Put your best foot forward and explore the best of Baltimore! Join the Heritage Area's Urban Rangers on a memorable walk through history featuring historic attractions, unique neighborhoods, and colorful stories that make Baltimore charming and unique. From the Inner Harbor to Fell's Point - we've got Baltimore covered!
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History runs throughout the cobblestone streets of Fell's Point. Founded in 1726 by William Fell, a shipbuilder from England, Fell's Point served as the city's deep-water port for over a century. The area's residents were eyewitnesses to the bombardment of Fort McHenry during the War of 1812. Shipbuilders crafted impressive ships, including the young U.S. Navy's USS Constellation and the USS Enterprise. Frederick Douglass periodically resided as a slave in Fell's Point until 1838 when he fled bondage.
Tours depart from the Fell's Point Visitor Center at 1724 Thames Street.
Walk just a few blocks east from Baltimore's Sunday Farmers Market and you enter one of the oldest neighborhoods in the city – historic Jonestown. On this tour of often overlooked landmarks, you'll see the city’s oldest religious building (Friends Quaker Meeting House) and the third oldest synagogue in the country (Lloyd Street Synagogue), learn about cast iron buildings and the longest-lived signer of the Declaration of Independence, and get inside the famed Phoenix Shot Tower – the tallest structure in the United States until 1846.
"Structure and Perspective" brings together commissioned works by Maryland-born artist David Brewster with objects from the Maryland Historical Society’s collection. This marrying of old with new, contemporary with “antique,” creates a dialogue that inspires thought-provoking discussions of how the objects of the past remain relevant to today’s ever-changing social landscape. It also highlights Brewster’s often challenging perspective on the modern world, one that looks to the overlooked or unseen.
In 1968, nine Catholic peace activists protested the Vietnam War in a fiery blaze in Catonsville, Maryland. “Activism and Art: the Catonsville Nine, 50 Years Later” examines one of the most iconic and written-about acts of political protest in 20th century American history. Through art created by Catonsville Nine activist Tom Lewis and elements of the documentary “Hit & Stay: a history of faith and resistance,” this exhibit explores the motivations and considers the consequences of civil disobedience, and contextualizes this protest in our present turbulent political climate.
In this workshop, participants can create and decorate their own sugar skull. Instructor Alejandra Martinez teaches the class about the history of sugar skulls and their place in Día de los Muertos traditions. This program is part of the museum’s Baltimore Foodways Series and is supported by McCormick & Company and Domino Sugar.
Always wanted to learn how to make cocktails like the pros? Come join one of our tour guides as we walk you through the history of Sagamore Spirit and the process of how we make all our Rye Whiskey. Gather in one of our tasting rooms with individual stations to make some of our signature cocktails. You’ll get hands on in creating two cocktails, that are easy enough to recreate at home. Get ready to get hands-on creating these thirst quenching cocktails!
Mount Vernon began as a country estate for Revolutionary War hero John Eager Howard and grew to be the place to live for Baltimore's rich and famous in the mid-nineteenth century. The Garrett family, owners of the B&O Railroad, the Walters, founders of the Walters Art Museum, and the Thomases, owners of Mercantile Bank, are among the families that built handsome mansions along the four parks that surround the Washington Monument.
Emerging artist, Erick Antonio Benitez, the 2018 Janet and Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize winner, will have a gallery reception and artist talk with art critic, and curator, and poet Christopher Stackhouse to discuss his new exhibition, A City of Magic Carpets, currently on view at The Gallery in Baltimore City Hall.
1 West Mt. Vernon Place was host to many parties and intimate concerts during its long history as a historic home. David Hildebrand, Director of the Colonial Music Institute, will present a concert of period music from the 19th and 20th centuries that guests at the house would have heard during their social visits. Presented in partnership with the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University.
Baltimoreans celebrated atop Federal Hill when we ratified the U.S. Constitution. We used it to defend the city from the British in the War of 1812 and to make sure we stayed in the Union in the Civil War. We have even tunnelled under it to quarry minerals. Join us on a tour of Federal Hill and the neighborhood around it to learn about this waterfront community’s rich history, including stops at one of the last wooden houses in the city, the oldest house in Federal Hill, and the wonderful alley houses along Churchill Street.
Houdini died 92 years ago on Halloween and this will be the 91st consecutive Official Houdini Séance – and its first occurrence in Baltimore. Houdini performed in Maryland many times over his career – perhaps he will once again make an appearance!
Join us for an evening full of roving magicians, expert presentations, the official séance, and a spectacular finale. Enjoy wine and a light dinner (dietary laws observed).
Every first Thursday of the month visit us for free and take a collections highlights tour. Tours take place at 11 a.m. Explore the galleries with a member of our staff, hear the stories behind the artifacts on display and learn about Maryland’s rich history.
The last proprietary governor of Maryland, Sir Robert Eden (1741-1784) furnished his Annapolis mansion with expense and care in the hopes of making it the political and social center of the colony. The result was later described as “the best house in Annapolis,” but at the cost of considerable financial debt to the governor. Separated as a result of the American Revolutionary War, this presentation will examine the relationship of Robert Eden to his possessions and make a case for the place of objects in the historian’s understanding of the Loyalist experience.
Where can you find a piece of the Berlin Wall, a cannon ball mounted on a Conestoga wagon hitch, and over a hundred lions looking down at you from the tops of Baltimore's buildings? On our Downtown Landmarks and Lions tour, of course! In this leisurely stroll—we cover a little over a mile in a little over an hour—you’ll see and hear the highlights of downtown Baltimore’s history and architecture. Best of all, you'll discover where all the noble lions, hellish fiends, and neo-Egyptian sphinxes are hiding—the trick is in looking up!
As the Baltimore area transitioned from a primarily rural society into an industrial one, shipbuilding, milling of grain, spinning cloth and canning oysters become our city’s early focus. With access to raw materials and both skilled and unskilled labor, we became an industrial center in young America. As the city matured and grew, commercial activity of many kinds, along with iron working, railroading, and garment making became major economic forces. Along with the rise of early industry in Baltimore came a new way of life and changes in social aspects of living in an urban space.