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Construction of this house was begun in 1887 by the Governor's father, James Tawes at about the same time as he married Alice Byrd (Tawes) who might have been a relative of Curley Byrd.
The house was originally a two-story center hall home which was common on the Eastern Shore at that time. The columned portico on the front and a porte cochere adjacent to the sunroom were added later. Total modifications were completed in 1920, over 30 years after James had started building the home.
Governor Tawes and his two brothers and sister grew up in this house and lived here until his marriage in 1912 to Helen Avalynne Gibson, his companion of over 60 years.
The J. Millard Tawes Foundation, now the Crisfield Heritage Foundation, purchased the home in 1997 and is in the process of restoring it to its original beauty. The Foundation plans to display the Governor's artifacts and offer the public access to his library, including his correspondence, speeches and research materials.
At first I thought that this was the town library, but I see that is not the case. The library museum is open by appointment only.
Updated Apr 4, 2011
Phone: (410) 968-2501
From the Side Street Market, you can also take a tour of J. C. W. Tawes & Son and watch the pickers in action. Watch the work boats bringing in their catch each day and watch the process the crabs go through until they reach the pickers. A good picker can do 15 lbs of crab meat an hour (for a short time).
The photo shows J. C. Tawes from the water with the balcony of the Side Street market just beyond it.
Updated Apr 4, 2011
Go to Jane's Island State Park and enjoy the nature trails or have a picnic in one of the pavilions. You can do this as a day trip, or you can camp.
Jane's Island has about 25 boat slips in a marina available on a first come first serve basis and there is also a boat ramp. There are kayaks and canoes for rent with a number of 'water trails' around the island. There are some beaches which are accessible only by water (no lifeguards)
There is an education center with a 24 foot observation platform (bring your own binoculars). A bird watcher's checklist is available.
Updated Sep 12, 2004
Go to the pavillion at the end of the city dock any time of day. But if the sun is setting, this is a good place to watch it. If you can walk faster than an ice cream cone can melt, you can eat a cone and watch the sunset.
Written Jul 6, 2003
Harry Clifton "Curley" Byrd was born in Crisfield and graduated at the age of nineteen, from the Maryland Agricultural College, as the Un. of MD was then known, with a degree in civil engineering. He returned to his alma mater late in 1912 as an instructor in English, an assistant in physical culture, and football coach.
Byrd rapidly climbed the administrative ranks at the university, becoming VP in 1932. When Raymond Pearson resigned as president in 1935, the Board of Regents named Byrd acting president, making his appointment permanent on February 21, 1936. Many view him as the father of the modern University of Maryland. Byrd went on to become known, appropriately, as a builder; of enrollment, of budgets, of buildings. Between the time of Byrd's appointment as vice president in the '20s and his resignation as president in 1954, the university's take of the state budget more than quadrupled to $4,500,000, and enrollment jumped from under 2,000 to more than 15,000.
In a 1941 book, "Curley Byrd Catches the Worm" by Bob Considine, a writer for the Saturday Evening Post, Considine describes him as the "dictator, president, athletic director, football coach, comptroller, chief lobbyist and glamour boy supreme" "Curley is the most-hated and most-beloved man in Maryland," wrote Considine
In 1954, Byrd resigned from the presidency to run unsuccessfully for governor of Maryland against Theodore McKeldin. In retirement, he pursued a career in real estate, banking, construction, and publishing and two unsuccessful campaigns for the U. S. House of Representatives.
Updated Jul 6, 2003
1 Review and 14 Opinions This motel is on the marina map on the other side of the marina. I have not stayed there. I know...