Baltimore Sesquicentennial Celebration Collection - PP135

Collection finding aids of Photograph Collections in the Prints and Photographs Division of the Maryland Historical Society Library


Prints and Photographs Division, Maryland Historical Society
201 W. Monument St.
Baltimore, MD 21201

Finding aid created by Katherine Cowan with funding from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, July 1999


The Baltimore Sesquicentennial was celebrated October 11-19, 1880, marking the 150th anniversary of the city's founding in 1730. With the leadership of Mayor Ferdinand C. Latrobe, the city paused to take stock of its growth with advancements in shipping and transportation, and its position relative to other cities in the region and nation, and to appreciate founders like Carroll, Howard, Patterson, Oliver, Stephenson, and Purviance, and recent luminaries like McDonogh, Peabody, and Hopkins.

The festivities included oration, tableaux, meetings, and music; five days of parades of groups including African American social organizations, masons, school children, military organizations, fire and police departments, letter carriers, and telegraph messengers; concluding with illumination of the city and pyrotechnic displays. Public schools were in recess for the entire week of October 11-15.

Note: Information on the Sesquicentennial was compiled from Pamphlets 4122 and 5186 in the Maryland Historical Society Library.

Collection Origin

Gift of the Hon. Henry Stockbridge, 1921.

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of 1 box with 11 folders containing ca. 40 photoprints of the Sesquicentennial celebration made in 1880. Views are primarily Baltimore city streets, with monuments, hotels, stores, and business establishments decorated for the event. There are some group portraits and views of parades including floats. Many of the photographs are mounted onto board, and are captioned and dated on the margin, identifying stree locations and landmarks. Unmounted photographs are not captioned or dated.


The photographs are arranged in folders according to PP catalog numbers.

Container List

1 Box

Box 1: 11 Folders

Box 1, Folder 1
PP135.1-.2 - Baltimore St. at Charles St. 2 items. Dup/copy negs Z24.282 and Z24.1753.

Box 1, Folder 2
PP135.3-.4 - Arches on Baltimore St.: "Industry the Means" and "Shoe and Leather Board of Trade". Dup copy negs Z24.518 and Z24.517.

Box 1, Folder 3
PP135.5-.6 - Sun and American buildings and Baltimore St.; Baltimore St. at McClellans Alley. 2 items. Dup/copy neg Z24.1752.

Box 1, Folder 4
PP135.7-.8 - Baltimore St. at Broadway; procession on N. Eutaw St. 2 items. Dup/copy neg Z24.519.

Box 1, Folder 5
PP135.9-.10 - Park and Lexington Sts.; Howard and Baltimore Sts.with arch "Our flag was still there...". 2 items. Dup/copy neg Z24.520.

Box 1, Folder 6
PP135.11-.12 - Maltby House, Pratt St.; Engine House No. 7, N. Eutaw St. with arch "Providence hath made...". 2 items. Dup/copy negs Z24.1757 and Z24.1756.

Box 1, Folder 7
PP135.13 - Sun building. 1 item.

Box 1, Folder 8
PP135.14-.17 - Uncaptioned: monuments, decorated buildings and streets. 4 items.

Box 1, Folder 9
PP135.18-.23 - Uncaptioned: street views with decorations, arches (including "Providence", "Anniversary of Baltimore", and "Our flag was still there"), buildings (including Gaddess Steam Marble Co. and S. Berney Shoe and Boot Factory), and groups of people; group portrait labelled "W. Ashner, Photographer, War of 1812 Old Defenders". 6 items. Dup/copy negs Z24.516, Z24.1755, Z24.1754, Z24.282 and Z24.285.

Box 1, Folder 10
PP135.24-.38 - Uncaptioned: Centennial ship; parade floats (including "He-Ho Tea"); street views (including Baltimore St.); and other decorations and displays (including City Motto?). 15 items. Dup/copy negs Z24.1749, Z24.1748, Z24.1747, Z24.284, Z24.515, and Z24.1750.

Box 1, Folder 11
PP135.39-.40 - Obelisk at Howard and Lombard Sts.; Obelisk and view looking up Howard St. 2 items. Dup/copy neg Z24.1743.

Other duplicate/copy negatives:

PP135.? - Sesquicentennial group portrait. Dup/copy neg Z24.283.