Steppingstone Farm Museum preserves and interprets the rural heritage of Harford County.
Steppingstone museum is a private, not for profit museum which preserves and demonstrates the rural arts and crafts of the 1880-1920 period in Harford County. The Steppingstone collection is comprised of domestic arts, skilled trades tools. and farm implements. The artifacts in each category were used by skilled specialists whose talents are scarce in our present urban and industrial society. Our founder wished us to represent the “last rural generation”- people who lived off the land and crafted their livelihoods by hand.
The purpose of the collections at Steppingstone is the preservation and study of the material culture of Harford County’s last rural generation, as well as the exhibition and demonstrated use of the artifacts. The museum was established for the education of the younger generation and continues to strive to achieve this goal through a variety of guided tours and craft workshop programs.
- Visitors can spend the afternoon touring the sites of a once working Harford County farm. The farmhouse, furnished as a turn-of-the-century home, charms the visitor as a guide invites you to share the daily life of the period. Tours include the formal sitting room, library and sewing rooms, and kitchen with its wood burning stove and ice box. The stone farmhouse is furnished with antiques from the 1880-1920 time period. Displays of quilts, lacework, dolls, toys, books, and other items complete this collection.
- The nearby artisan workshops and display barn hold exhibits which share the industries and implements of the farm family. Visitors are encouraged to discuss the craft skills with the volunteers. The collection of restored hand tools started by J. Edmund Bull and augmented by many local gifts, occupy the many implement sheds. Other shops contain the tools of the blacksmith, joiner, woodwright, cooper, potter, wheelwright, dairy farmer, spinner and weaver. In the display barn, there is a replica of the late 19th century general store, an office of the veterinarian and other displays. The carriage barn houses carriages, buggies and sleighs. The cannery shares the history of the canning house in Harford county when it was a hub of this industry throughout the county. The museum grounds are enhanced with a variety of trees and shrubs, perennial flowers and cutting garden and herb garden.
- The Museum Store features some of the hand-crafted articles produced by Steppingstone friends and volunteers and other items all Made in the USA.
- By special agreement, the museum is jointly sponsored on a non-funding basis by the Maryland Park Service. A limited staff and a extensive volunteer network administer and organize all museum functions, programs and special events. Programs are supported by grants from Harford County, the Harford County Cultural Arts Board, and the Maryland State Arts Council.
- Steppingstone Farm Museum encompasses 23 acres and 23 structures within Susquehanna State Park that the museum manages as part of a long term lease from the park
- The focus of the museum collections is 1880-1920 Harford County Agricultural History
- The museum interprets the folk arts and trades through Artisan Demonstration weekends, tours, and programs to share the skills of the “last rural generation” and provides “a Steppingstone to the past” as per our founder, JE Bull, 45 years ago this year!
- The museum serves as a Venue for community events and as “Your Country Retreat”
- We strive to be a Living Museum- we are growing our living farm components and opening more spaces for interpretation and discourse, some programs and events also feature Living History portrayals
- Steppingstone Museum Association, inc. is a private, not for profit 501c3 organization- donations and memberships are welcome!
- As part of measuring our tourism and local economic impact we use TrafX Trail Counters to count our drive-in and walk-through visitation. This helps us to secure grant funding to preserve and maintain this historic property for future generations of visitors.
Steppingstone Farm Museum is proud to share the Agricultural Heritage of Harford County, to learn about other pieces of our local heritage we recommend you visit:
We are within Susquehanna State Park and there are many sites you can visit while in the park which also offers hiking, mountain biking, riding, fishing, boating, camping and more!
Susquehanna Museum at the Lock House in Havre de Grace (10 min drive) Share the history of the canal system and locks on the Susquehanna River in this historic home.
Concord Point Lighthouse and Keeper’s Dwelling in Havre de Grace (15 min drive) Features one of the oldest lighthouses in continuous operation on the east coast and visitors can tour the lighthouse and keeper’s dwelling with exhibits and educational programs.
Havre de Grace Maritime Museum (15 min drive) Presents the maritime heritage of the Lower Susquehanna River and the Upper Bay.
Havre de Grace Decoy Museum (15 min drive) Shares the history of Decoy Carving and waterfowling in the Chesapeake Bay.
Anita C. Leight Estuary Center in Abingdon (26 min drive) Features one of the few remaining freshwater tributaries of the Upper Chesapeake Bay accessible to the public, they also provide an array of nature and history based programs.
Eden Mill Nature Center in Jarrettsville (41 min drive) Features a Grist Mill Museum and a Nature Center
Ladew Topiary Gardens in Monkton (42 min drive) Shares a historic Manor House with surrounding gardens featuring extensive topiary, a cafe, and tours.