“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Ellicott City in Howard County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)


Koreatown Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Devry Becker Jones (CC0), September 5, 2022
1. Koreatown Marker
A hanok (Korean: 한옥, 韓屋)
is a traditional Korean house. Hanok were first designed and built in the 14th century during the Joseon Dynasty.

A hanok is a Korean house which was developed in Korean Peninsula and Manchuria. [3]

Early Time
Paleolithic people in the Korean Peninsula stayed in caves or made temporary houses. In the Neolithic era, the temporary house developed into a dugout hut. They dug into the ground with a small shovel and built a small house which used rafters and columns. Wood was used for the rafters and columns, and straw was used for roof. In the Bronze Age, there were several columns in the house, so the area of the house was extended relative to early houses. Iron Age Hanok had Ondol (Hangul: 온돌, Hanja: 溫堗), and also used Giwa (Hangul: 기와), a kind of roofing tile which was made with fired clay. By using Giwa roof tiles, hanok developed a specific shape.

The environment-friendly aspects of traditional Korean houses range from the structure's
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inner layout to the building materials which were used. Another unique feature of traditional houses is their special design for cooling the interior in summer and heating the interior in winter.

The raw materials used in Hanok, such as soil, timber, and rock, are all natural and recyclable and do not cause pollution. Hanok's have their own tiled roofs (Giwa; Hangul: 기와), wooden beams and stone-block construction. Cheoma is the edge of Hanok's curvy roofs. The lengths of the Cheoma can be adjusted to control the amount of sunlight that enters the house. Hanji (Korean traditional paper, Hangul: 한지) is lubricated with bean oil making it waterproof and polished. Windows and doors made with Hanji are beautiful and breathable.

Dancheong (Korean: 단청; 丹青) refers to Korean traditional decorative colouring on wooden buildings and artifacts for the purpose of style. It literally means "cinnabar and blue-green" in Korean, and is sometimes translated as "red and blue" in English. The Korean dancheong, along with its decorations. and the choice of paint colours, carry various symbolic meanings. The Korean dancheong is based on five basic colours; blue (east), white (west), red (south), black (north), and yellow (center). The use of those five colours reflected
Koreatown Marker [Reverse] image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Devry Becker Jones (CC0), September 5, 2022
2. Koreatown Marker [Reverse]
the use of the yin and yang principle and the Philosophy of the five elements. The Korean dancheong is usually used in important places, such as temples and palaces, and can even be found on the eaves of temple's roofs with patterns of animals (e.g. dragons, lions, cranes). Dancheon also functions not only not only as decoration, but also for practical purposes such as to protect building surfaces against temperature and to make the crudeness of materials less conspicuous. It also protects the wood against insects, prolonging its lifetime. Applying dancheong on the surfaces of buildings require trained skills, and artisans called dancheongjang (단청장) designed the painted patterns. The dancheongjang are considered living national treasures in South Korea and are classified as being part of the National Intangible Cultural heritage by the Cultural Heritage Administration in South Korea.

Maryland Koreatown Pavilion
To symbolize Korean structure, this pavilion is made on Taegeuk symbol representing balance in the universe; the red half represents positive cosmic forces, and the blue half represents the complementary or opposing, negative cosmic forces.

Architecture is based on 1st generation super wing ball from Choson Dynastic era. Choson was a Korean dynastic kingdom that lasted for approximately five centuries.
Koreatown Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Devry Becker Jones (CC0), September 5, 2022
3. Koreatown Marker
It was the last dynastic kingdom of Korea. It was founded by Yi Seong-gye in July 1392 and replaced by the Korean Empire in October 1897. The kingdom was founded following the aftermath of the overflow of Goryeo in what is today the city of Kaesong. Early on, Korea was retitled and the capital was relocated to modern-day Seoul. The kingdom's northernmost borders were expanded to the natural boundaries at the rivers of Amnok and Tuman through the subjugation or the Jurchens.

To wish prosperity of business around the Maryland Koreatown, spider symbol was used which was only used by royal fertility in Korean History.

In June 2019, Koreatown Planning Committee was established with the goal of bringing the first Koreatown in Maryland to Howard County, home to more than 5,000 Korean Americans. Howard County values cultural diversity and recognizes the positive economic impact that diversity has on the community. The establishment of Koreatown is intended to benefit all residents and increase promotion of all businesses in the area.

Korean red pines were treated (undergoes continuous steaming and backing process to protect woods from insects and termites for several weeks) and hand carved.

Once trees were carved to specification, it goes through coloring process. By July 2021, manufacturing process completed and ready to be shipped to Howard
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County, Maryland U.S.

In September 2021, Nationally recognized artisans and master builders from Korea visited Howard County, Maryland to install traditional Korean style signs near the 9339 Baltimore National Pike and 9380 Baltimore Baltimore National Pike.
Erected by Koreatown Maryland.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: ArchitectureArts, Letters, MusicAsian AmericansIndustry & CommerceSettlements & Settlers. A significant historical month for this entry is June 2019.
Location. 39° 16.641′ N, 76° 50.057′ W. Marker is in Ellicott City, Maryland, in Howard County. Marker is on Baltimore National Pike (U.S. 40) 0.1 miles east of Plumtree Drive, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 9339 Baltimore National Pike, Ellicott City MD 21042, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. St. John’s Episcopal Church (approx. 0.4 miles away); MacAlpine (approx. half a mile away); Decatur Dorsey (approx. 1.4 miles away); Mile Marker 14 (approx. 1.7 miles away); Fells Lane Community (approx. 1.9 miles away); The National Road (approx. 1.9 miles away); MaryLandscapes (approx. 1.9 miles away); Ellicott’s Mills (approx. 1.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Ellicott City.
Credits. This page was last revised on September 17, 2022. It was originally submitted on September 9, 2022, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 367 times since then and 32 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on September 9, 2022, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.

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Feb. 24, 2024