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Baltimore History

This tag is associated with 51 posts

The Mastodon in the Museum

The great hall of the Maryland Historical Society is graced with the presence of a mastodon—a replica of a large creature related to the elephant that inhabited North America 10,000 years ago. It is a re-creation of the one assembled by famed artist, scientist, and inventor Charles Willson Peale. By 1786, the Maryland native adopted [...]

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 [...]

Lubov Breit Keefer – Baltimore’s Grande Dame of the Symphony

Lubov Breit Keefer – musician, scholar, teacher, arts activist – was born in 1896 in the industrial city of Nikolaev in southern Ukraine. In the 1910s, her father Alfred Breit came to the United States to teach mathematics at Johns Hopkins University, leaving Lubov, her mother and two brothers, Leo and Gregory, in Russia. Following [...]

“We only aspire to save” – The Nursery and Child’s Hospital of Baltimore

The Protestant Infant Asylum of Baltimore City was founded in 1875 to provide refuge for orphaned and abandoned babies. It was one of several similar privately funded charitable institutions which helped give shelter, medical attention, and eventually permanent homes to the city’s less fortunate children. These agencies were often set up by concerned citizens, primarily [...]

The Paint and Powder Club – “The Oldest Club of its Kind”

The Paint and Powder Club, established in 1893 as a philanthropic and social club, is dedicated both to camaraderie among its members and assistance to local charities from monies raised with theater productions.  Social events are held throughout the year as the members prepare the coming theatrical presentations. It was founded as a men’s club [...]

Lost City: Local Taverns and Big Breweries

Back in the days when Baltimore was a manufacturing center, neighborhood bars were gathering places for the blue collar workers that worked in the industries. Their thirsts were quenched by the local breweries that produced beer for working men and women and even some high quality brews. Many of these neighborhood taverns were destroyed in [...]

The Chocolate Dandies: Blake and Sissle’s other Musical

On April 28 of this year, Baltimore born ragtime and jazz pianist and composer Eubie Blake and his partner Noble Sissles’ most famous work, Shuffle Along, will open on Broadway, nearly 100 years after its initial run. In 1921, Shuffle Along transformed Broadway and left a far reaching cultural and social legacy. But the pair also produced [...]

Lost City: Baltimore’s Vibrant Automobile Show Rooms

In early 1900s Baltimore, Mt. Royal Avenue looked quite different from the land originally developed in 1881 carved from portions of Oliver and Johns Streets. The advent of the automobile began to change the face of America and Baltimore. Beginning in 1899 automobile showrooms began to sprout up on Mt.Royal Avenue. Brands like Locomobile, Peerless, [...]

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 [...]

Lost No More: Recovering Frances Ellen Watkins Harper’s “Forest Leaves”

Frances Ellen Watkins Harper’s first book of poems had been considered lost to history for well over one hundred years. U-Mass graduate student Johanna Ortner shares the tale of recovering this incredibly valuable text–reblogged from Common-Place.org My home is where eternal snow Round threat’ning craters sleep, Where streamlets murmur soft and low And playful cascades leap. [...]

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