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Architecture

This category contains 14 posts

Photo Mystery: The Investigation

A few weeks ago, we shared a photograph of an unidentified building which had long stumped the Library staff. We are grateful for the myriad of suggestions from our readers, and we’ve been busy investigating them by digging into our Passano-O’Neill file and photograph collections. Several readers suggested that the date of the ambrotype was [...]

Photo Mystery: A Stumped Sleuth

One of the best parts about working in the Special Collections Department is trying to identify subjects in old photographs. It requires a certain amount of detective work – a keen eye, dedicated research, and a lot of reasonable deduction. While it is often impossible to determine the identity of an anonymous subject from a [...]

Carlin’s Park: “Baltimore’s Million Dollar Playground”

On August 13, 1919, John J. Carlin advertised the opening night of his latest business venture—an amusement park he billed as “Baltimore’s Million-Dollar Playground.” Liberty Heights Park only featured a carousel, “Dip the Dips,” and a few other rides, but major plans were underway. He promised that his park when completed would be “an amusement [...]

Green Mount Cemetery, John Pendleton Kennedy, and Elizabeth Kennedy’s Unusual Grave Marker

Green Mount Cemetery, dedicated in 1839, is a paradigm of the rural cemetery movement which transformed American burial practice.  Like other mid nineteenth-century reform efforts such as temperance, abolition, and women’s rights, it was an attempt to improve society. Yet Green Mount has not attracted the attention enjoyed by other early rural cemeteries, such as [...]

General Hospital No. 7 and the Blinded Veterans of the Great War in Baltimore

Many of the hundreds of students who pass through the Humanities Building at Loyola University Maryland each year may not know the true significance of the halls through which they are walking. Indeed, one may not realize that almost exactly one hundred years ago the officials of the U.S. Army War Department were making necessary [...]

French Delegation to Baltimore, May 1917: A Botanical Memento

One hundred years ago today these pansies bloomed in a lush and colorful bed on the east side of Mount Vernon Place. Three days later, on May 14, 1917, thousands of Baltimoreans gathered as city officials escorted a French war delegation to the proposed site of a monument to the Marquis de Lafayette, American ally [...]

The Newcomer Memorial Font: Art and Industry in Baltimore City

Baltimore’s long history as “The Monumental City” and current art culture means that there is an abundance of outdoor sculpture available to see. Although these public sculptures make the city’s streets rich with decoration, artwork that is placed indoors is sometimes overlooked. One such sculpture is the Newcomer Memorial Font (1902-1904) inside the Emmanuel Episcopal [...]

The Oldest Known Photographs of Ellicott City

Institutional memory is a vital component of any organization. Today, with increasing turnover rates and the decreasing probability of employees remaining with one employer for the duration of their working career, that memory is a dwindling resource. In an archive, where an in depth knowledge of objects that may number into the millions can only [...]

Lost City: Baltimore’s Grand Theatres

What happened to the movie business in Baltimore? Between 1900 and 1970 about 235 movie theatres in Baltimore opened and closed. The technological advances that created this once popular form of entertainment also contributed to its demise, as television and later the internet allowed viewers to stay at home to watch a wide variety of program [...]

Thomas Poppleton’s Surveyor’s Map that Made Baltimore, 1822

Between 1776 and 1820 Baltimore grew like kudzu on a riverbank.  Geographically three settlements, the original town, Old town and Fell’s Point were legally merged into one and the official boundaries of the resulting BaltimoreCity (incorporated in 1797) were expanded to encompass 14.71 square miles by legislative fiat in 1817.  In that period the resident [...]

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