The Montgomery County Agricultural History Farm Park in Derwood hosted the Newman family reunion Saturday. Descendants and relatives of Albert and Mary Ellen Newman gathered to celebrate their ancestry.
The Newmans and their eight children moved from Northern Virginia to Brookeville in 1861. In 1879, the family purchased 40 acres on the northwestern edge of Magruder Farm, which is now part of the farm park.
After the Newmans settled there and other homes sprang up, the area grew to be a social center for the Newman family, and eventually -- with the name Newmantown -- it became one of many post-Civil War black communities in Montgomery County.
"We consider it a time to recall history and to get reacquainted with others and to renew old friendships of our mutual relations," said Newman family descendant Joan Kelly, 72, of Rockville. Her grandfather, Morton Maury Newman, was one of Albert and Mary Ellen Newman's eight children.
At left, Blair Kelly, 13, from left, Erin Kelly, 16, their mother, Adrienne Kelly of Olney and her mother-in-law, Joan Kelly of Rockville, join hands in prayer. At right is Joan Kelly's husband, John. Bottom left, Jon Weaver, left, of Bowie, and Melvin Johnson of Martinsburg, W. Va., discuss their roots at a family history board. Below, Bruce Newman of Fairfield, Calif., and his daughter Brittni, 10, at a prayer service. Reunions take place every two or three years.