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Maryland History

This tag is associated with 67 posts

“Unwearied in Their Attentions”: Secessionist Women and the 1866 Southern Relief Fair

The Civil War deeply divided Baltimoreans along philosophical and sectional lines. The Secessionist women of Baltimore, those whose sympathies lay with the South, were often singled out for their devotion to the Confederacy. They supported their husbands and brothers in gray throughout the war, often risking arrest, imprisonment, or banishment. During the post-war era, the [...]

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 [...]

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 [...]

“White Enough to Pass”: Uncovering the story of John Wesley Gibson

“John Wesley Gibson represented himself to be not only the slave, but also the son of William Y. Day, of Taylor’s Mount, Maryland…” This is the opening statement of a slave narrative that tells the story of a man who chose freedom in a place and time that allowed slavery — Maryland in the 1850s. [...]

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 [...]

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