The museum's Display Barn is a total loss. The Level VFD was assisted in fighting it by the Susquehanna Hose Company, who captured this photo.

Havre de Grace Museum Burns with Historic Artifacts Inside

The Office of the Maryland State Fire Marshal is investigating a large fire at a historic barn along the Susquehanna River.

The barn was part of the Steppingstone Farm Museum in Havre de Grace, a Susquehanna State Park property owned by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources and leased to Steppingstone.

A museum employee discovered the fire just before 1:30 p.m. Sunday, June 2, inside the lower level of the barn. The museum grounds were open at the time, but the barn, which had historic exhibits on display and stored additional artifacts as well, is only open during special events and by request.

It took 50 firefighters, led by the Level Volunteer Fire Department, to bring the fire under control. No one was hurt. The barn building was a total loss, estimated at $200,000 worth of damage.

The fire marshal’s office can’t put a value on the historic artifacts destroyed in the fire. Photo: Steppingstone Farm Museum

Sadly, the fire marshal’s office says it cannot put a price on the historic artifacts inside that were destroyed. The fire marshal is investigating the cause.

The Steppingstone Farm Museum, Inc., whose mission it is to preserve and interpret the rural heritage of this part of the upper Bay, posted on Facebook shortly after the fire, “As many of you have heard, we’ve suffered the devastating loss of our Display Barn today. Luckily no one was hurt, no animals were involved & we are truly grateful for our first responders.”

The Steppingstone Farm Museum opened in 1958 at a different location, and moved to its current location on Quaker Neck Bottom Road in 1979. Known as the Land of Promise Farm, the tract of land was founded in 1684 by Colonel Thomas Taylor. Several historic outbuildings have been added over the years, including a blacksmith shop that was trucked in from nearby Level, Maryland, and moved in 1983.

Anyone who wants to help the museum recover from this historic loss can make a donation at