Book Review: Poplar Grove’s My Darling Alice

Poplar Grove's My Darling Alice
Poplar Grove's My Darling Alice

Many of our projects have had historic tomes written about them full of facts and figures featuring prominent events, dates and people in US history. But some of our properties invite you to examine a more intimate side of history. One in particular is Poplar Grove.

Poplar Grove has been owned by the same family for 11 generations and has proven itself a treasure trove of personal, intimate snapshots of life across 400 years. In My Darling Alice, author Mary Wood, invites you into their lives to experience firsthand, through the letters and diaries of family members, what is was like to live at Poplar Grove between the years of 1837-1935.

Her narrative begins before the civil war and follows the family for nearly a century providing first person accounts of family and social life as well as the economic impacts through the years of this landholding family. Typically unexplored in historic accounts, the reader ventures into the Baltimore and Philadelphia social scene, finishing schools, graveside tea parties and more.

It was a pleasure to come “close to the heart” of this family in Mary’s book as we work to restore their ancestral home.