different times, as ajudge and state legislator. Caroline "Danske" Dandridge wasan American poet, historian and garden writer. Born on November 19, 1854 in Copenhagen, Denmark, she was the daughter of Caroline L.Bedinger and Henry Bedinger III, the United States' firstambassador to Denmark. The family moved to the Flushing, NY in 1857 and twoyears later to Shepherdstown, Virginia, whereher mother had purchased an estate called "Poplar Grove” nearMorgan Grove Park. Also known as the Morgan-Bedinger-Dandridgehouse, the original building was built circa 1745by Richard Morgan and became known as the "Back Building.” In 1803 DanielMorgan expanded the house with a two-story brick structure, known as the"Great House.” In 1859,Caroline Bedinger, by then a widow, built what is now the main portion of thehouse. Here the family caredfor wounded soldiers during the Battleof Antietam. In 1877, Danske married Stephen Dandridge, renaming the home“Rosebrake.”
As a child,Danske wrote poetry and aspired to be a writer, but she put her writing asidefor several years before picking it up again in 1883. Her first published poemwas included in Godey's “Lady'sBook” in 1885; in March 1888 Putnam’spublished her first book of poems, "Joy and Other Poems." In the late1890s, she turned to writing garden articles for "Garden and Forest"and later wrote works of history. She died at home in Shepherdstown, West Virginia on June 3, 1914.
“Lantern in a Poet’s Garden” was a project initiated almost a decadeago by long-time Shepherdstown resident Terry Tucker. Stimulated by the many poems ofDanske and Daniel, Tucker wrote music to those poems that spoke to her in anintimate way. As noted by JudyJenner in her review of the “Lantern” CD, published in the Chronicle onNovember 26, 2010: ‘Early on she felt acommon bond with Danske, a love of nature that goes beyond the garden and intothe woods of fairies and sunlight mystically streaming patterns aroundgreat-limbed trees. A native of Webster County, West Virginia, Tucker similarlyspun her own childhood dreams. She studied classical music at Wesleyan Collegein Buckhannon and has traveled far and wide for a variety of musicalexperiences, as a lyricist, composer and performer.”
These songs are written in ninedifferent keys and just about as many major as minor voices. Tucker plays thepiano and sings throughout the performance, joined by a talented group ofmusicians: Ardyth Gilbertson, vocalist; cello player and bassist Ralph Gordon;flutist Betty Jo Rockwell; guitarist Todd Coyle; Brian Ellsworth on the Frenchhorn; Anders Henricksson playing trumpet, and Bill McCullen on the trombone.. For an evening you’ll always remember,please join us “In a Poet’s Garden” on Monday, March 21.