Curator's Choice

Curator's Choice is a monthly series that highlights a significant or unusual artifact chosen from the MAC Lab collections by our staff. We are archiving previous selections so that you can see what is “behind-the-scenes” at the MAC Lab. We hope you enjoy learning about ​this month's distinctive artifact, and we welcome any additional insight you can provide us with the objects.


Come back and discover what piece of the past we have to share with you next month!

From the list below, select a year to jump to that year's list of Curator's Choice issues.

Jump to Year:       2022   2021   2020   2019   2018   2017   2016   2015   2014   2013   2012   2011   2010   2009   2008

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​2022 Issues

​​January Making Mocha--Not a Coffee You Would Want to ​Drink
​Patricia Samford​​
​​​February X-rays: Unveiling a Fashion Accessory
​Arianna Johnston​​​
​​March Perukes and Bilboquets: Wig Making in Annapolis
Rebecca Morehouse​​
April The Volunteers Find All the Cool Stuff
​​Scott Strickland
May Artful Appliance
​Monica Kitner
​​June A Token for a Pint
​Alice Merkel
July Biblical Bling: A Crown of Thorns Pendant and Maryland's 1689 Protestant Revolution
​Sara Rivers Cofield
​​August “​​I always carried my little Book with me”: Aide-mémoire Hardware from Saunders Point
H​eather Rardin Rovardi
September The Sulphide, the Most Prized Marble of Them All
​Rebecca Morehouse
​​October The Tortoise and the Hair
Nichole Doub
​​November Turkey Tales: What Archaeological Turkey Bones Can Tell Us
Alex Glass

2021​ Issues

​January ​Brass in Pocket: A Button Legacy​Heather Rardin Rovardi
​​FebruaryPeople and Pets as Property: An Exploration of a Collar ​​​​Sara Rivers Cofield
​MarchHoodoo Alive and Well in Mid-20th Century Annapolis​Rebecca Morehouse​
​April ​A Familiar Face​Alice Merkel
​May ‘​​Not One Cent’: The Satirical Life and Times of the Hard Times Token​​Monica Kitner
​June ​Let No Man Thirst For Good Beer​Patricia Samford​
​JulySunflowers​​Alex Glass
​AugustSpit Take:  Cuspidor versus Spittoon​​Patricia Samford​
​SeptemberCannons, Cannons, and More Cannons​Nichole Doub
​October ​An Amelung Decanter?Patricia Samford​
​November ​Small Beads in Big SpacesScott Strickland
​December ​O Holy Night SoilSara Rivers Cofield

2020 Issues

​January A Bank You Can “Bank” On ​​​​​​​Patricia Samford
​FebruaryGetting a Handle on a Mystery​Sara Rivers Cofield​
​MarchKeeping Everything From Going Adrift​​​Alice Merkel 
​AprilSergeant Jacob Huyett’s Cavalry Helmet​​Francis Lukezic
​MayCrimping a Pie’s Style!​​​Rebecca Morehouse
​JuneHave You Seen the Great German Cask?​  ​Patricia Samford​
​July ​​What's the Point​​Greg Pierce
​AugustSugar Nippers ​​Patricia Samford​​
​​September  ​The Life Saving Lyle Gun​Nichole Doub
​October The Load I Carry: A Knapsack Hook from Pt. Lookout​​Heather Rardin Rovardi
​November Overturning Every Stone​​Alice Merkel ​
​December ​A Tale of Two Fossils​​Nathaniel Salzman

2019 Issues

Jan​uary​Culinary BottlePatricia Samford​​
​February Early-17th-century-Trading-Post.html​​​Rebecca Morehouse
​March A Tisket, a Tasket, a Beaded Wire Basket​Sara Rivers Cofield
​AprilFish in a Barrel​Monica Kitner
​MayBlades of Glory​Edward Chaney
​JuneDriving Through History in Deadwood, South Dakota​Francis Lukezic
​July Button Rings and Other ThingsSara Rivers Cofield​​
​AugustDecade Ring​Laura Masur
​September World War II M2 Sea Mine and Anchor​​​Heather Rardin
​October An 18th-century French Caribbean Coin in Baltimore​ ​Rebecca Morehouse​
​NovemberThe Accessorized Mariner ​​​​Patricia Samford
​December ​A Mighty Fine-Toothed Friend   ​​Alice Merkel

2018 Issues

January​Spill Vase​Patricia Samford
​FebruaryA Taste for Classicism​Seth Williams
​March Stumbling Upon a Storage Chest​Sara Rivers Cofield
​AprilToy Soldiers on Parade​Francis Lukezic
​MayClothed in Splendor: Mass-Produced Coffin Hardware of the 19th Century ​Mari Hagemeyer
​JuneA Bone Sewing Stiletto​Patricia Samford
​July ​Bennington Parian: A Look at Exquisite Craftsmanship​Sara Franklin
​AugustThe Curious Inner Lives of Cannons​Heather Rardin
​September ​Whale Oil Lamp​Patricia Samford
​OctoberPerpetual Calendar​Nichole Doub
​November The Junior G-Man Badge​Gareth McNair-Lewis
​DecemberYou Never Know What You're Going To Find​Ed Chaney

2017 Issues

Jan​uaryTaking the discipline at St. Inigoes Plantation-A Cilice from Priest’s Point​Laura E. Masur
​FebruaryUnder the Microscope: A Nineteenth-Century Flea Glass​Patricia Samford
​MarchPop Culture, Nineteenth-Century Style:The Lady of the Lake​Patricia Samford
​AprilA Fishy Find​Francis Lukezic
​MayA "Whale of a Well-Shaped Waist, 19th-Century Style​Patricia Samford
​June ​Pig Iron Bar with Runners from Antietam Furnace Iron Works​Gareth McNair-Lewis
​JulyCock Your Hat - Angles are Attitudes​Nichole Doub
​AugustSmelling Sweet, Mid-19th-Century Style​Richie Diguiseppe and Dalton Woody of Huntingtown High School Archaeology Club
​SeptemberBald Friar Petroglyphs- Maryland’s Forgotten Rock Art​Julie Flynn
​OctoberForget Me Not Mustache Cup​Patricia Samford
​NovemberThe Carroll “Dynasty” and the Mysterious “Falcon Crest” Fork​Sara Rivers Cofield
​DecemberNot Just Another Marginal Artifact​Ed Chaney

2016 Issues

Jan​uaryRoast Turkey; Seventeenth-Century StylePatricia Samford
​FebruaryA Campaign Button of the 18th-Century (Or was it?)​Sara Rivers Cofield
​March Carlyle WarehouseNichole Doub
​AprilScripture in Iron: Pennsylvania German Stove Plates from Antietam Furnace​Rebecca Morehouse
​May Functional and Stylish: A Cast Iron Franklin Stove from Catoctin Iron Furnace​Francis Lukezic
​June Archaeological Evidence of Formal Gardens Found at the Belair Mansion in Bowie, MD​Alex Glass
​JulyPassion Subdued by ReasonPatricia Samford​
​August The Acteon Carronade​Caitlin Shaffer​
​September A Day at the Beach - Ruby Stained Souvenir GlasswareErin Wingfield
​October Ghostly Glass-Uranium Glass​Annette Cook​
​November A US 1828 pattern Bayonet Scabbard Belt Plate​Gareth McNair-Lewis
​December ​Candle In The Wind (Or Actually, In The Ground)​Edward Chaney and Alexandra Glass

2015 Issues

Jan​uaryThe Buckle GenericSara Rivers Cofield
​February Evidence Of An African Instrument In Colonial Maryland?​Rebecca Morehouse​
​March Just Say No To Natty Bo - A Temperance Society TeacupPatricia Samford and Teresa Piovesan​
​AprilThe Badge of a US Cavalry OfficerNichole Doub
​May Smoking in Life and in the Hereafter: A Chinese Water Pipe from Deadwood, SD​Francis Lukezic
​June Buying Local: 18th-century Chesapeake Stoneware​Alex Glass
​JulyRemembering the Maine​Patricia Samford
​August The Perfect Dose​Isaiah Johnson
​September Lessons for ChildrenMadison Pearson
​October The Mystery of Stiegel-Type Glassware​Erin Wingfield
​November A Pewter Spoon from the Smith St. Leonard Site​Gareth McNair-Lewis​
​December Ice Skating Through the Ages​​Caitlin Shaffer

2014 Issues

Jan​uary A Humans Best - and Oldest - Friend​Rebecca Morehouse​
​February The Rise of Balloon Flight​​Caitlin Shaffer​
​March Wear For My Sake - A Mourning Ring Fragment from Smiths St. LeonardAlex Glass​
​AprilSnake Oil and Magic Potions: Fooling the Public with Cure-alls and QuackeryErin Wingfield​
​May Bavarian Black Buttons​Sara Rivers Cofield​
​June Tool Check Tag​Patricia Samford
​JulyMaryland's Oil FieldsNichole Doub​
​August The Allure of French Perfume​Patricia Samford​
​SeptemberThe Rise and Fall of the Green Fairy​Annette Cook
​October Some Objects Lead an Interesting Life: A Tale of Dr. Samuel Mudd's Tea and Coffee Service​Francis Lukezic
​November Iron Draw Knife from the Jackson Homestead (18MO609)​Gareth McNair-Lewis
​DecemberI LOVE Your Hair!​Edward Chaney

2013 Issues

Jan​uary "Buttons to Trim the Coat in the Manner I Wish It to Be"​Caitlin Shaffer
​FebruaryWho Bit the Bullet?: Let Slip the Pigs of War!​Edward Chaney
​March Erin Go Bragh! "Home Rule" Tobacco Pipes and Ireland's Struggle for IndependenceRebecca Morehouse​
​April Peas, Beans, Corn and Wheat​Alex Glass
​May Go Figure!​Nichole Doub​
​June Mysterious Lead Objects from Smith St. Leonard​Annette Cook​
​July ​Fourth of July for the HarmonicaVirginie Ternisien​
​August Use A Bottle, Save a Breast!Makenli Essert
​September Take a Closer Look at this 18th-Century Needle Case Telescope​Sara Rivers Cofield​
​October Murder in Maryland: "Devills" Masquerading as Colonial Gentlemen​Erin Wingfield
​November Punch-Decorated Door Latch Bar from Smith St. Leonard Site​Gareth McNair-Lewis
​DecemberThe Line of Sight: A Brief History of EyeglassesChristy Nisbet​

2012 Issues

Jan​uary Much Ado About AsphaltEdward Chaney​
​February The Inkhorn​​Patricia Samford
​March The Smith's-St. Leonard FanAlex Glass​
​April Natural Approaches To Pest Management​Erin Wingfield​
​May Baltimore Rockingham Hunt Pitcher​Patricia Samford​
​June ​Camden Yards Piano BabyPatricia Samford ​
​JulyA Colonial Side SaddleSara Rivers Cofield
​AugustThe Mystery of Lake George​Sharon Osofsky
​September The Personal Touch​Annette Cook
​October The Disturbing History of DenturesErin Wingfield​
​NovemberAnyone for a Game of Ring Taw?Patricia Samford​
​December ​The Bond Street German Jeton​Heather Rardin

2011 Issues

Jan​uaryNative American Gaming Stones​Rebecca Morehouse
​FebruaryNo Curator's Choice​
​March The Real Reason Maryland Fans Hate Duke​Edward Chaney
​AprilNative American Effigies​Erin Wingfield
​May ​Ivory and Silver Walking Stick HandlePatricia Samford​
​June The Harquebus BarrelNancy S. Shippen​
​JulyAn Accokeek Pot​Caitlin Shaffer
​August An Apothecary Weight​Alex Glass​
​September Holey Molar!​Annette Cook
​October Signed, Sealed, Delivered​Nichole Doub
​November ​Dazzling Duds-Metal Thread in the 17th Century​Sara Rivers Cofield
​December ​Timekeeping in the 18th Century​Rebecca Morehouse

2010 Issues

Jan​uary Rachel Was Here​Annette Cook
​February Fake Treasure​Nichole Doub
​March The Cost of a Pretty Penny​Kenya Brown Fusciello
​April ​The Easter Egg Cache​Sara Rivers Cofield
​MayA Carved Bone Figure​Dennis C. Curry and Maureen Kavanagh
​JuneIt's All in The Details-Regimental Buttons from Valley Forge​Nancy S. Shippen
​JulyPierced Silver Coin​Alex Glass
​August Flintlock Gun Part​Annette Cook
​SeptemberPattensPatricia Samford
​October A "Wellth" of History​Sami Allen
​November Flintlock Pistol's Grotesque Butt CapKelly Cooper
​DecemberSacred Silver: A Cross-Shaped Reliquary Pendant​Sara Rivers Cofield 

2009 Issues

Jan​uaryA Model 1855 Bayonet​Gareth McNair-Lewis
​FebruarySaint Benedict Medal​Erin Wingfield
​March Horne Point Fireback​Nichole Doub
​AprilArtifact of An Archaeologist​Erin Wingfield
​May ​Civil War Canteen ​Nancy S. Shippen
​JuneCopper Points from Posey Site​Sara Rivers Cofield
​July Smith/St.Leonard Chafing Dish​Alex Glass
​August Witch Bottle​Rebecca Morehouse
​September Havre de Grace Cannon​Caitlin Shaffer
​October Bannerstones​Edward Chaney
​NovemberB & O Railroad Plate​Patricia Samford
​December ​A Colonial Collection of Native American Artifacts​Sami Allen

2008 Issues

Jan​uaryModified Cowrie ShellPatrica Samford
​February Tam O'Shanter Jug​Patricia Samford
​March Inscribed "SS" Bodkin​Sara Rivers Cofield
​April Columbus Paddle Wheel​Kathy Concannon
​MayTriangular Bit Smoking Pipe​Edward Chaney
​June​​ Decorated Bone Pin​Rebecca Morehouse
​July The CSS Alabama Dishes​Caitlin Shaffer
​August Rebecca Addison's Silver Thimble​Sara Rivers Cofield
​SeptemberWriting SlatePatricia Samford​
​October Jamestown Project​Kenya Brown Fusciello
​November Friderich Emich Medallion​Erin Wingfield
​December ​Popes Creek Pottery Vessels​Edward Chaney

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