Martha Frick Symington Sanger at Washington College on Feb. 21

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Martie picAmericans are innately curious about the history of their families. The surge in popularity of databases like Ancestry.com and the television show “Finding Your Roots” attests to this fascination with forebears. Martha Frick Symington Sanger’s new book Maryland Blood spans four centuries of American history as seen through the lens of one Maryland family’s letters and demonstrates the unique light that family history shines on American history. She’ll be on campus Feb. 21 to discuss the process of researching and writing her 11-generation biography of the Hambleton family, including the challenges she faced and the surprises she encountered.

The free, public program, sponsored by the C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience, starts at 6:00 p.m. in Hynson Lounge, Hodson Hall, followed by a book signing.

From the arrival of William Hambleton in 1657 to Desert Storm, the Hambletons served in every major American conflict—be it on land, sea, and eventually the air—while also making significant civic and humanitarian contributions. Bankers, businessmen, government officials and visionaries (John A. Hambleton co-created Pan American Airways with Juan Trippe after the Great War), the Hambletons both participated in and created American history.

Sanger is an 11th-generation descendant of pioneer William Hambleton and a great-granddaughter of Henry Clay Frick. She is the author of Henry Clay Frick: An Intimate Portrait, The Henry Clay Frick Houses, and Helen Clay Frick: Bittersweet Heiress.  In 1991, Sanger served as an advisor for the introductory video to the New York Frick Collection. She has also been instrumental in widening the use of family papers and art history materials contained in the Frick archives.

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