To the potential loss of Elkton’s last vestige to its heyday as the “Marriage Capital of the East.” The Historic Little Wedding Chapel, the last operating chapel on Elkton’s Main Street, went to auction this week, but found no new owner as Cecil Bank, the mortgage holder, ended up purchasing the building for $60,000. Officials said that the bank will try to facilitate a private sale in the future as the chapel works its way through the foreclosure process. Meanwhile, the former owner the Rev. Frank Smith said he would stay as long as possible, with the last scheduled weddings for the chapel set in July. At the turn of the 20th century, many of Maryland’s border states instituted 48-hour waits for couples to use a marriage license, but the Free State carried on unfettered. At one time, more than 15 chapels performed thousands of weddings, mostly for elopers, along Elkton’s streets in a year. Even celebrities such as baseball great Willie Mays and actress Joan Fontaine went to Elkton to tie the knot. After Maryland instituted its own 48-hour wait in 1938, however, the attraction of Elkton waned, although marriages were still popular for years. The Historic Little Wedding Chapel was still popular with families who have had generations of members marry there, and hundreds of people commented on the Whig’s initial reporting on social media. We too lament the possible loss of Elkton’s last chapel, and we hope a new owner recognizes its historical importance.
To the impact of the Republican stalemate’s impact on Supreme Court decisions levied on Thursday. One of the most high-profile cases heard by the nation’s highest court was one about whether the president has the ability to allow illegal immigrants, who are parents of citizens or lawful permanent residents, to remain in the country and apply for work permits if they have been here at least five years and have not committed felonies or repeated misdemeanors. More than 25 states successfully fought the Obama administration’s action in lower court rulings, and on Thursday, in a 4-4 ruling, the Supreme Court essential deferred further action. One seat on the nine-member panel remains vacant due to the death of Justice Antonin Scalia earlier this year and the refusal of congressional Republicans to consider a replacement offered by the president, who has nominated Judge Merrick Garland. Whether you agree with the president’s actions or not, the GOP’s continued abdication of their duties as congressional members is an affront to our democracy, and one that should be rectified in order to eliminate such embarrassing non-decisions by our highest court in the future.