New donor gives $10k for Doleman museum

August 19, 2011|By ANDREW SCHOTZ |
  • Rosemary Doleman-Lucas, left, thanks Ad Fulton Friday for his $10,000 donation to the Doleman Black Heritage Museum.
By Ric Dugan/Staff Photographer

HAGERSTOWN, Md. — Supporters of the Doleman Black Heritage Museum in Hagerstown Friday welcomed a second large donation to their cause.

Ad Fulton, the president of the AC&T fuel company, gave $10,000 through a fund he has with the Community Foundation of Washington County.

Fulton's donation follows a $25,000 donation earlier this year by Lee Stine on behalf of the Agnita M. Stine Schreiber Foundation. That donation lets the museum qualify for a state matching grant.

Fulton said that when he heard that the museum was having trouble getting the matching grant, he offered to help.

"I just wanted to give something back to this community," he said Friday after a small thank-you ceremony at the home of museum supporter Janice Kelsh.

The fortunes of the museum — an extensive collection built by the late Marguerite Doleman — have improved this year.

The state approved the $25,000 grant in 2009, but the museum couldn't raise the matching money before the two-year deadline.

However, Del. John P. Donoghue, D-Washington, who sponsored the original request in 2009, successfully got the deadline extended during this year's Maryland General Assembly session.

Stine noticed a story in The Herald-Mail about the museum's struggle to collect the state grant and offered $25,000 from the Agnita M. Stine Schreiber Foundation.

He gave a $15,000 check in April, then followed with the remaining $10,000 last month.

Alesia Parson-McBean, who is helping with the museum project, said the group might seek another state grant.

The Washington County Gaming Commission recently awarded the museum $1,099.

Parson-McBean said the biggest need now is money for operating expenses.

On Tuesday, the Hagerstown City Council is scheduled to consider a request to pay Milner + Carr Conservation, LLC of Philadelphia up to $15,000.

Parson-McBean said that will cover the preservation of 11 pieces in the collection. The money will come from a $150,000 grant the museum received from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. The city administers the grant.

Due to the cost, she said the museum had to greatly scale back its original plan to preserve more than 150 pieces.

In the meantime, museum supporters are looking ahead to a new traveling exhibit and a fall fundraising event.

Curator Wendi Perry said the traveling exhibit will be a display about 6 feet high, giving the museum good exposure in the community. It will tell the Dolemans' story and show some pieces in the collection.

Supporters are trying to find a home for the museum.

Perry said she also is working on two other projects. One is a look at family collections with the Doleman collection.

The other is a history of Jonathan Street. She encouraged people with information or stories to tell to contact her at 410-302-7743 or

The museum will hold its annual fundraiser on Nov. 12 at Cortland Mansion in Hagerstown. Parson-McBean said the goal is to raise $10,000.

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