Baltimore Morning Herald newspaper begins publication on northwest corner, St. Paul and East Fayette Streets with reporter H. L. Mencken and later editor. Building destroyed in Great Downtown Fire of four years later and closes. Mencken goes to "The Sun" where he later becomes legendary as editor, (on the later established afternoon paper, "The Evening Sun", which had a different format – more graphics and more local orientation in 1910), plus columnist, and as an author continuing his published volumes on linguistic history of the American language and usage, memoirs of growing up and working with city life in Baltimore.
1901 – Continental Trust Company Building, (now One South Calvert Building) at 201 East Baltimore Street, skyscraper of new style "fire-proof" masonry, exterior panels hung on a steel framework designed by famed Chicago architect Daniel H. Burnham (1846–1912), of the "Chicago School" of skyscraper architecture constructed at southeast corner of North Calvert and East Baltimore Streets, becoming city's tallest skyscraper for a time. "Burned like a torch" during later 1904 Great Fire of its interior furnishings and walls, but following post-fire examination, Burnham found exterior walls and steel framework still sound and so the building was restored in following years.
1903 – City's largest and most luxurious hostelry Hotel Belvedere opens, facing West Chase Street at North Charles Street in the Mount Vernon-Belvedere neighborhood, north of downtown. Named after colonial and Federal-era estate of "Belvidere" (site two blocks east at North Calvert Street in "Howard's Woods") of Col. John Eager Howard (1752–1827), Revolutionary War commander of "Maryland Line" regiment in the Continental Army. Overnight home for visiting American presidents, Hollywood stars and anybody really important. One of the most grandest, most luxurious establishments ever built in the city, known for its "John Eager Howard Room" with decorated murals for exquisite dining, "The Owl Bar", with its hand-carved owls atop a mahogany-carved bar, and later in the 1970s, a modernistic "13th Floor" roof-top night club with views of the Washington Monument and downtown to the south. Later renovated and restored in the early 1980s by philanthropist businessman Victor Frenkil as apartments/condos with a restoration of the public spaces/marble lobby/grand ballroom/restaurants/nightclubs.
Around the corner and a few blocks away, the Hotel Kernan, built by James Kernan (1838–1912), opened in this same year, later known several decades later as the Congress Hotel after Kernan's death. Facing West Franklin Street, between North Paca and west of North Howard Streets of Beaux Arts architecture Classical style. In the basement, was a "rathskeller" where the town's first "jazz band" music was led by a John Ridgley. Later it became known as the "marble bar" and continued as a cutting edge musical venue into the 1980s. Attached on the west side was the similarly elaborate Beaux Arts/Classical styled Maryland Theater, where many Hollywood stars appeared, which was later razed.
Memorial completed to the Baltimorean hero in the (1846–1848) Mexican–American War battle at Monterrey in 1846, Lt. Col. William H. Watson (1808/1815?-1846), commander of the "Baltimore Brigade" and the "District of Columbia Volunteers" who traveled to the Gulf of Mexico coastal port of Vera Cruz, Mexico with commanding Gen. Winfield Scott (1786–1866). With a bronze statue and stone pedestal dedicated, the Watson Monument was located first at the square in Mount Royal Avenue and West Lanvale Street (across from the future site of the Maryland Institute College of Art's new Main Building of three years later ). Col. Watson's statue was moved later in the early 1930s in anticipation for possible extension of North Howard Street several blocks further north to Mount Royal Terrace at the West North Avenue entrance driveway to Druid Hill Park, unfortunately now adjacent to an entrance ramp for the Jones Falls Expressway, (Interstate 83), built in the early 1960s.
1904 – Great Fire erupts early Sunday, February 7 to Monday, February 8, burning most of the downtown business district from South Howard Street in the west to Jones Falls in the east, continuing north to Fayette Street and Battle Monument Square in the north and to the waterfront piers along East Pratt Street facing "The Basin" (Inner Harbor) in the south. Third worst conflagration to hit an American city in history after the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 and the 1906 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire, followed by other weather disasters of Galveston Hurricane of 1900 and Hurricane Katrina at New Orleans in 2005. Additional help sent in from Baltimore County and nearby towns along with by railroad from nearby cities of Washington, Philadelphia and at the last New York City. Recent "fire-proof" modern skyscrapers built in the last decade had interiors "burn like a torch", but most were able to be rebuilt on steel frameworks and masonry exteriors. Streets widened and some reconfigured along with new underground utilities with added electrical conduits eliminating overhead lines on poles under authority of a newly appointed "Burnt District Commission". Generally only half of the number of previous downtown structures rebuilt with newer buildings taller and larger, along with new modern steel municipal piers, (numbers 1 to 6), constructed along Pratt Street waterfront. Maryland National Guard soldiers stationed downtown for next several weeks. Because of week-end, records/books for years afterwards recorded no lives lost although recent research in a local newspaper that had been overlooked, uncovered that an unidentified black man's body was found in the Jones Falls a week later. XXX buildings destroyed with XX millions of dollars lost and only XX covered by insurance. Reconstruction continues for next several years.
1906 – Maryland Institute, after having its longtime landmark 1851 building built over the old Centre Market ("Marsh Market") burned in the Great 1904 Fire, relocates most of its academic activities to a new "Main Building" in the northwest of the mid-town Mount Vernon-Belvedere-Mount Royal neighborhood at Mount Royal Avenue and West Lanvale Street, south of landmark Corpus Christi Roman Catholic Church on property donated by parishioner Michael Jenkins (of family of banking/railroad magnate Thomas Courtney Jenkins). Lt. Col. William F. Watson statue – Mexican War Memorial dedicated earlier in 1903 is located in the square across the street (moved later in the early 1930s, several blocks north to Mount Royal Terrace at West North Avenue entrance to Druid Hill Park). City of Baltimore later donates two floors above the northern structure of the three new parallel market buildings constructed on the east side facing Jones Falls at the old Market Place (Harrison Street) site for continuing its mechanical, drawing and technical courses, supervised by the new Centre Market Commission, headed by Gen. Felix Agnus, publisher of the longtime largest daily newspaper Baltimore American. New Centre Market buildings of 1906 with wholesale fish, produce and dry goods distributed below on ground levels and classrooms / offices, halls and academic areas on upper floors. Two of the three buildings (northern and southern) later razed in early 1980s for expressway extension for southern terminus of Jones Falls Expressway, (Interstate 83) and construction of underground ("Metro") subway system. Classes and studios of the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) consolidated further northwest to an extensive multi-building campus adjoining original 1906 "Main Building" along Mount Royal Avenue during the 1980s to 2010s. Fish Market (central market building in the middle) on Market Place is later renovated with "Port Discovery" children's museum and adjacent parking garage.
Homewood Field laid out and constructed for athletic contests at northern end of new north city campus for The Johns Hopkins University (JHU) at southwest corner of University Parkway and North Charles Street. JHU is moving from its older downtown campus since opening in 1876 along North Howard Street, between West Centre, Little Ross and West Monument Streets, in southwest area of Mount Vernon-Belvedere mid-town neighborhood. First academic buildings constructed were Gilman Hall and Shriver Hall, occupied in 1914–1915, with distinctive Georgian–Federal style architecture of red brick and white colonial wood trim with cupolas and steeples on a park-like campus on donated former William Wyman estate of Wyman Villa and adjacent Homewood House. Situated between North Charles Street and newly laid out and renamed University Parkway (former Merryman's Lane), northwest of 1870s era north city neighborhood of Peabody Heights (later renamed Charles Village in 1967) and near Stony Run stream and east of new Wyman Park. Besides staging future "Blue Jays" collegiate athletic contests here, some public and private high school games are played here such as between City College and Polytechnic Institute for their long-time football rivalry since 1889, which began a few years earlier at Clifton Park, also sports contests Calvert Hall College versus Loyola High School by the 1920s, and others in the local public-private schools athletic league Maryland Scholastic Association since 1919.
City Department of Legislative Reference established, with offices and reference library/files in Baltimore City Hall.
Reconstruction continues of "Centre Market" area on Market Place (former old Harrison Street and colonial site of "Harrison's Marsh") in east downtown after devastation from Great Fire with three adjacent (east-west axis) wholesale market buildings for produce, fish, dry-goods and some retail with space for Maryland Institute's College of Art and Design on upper two floors of northern building under leadership of new Centre Market Commission, headed by chairman, Gen. Felix Agnus, owner/publisher of the Baltimore American evening daily newspaper with marble horse-drinking fountain in middle of square donated by animal-lover, Gen. A. E. Booth. Razing of several buildings and further re-development later in the mid-1980s by "Six Flags Over America" as entertainment/restaurant/taverns complex named "The Brokerage" at northern end of plaza, and then again in the mid-1990s by the David Cordish Company renamed as "Power Plant Live!" (for old streetcar electrical generating plant of 1900–1903 one block south on Pratt Street).
Cornerstone laid for new Central Building of Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) at northeast corner of East Franklin and Cathedral Streets in Mount Vernon-Belvedere neighborhood and "Cathedral Hill" (founded in Baltimore in 1852 and previously located in triangular Victorian styled structure at northwest corner of West Saratoga and North Charles Street, built 1872–1873). New YMCA at former site of George Hoffman's Greek Revival mansion built in the 1820s (one of first constructed on the estate of Col. John Eager Howard, "Belvidere" or "Howard's Woods", with later
development by his sons and heirs. The mansion itself survives until the 1870s at the present intersection of North Calvert and East Chase Streets) and later used from 1857 to 1894 for the Southern-sympathizing Maryland Club for male elites (which was threatened by Union Army-occupying Gen. Benjamin F. Butler to shoot any visible Rebel flags off the roof from the newly fortified Fort Federal Hill in May 1861). Across street to the west was the Franklin Street Presbyterian Church and north of old Baltimore Cathedral designed by Benjamin Henry Latrobe. Also cross-corner from future expansion site in 1931–1933 of central/main branch of the Enoch Pratt Free Library on Cathedral Street from first Central Library building of 1882–1886, further south on corner with West Mulberry Street. Opening in 1909, new Central YMCA functions with many social and athletic activities for nearly 70 years with its indoor pool, gymnasium, athletic rooms, dormitories, kitchen/cafeterias, and classrooms. Later a separate "Colored YMCA" opens in northwestern inner city area of Upton on Druid Hill Avenue. One block west on Franklin Street at Park Avenue was also central headquarters of companion agency Young Women's Christian Association, (YWCA). Later in 1984, YMCA of Central Maryland reorganized facilities and closed the Central Headquarters which were later converted into the Mount Vernon Hotel and Café.
New building completed for the all-girls, academic-business oriented Eastern High School at the southeast corner of Broadway and East North Avenue in the northeast corner of the city. Unfortunately, one of the last major high schools built right up to the street and sidewalk with no adjoining campus for other activities. Later Eastern moves to another new building in 1938 at 33rd Street boulevard and Loch Raven Boulevard in the former Venable Park (which stirs up political controversy by citizens and nearby residents). Saving municipal budget monies during the Great Depression, new E.H.S. matched the architecture and construction diagrams of the sister school Western High at Gwynns Falls Parkway off Reisterstown Road/Park Heights Avenue from 1927 in northwest Baltimore.
New headquarters building of Classical/Beaux Arts architecture built on the southwest corner of South Charles and East Baltimore Streets, an intersection which becomes known for the next half-century as "Sun Square", and the central geographic point of the city, for the rebuilt offices and printing plant completed this year after the Great Baltimore Fire of February 1904, devastated the previous "Sun Iron Building" of 1851 (at East Baltimore and South Streets) for the twice-daily newspaper The Sun and The Evening Sun (also known colloquially as The Sunpapers). Sun's building lasts until the mid-1960s and replaced in the "Charles Center" downtown redevelopment project of 1958–1970 by the also later landmark Morris A. Mechanic Theatre of poured-concrete Brutalist Modernist style adjoining new Hopkins Plaza in middle of block.
Across the street on the southeast corner of East Baltimore and South Charles is the new Greco–Roman styled "Temple of Thrift" of white marble with massive columns, steps and porticoes is built for the old Savings Bank of Baltimore (SSB), founded 1818, with a different structure and mission compared to the city's other large financial institutions. The SSB is oriented towards small customers of savers and depositers. The Bank lasts until the 1990s bank merger and out-of-town take-over mania, building a newer skyscraper two blocks further east at North Calvert and East Baltimore Streets' iconic northwest corner, renames itself, dropping the term "Savings" and is shortly taken over by "SunTrust". Its old landmark offices become central to a charity organization.
1908 – Washington, Baltimore and Annapolis Electric Railway ("inter-urban" electric rail cars) begins operating on a triangular route through Anne Arundel County from the state capital to "The Monumental City" and then to Washington, D.C.. Line opens February 7, 1908 from its Baltimore station on Liberty Street (between West Lexington and West Fayette Streets) to Washington's 15th and 'H' Streets, N.E. and then to Annapolis. In 1921, City terminal is relocated to southwest corner of South Howard and West Lombard Streets (later site of today's Holiday Inn hotel). Sold at auction in 1935, later owners form Baltimore and Annapolis Railroad Company operating commuter diesel buses up to the early 1970s from the state capital to Brooklyn in South Baltimore.
Art Gallery building constructed by financier and philanthropist Henry Walters (1848–1931), built and opened at northwest corner of North Charles and East Centre Streets, facing the south square of Washington Place, to house and exhibit his personal extensive collection of art amassed by him over decades along with previous acquisitions of his father, William Thompson Walters (1820–1894). Structure built across the back alley from their brownstone mansion facing north towards West Mount Vernon Place in the Mount Vernon-Belvedere neighborhood, and facing the Washington Monument to the north and east. Occasionally for the next two decades, the gallery since its original 1909 construction is opened for viewing by the Baltimore public. After Walters' 1931 death, the Gallery with its collection of paintings, statuary, tapestries, jewels, and thousands of items, one of America's greatest collections, is willed to the City of Baltimore and a museum established, along with the neighboring family mansion and an endowment. An additional modernistic annex is constructed to the west along West Centre Street to Park Avenue at rear in 1974, and later addition of the former Thomas-Jencks-Gladding Mansion to the north, facing the Monument at its southwest corner, to house Asian art in 1982, with the new name of "Hackerman House", named for donor Willard Hackerman.
The Telegraf is founded as a newspaper for the Czech community of Baltimore.
1911 – Pennsylvania Station (Baltimore) (first known as "Union Station" until 1928) constructed of elaborate imposing Beaux Arts/Classical style architecture with beautiful marble interior atrium surmounted by a stained glass skylight and rookwood green wall tiles built for the use of several passenger rail lines including the Pennsylvania Railroad, the Western Maryland Railway and later the B. & O. (besides their nearby Mount Royal Station, a few blocks southwest). Replaced earlier Victorian styled Union Station from 1873, second terminal rebuilt 1881, on same site also used by the several railroads after the construction then of the connecting underground Baltimore and Potomac Railroad tunnels under, through and around northern, northwestern and northeastern Baltimore City (known as the "Belt Line"), so as not to have steam, smoke-blowing locomotives pulling through downtown streets (later shortly replaced by electric then diesel locomotives) or the system since the 1830s of horse-drawn railcars between stations. Connected with the B. & O.'s Howard Street Tunnel of 1890–1895, going north and south under downtown. Sited between North Charles Street and Calvert Street, north of Mount Royal Avenue and the community of Mount Vernon-Belvedere-Mount Royal, along curving bend of north bank of the Jones Falls. Later used also by other regional and national passenger rail lines until major bankruptcies with reorganization of national railroads in 1970 with Amtrak passenger system. Cleaned, refurbished and restored in the early 1980s. Neighborhood north of the station along North Avenue, which had been generally known as "Mid-Town", given neighborhood name of "Penn-North-Charles", and later renamed in the 2010s as "Station North" with creation of supporting "community benefits district" zone organization.
Two office building tower skyscrapers with distinctive clocks are simultaneously constructed and finished this year on the east and west sides of Downtown Baltimore. The Tower Building for the Maryland Casualty Company on East Baltimore Street and Guilford Avenue in the east and the Bromo Seltzer Tower for the Emerson Drug Company on the west side at the northeast corner of West Lombard and South Paca Streets. Emerson's building is surmounted by a huge electric bulb lighted revolving blue steel replica of the headache remedy bottle revolving on top, at the inspiration of magnate Capt. Isaac Edward Emerson which when lighted up was visible for miles down the Chesapeake Bay. The famous "Blue Bottle" endures until 1936 when it unfortunately was cut up and removed because of structural instability in the building.
Construction begins on additional buildings of ("Aldersaal" [parish house/social hall], bell tower, parsonage, and enclosed gardens) at Old Zion Lutheran Church, downtown across from City Hall along East Lexington Street west from North Gay Street (facing later 1920s War Memorial Building and City Hall Plaza to commemorate all war dead).
City's public math-science and technical school, Baltimore Polytechnic Institute relocates from old building on east side of Courtland Street near East Saratoga Street (future redeveloped St. Paul Place/Street and "Preston Gardens" constructed in 1920s – older building later used by new Baltimore City Department of Public Welfare and razed by 1963 for westward expansion for Mercy Hospital from Calvert Street) to the former campus and mansion from 1866 of the Maryland School for the Blind at East North Avenue and North Calvert Street. "Old Poly" has two additional wings are added to the east and west in the Beaux Arts/Classical style of architecture. Additional central wing replaces old M.S.B. mansion by 1931 with additional auditorium/gymnasium wing further east. Blind School relocates 1911–1913 to park-like campus in Overlea section of northeast Baltimore County. Polytechnic resides here for five and a half decades before joining all-girls Western High School in joint campus in north Baltimore at West Cold Spring Lane and Falls Road in 1967. Renamed later as Calvert Educational Center, structure hold variety of educational uses until major gutting, renovation and remodeling as central headquarters for the Baltimore City Public Schools in the 1980s, as "Alice G. Pinderhughes Administrative Building" for former superintendent, replacing previous 1930s-era offices at 25th Street, between Charles and St. Paul Streets.
New routing and construction of the Francis Scott Key Highway (known as "Key Highway" for short) from Light Street at "The Basin" (today's Inner Harbor) to the east along north and east sides of Federal Hill and continued along northern shore of Whetstone Point peninsula on south bank of Northwest Branch of Patapsco River to Baltimore Harbor. The highway with narrow median strip constructed of concrete surface with occasional older cobblestone sections with railroad tracks imbedded for pier access, continues southeast towards Locust Point port terminals and adjacent residential community and passes under overhead bridge for Fort Avenue, curves back to the west and extends west to South Hanover Street, completely surrounding the old South Baltimore rowhouse residential communities. Serving as a by-pass for industrial and port facilities truck traffic in the future automotive age along with directing anticipated historical tourism traffic towards historic Fort McHenry at end of peninsula, recently leased to the City from the U.S. War Department of the now decommissioned antique and obsolete military reservation, which establishes a city park in the following year, as part of the National Star Spangled Banner Centennial Celebration.
Major public works construction project of building new "Fallsway" highway over former stream of Jones Falls which is directed beneath in two concrete conduit tunnels from Mount Royal Avenue and Pennsylvania Station to the north flowing south to Fayette Street where once again flows between two stone canal walls further south to Patapsco River Northwest Branch.
Hippodrome Theatre built on Eutaw Street between West Fayette and Redwood Streets and shows early silent movies and burlesque live shows, later after 1927 with "talkies" sound movies. Closed, run-down and abandoned after the 1970s with several other major downtown movie palaces. Restored, renovated and re-opened in the 2010s as new performing arts center replacing earlier Morris A. Mechanic Theatre (at southwest corner of South Charles Street and West Baltimore Street, part of Charles Center downtown re-development project of the 1950s and 60s), with live theatre and Broadway theatre shows. Theatre renovation combined with two neighboring bank buildings completing larger new theatre complex on entire block.
"Star Spangled Banner Centennial Celebration" observed in Baltimore for the 100th Anniversary of the War of 1812 (1812–1815), campaign with the Battle of Baltimore and Battle of North Point during September 12–14, 1914. Parades, decorated buildings, dedications of new commemorative monuments and statues, along with publication of commemorative book. Fort McHenry on Whetstone Point, adjacent to the nearby rowhouse neighborhood of Locust Point turned over to be leased by the City of Baltimore's newly organized Department of Recreation and Parks for use as a public park by the U.S. War Department. Later taken back by the Federal Government in three years with the advent of U.S. entry into World War I in April 1917, for immediate and emergency use as United States Army General Hospital Number Two when a large complex of temporary wooden structures/barracks, concrete/brick medical and surgical facilities and additional army post buildings are erected surrounding the historic "star fort" and used until war ends in 1919, then later returned to the City again as a park when post-war medical operations conclude and hospital buildings and driveways are razed by 1923. Later becomes national monument in 1925, with dedication of "Orpheus" musical and poetic Greek god monument by 28th President Warren G. Harding, with additional status as national shrine in 1939, administered by new National Park Service established 1916 in the U.S. Department of the Interior.
1915 – Municipal anthem, "Baltimore, Our Baltimore", written by poet Folger McKinsey, columnist for "The Sun", known as the "Bentztown Bard" from Frederick, Maryland, with music by Mrs. Emma Hemberger, (wife of Theodor)a foremost musical composer in the city, having won first place in a contest during the year 1915, with entries to be presented by December 1, sponsored by Mayor James H. Preston with a prize of $250 in gold, one for the best original poem and another for the best musical setting. Judges for the contest were Harold Randolph – Director of the Peabody Institute-Conservatory of Music, Henrietta Baker Low – former Supervisor of Music for the Baltimore City Public Schools, and John Itzel – composer and orchestra conductor. During a concert of various musical pieces, both instrumental and vocal presented, the winning song of four verses was later announced and performed for the first time with a small group of orchestral pieces, a concert choir "The United Singers" assisted by 300 local high school girls at the Lyric Opera House on Mount Royal Avenue, at Cathedral Street, before an audience of notables, "Washington's Birthday", February 22, 1916. Required for a long time afterwards to be taught in all city schools and to be at least familiar to conductors and leaders of any city musical groups, orchestras or bands and sung at any ceremony, dedication, parades or official program, on city, state and national holidays events, including regular concerts by the Municipal Park Band with its summertime extravaganzas and other events sponsored by the City Department of Recreation and Parks (which included a Bureau of Music – unusual for most major U.S. cities). It however, suffered later periods of neglect. By the 1960s, longtime city comptroller and gadfly Hyman A. Pressman and former Mayor and Governor of Maryland, William Donald Schaefer, called for it frequently, leading to a renaissance of familiarity in later decades. Occasionally it joined the singing of the state's controversial but interesting anthem, "Maryland, My Maryland", by James Ryder Randall, from a tumultuous Civil War era in 1861.
Maryland State Normal School, founded 1866, first located briefly at Red Man's Hall on North Paca Street, then former William Howard Greek Revival mansion, (later by 1863 becomes Union/Athenaeum Club) at northeast corner of North Charles and East Franklin Streets. Teachers' school then relocated by the 1870s to West Baltimore at Lafayette Square, at Layfayette and Carollton Avenues in large structure built for it. Moves to new extensive park-like campus in county seat of suburban Baltimore County, south of Towson on west side of York Road (Maryland Route 45). General Assembly of Maryland passes a $600,000 bond issue in April 1912, making the teachers' school the largest building initiative up to that time in the state. Administration Building first constructed (later renamed Stephens Hall), along with Newell Hall student dormitory, and two subsequent halls in red brick English Tudor / Jacobethan style architecture and nearby power plant. Neighboring mansion "Glen Esk" used for president's residence. New campus opens after two-year construction in September 1915. Additional similarly styled structures facing east towards York Road built with Richardson Hall and a few others, for a temporarily unified appearance. Additional teachers colleges opened later in other sections of Maryland. In later years, "normal," school is renamed several times, as Maryland State Teachers College at Towson in 1935, then Towson State College by 1963, later elevated to Towson State University and finally Towson University. Second largest college/university in the state by the 2010s.
Fort Holabird (initially named Camp Holabird) established along southeast city waterfront for World War I effort, joined by Camp Meade further south near Annapolis Junction in Anne Arundel County. Famous military "general purpose" vehicle (nicknamed later as the "jeep"), tested on dirt tracks during 1941–1942 at Holabird. Meade later becomes center of post-war electronic intelligence gathering in the National Security Agency, headquartered here.
Hanover Street Bridge designed and supervised construction by noted city/state bridge engineer John E. Greiner (later led construction and bridge firm) completed in January with passage of special electric streetcar "Maryland" from United Railways after three-year project across the Middle Branch/Ferry Branch of the Patapsco River and Baltimore Harbor. Connecting old South Baltimore/Whetstone Point peninsula from Ferry Bar/Point across to northern Anne Arundel County at Brooklyn with causeway for extended South Hanover Street (and later parallel Potee Street) on an earthen berm around the western shore of the branch and also across Western Branch flowing east from Elkridge/Ellicott City of the upper Patapsco. New concrete-arched bridge replaced old Light Street Bridge, long wooden trestle built 1856, (also known as "Long Bridge" or "Brooklyn Bridge") to Brooklyn and further to industrial area of Curtis Bay across the river. Bridge connects further south to Baltimore-Annapolis Road (later Gov. Ritchie Highway after 1936). Modern connection highlights benefits of future city annexation of southern suburban areas in Anne Arundel two years later.
Early organization during World War I-era of musical opera lovers formed and named Baltimore Opera Society by conductor David S. Melamet with Barron Berthald of New York as stage manager. An outgrowth of his Melamet Opera Class. Continued on through the 1920s putting on productions at the Lyric Opera House (1894) on Mount Royal Avenue with casts composed of Baltimoreans with an occasional New York guest from the "Met". After his death, the local company was continued by Eugene Martinet (founder of Martinet School of Opera in 1927) who reorganized, directed and conducted. Later succeeded by several other companies and then in 1950 with the Baltimore Civic Opera Company, organized and inspired by local famous opera singer Rosa Ponselle who later retired in northern Baltimore County.
Last casualty of World War I on the Western Front in northwestern France is a Baltimorean, Private Henry Gunther of the 313th Regiment, "Baltimore's Own" at Ville-devant-Chaumont, area of Lorraine on "Armistice" at the "eleventh hour, of eleventh day and eleventh month". His unit had only been in combat for two months and had just been told of the end of the war just fifteen minutes earlier because of a foul-up with the couriers. Pvt. Gunther was shot by burst of machine gun fire from Germans' 31st Prussian Army, when he ran at their lines, one minute before the 11 am. Cease-Fire, November 11, 1918. Was a former supply sergeant who had recently been demoted for violating mail censorship rules by writing in a letter home that conditions on the line were intolerable and suggested he not enlist. Was depressed and seemed to try to want to redeem himself. Gunther was from recent German immigrants in East Baltimore's Highlandtown, not wanting to attack former countrymen of his, a former bank teller and clerk at the National Bank of Baltimore with a fiancé and had been drafted in September 1917, not volunteering immediately when war was declared in April 1917. Later U.S. Army restored his sergeant's rank and awarded him the "Distinguished Service Cross" and a unit citation. Later a local Post #1858 of the Veterans of Foreign Wars was named for him, the last American killed in "the war to end all wars".
William F. Broening (1870–1953), a Republican, elected mayor and serves to 1923. Unusual interlude of city political power for the Republican Party in the predominantly Democratic-voting city. After his mayoralty, Broening Highway, is named for him where later a large General Motors auto/truck assembly plant is constructed facing the highway in southeast Baltimore and a small waterfront Broening Park named for him and established southeast of the now landmark concrete-arched Hanover Street Bridge of 1914–1917 (later renamed Vietnam Veterans Memorial Bridge in the 1990s) across the Middle and Ferry Branches of the main Patapsco River and Baltimore Harbor. Parallel causeways carrying South Hanover and Potee Streets (and Maryland Route 2) lead south to Brooklyn and Curtis Bay industrial and residential communities. Baltimore and Maryland Yacht Clubs and several sculling/rowing teams build their clubhouses here along southwestern shores and hold river races. Later parkland expanded along Western (or Ferry Branch) leading from upper Patapsco with narrowing width with filling-in nearby marshes for Cherry Hill/Reedbird Park, south of the Cherry Hill neighborhood into larger shoreline "Middle Branch Park" beginning in the 1980s.
Public Library Association formed in Annapolis, later develops into county-wide system for Anne Arundel County. City of Annapolis allows space in historic Reynolds Tavern on Church Circle by 1936. Additional library association forms in northern county in Glen Burnie by 1923 and opens in front room of Masonic Temple.
1920 – Citizens National Bank skyscraper tower erected at southwest corner of Light Street (additional postal address at 7 East Redwood [previously long-time name of German Street before World War I] Streets), succeeding Bromo-Seltzer Tower and Maryland Casualty Company's Tower Building (both with large landmark clocks on the east and west sides of downtown business district) as the city's tallest building until 1929 and construction of Baltimore Trust's "Art Deco"style tower one block north. Later becomes headquarters of prominent First National Bank of Maryland (one of the largest financial institutions in the state), until flurry of bank mergers and out-of-town take-overs in the 2000s. Old Citizens National has the most beautiful, elaborate banking room/lobby in the city. Now occupied by the Municipal Employees Credit Union of Baltimore City (MECU).
First of annual football game played November 12 of traditional rivalry between Roman Catholic high schools – Calvert Hall College (Christian Brothers) and Loyola High School (Jesuits (Society of Jesus)) in the public-private high school sports league Maryland Scholastic Association founded the previous year. Calvert Hall-Loyola joins other long-time local rivalries such as City-Poly, McDonogh-Gilman, Mt. St. Joseph's-Patterson Park, and Forest Park-Southern, and colleges such as Hopkins-Maryland (College Park) and Hopkins-Navy. Beginning in the 1920s with large crowds of spectators at local athletic fields/stadiums and local media coverage for sports fans in a city at a time previous to the organization of nationwide professional sports teams and leagues.
Royal Theatre opens on Pennsylvania Avenue in northwestern inner city neighborhood of Upton. Becomes center for Negro/Black/African-American entertainment, concerts and performances and focal point of that cultural district in the 1920s to the 1960s.
Glen Burnie Library Association formed in northern Anne Arundel County, two years after opening of Annapolis Library, with Mrs. Samuel Boone as president. Front room of recently built Masonic Temple offered and opened in December on Wednesday and Saturday evenings. Beginnings of future Annapolis and Anne Arundel County Public Library system, in suburban areas south of Baltimore. By following year, Maryland Public Library Commission gives aid to various institutions established.
After a nation-wide architectural design competition two years earlier won by local firm of Buckler and Fenhagen, construction begins on new boys high school of The Baltimore City College of Collegiate Gothic stone architecture with dominating 150-foot bell tower on 33rd Street Boulevard. Commanding hilltop land site was previously former estate near old "Montebello" early 1800s mansion of old War of 1812 commanding General Samuel Smith, in Battle of Baltimore (General, U.S. Senator, City Mayor) and adjacent hill-top site of "Abbottston" and "Woodlands", 1870s era wood-frame Victorian style twin/duplex mansions of Civil War era Canton Ironworks foundry industrialist Horace Abbott, (later known as the Gilman-Cate estate), to replace second overcrowded second B.C.C. structure at North Howard and West Centre Streets (buildings of 1875–1892 and subsequent 1895) and a temporary 25th Street Annex.
University of Baltimore founded as private independent school, with Law School and later business school added, around urban streets-grid campus by Mount Royal and Cathedral Street/Maryland Avenues in northwest of Mount Vernon-Belvedere-Mount Royal mid-town community. Later purchased by state with 1971 agreement and merges in 1975 with University System of Maryland as an upper-division (junior and senior years of college), greatly expanding its mid-town campus to additional urban center.
WBAL radio begins broadcasting as a "clear channel" regional powerful AM radio station at 1090 on the dial.
Municipal Bureau of Archives (later known as Baltimore City Archives) established. Located in several different locations / sites in the next century. Part of Baltimore City Department of Legislative Reference, established earlier in 1907.
New building and expansive park-like campus for Western High School for girls built with an academic-business curriculum, (founded 1844 with twin sister Eastern High) with 'H' shaped, three-stories English Tudor/Gothic Revival style architecture of red brick and limestone trim. Located in northwest Baltimore at new Gwynns Falls Parkway at intersection with Reisterstown Road/Park Heights Avenue. Across street from "Mondawmin" – one of the last rural summer estates of wealthy Baltimoreans in the city. This large landscaped property estate of old Alexander and George Brown (when last resident descendant died in 1948), noted financiers of old downtown firm Alex. Brown & Sons at southwest corner of East Baltimore and South Calvert Streets. "Mondawmin" 1840s era mansion / estate razed in middle 1950s and replaced by development of Mondawmin Mall by later nationally famous James Rouse (who also built "Harborplace" in nner Harbor during 1979–1980. Architectural plans for Western High were re-used a decade later to save money during "Great Depression" for twin-sister school Eastern High, built across town on 33rd Street Boulevard in 1938 next to City College's "Castle on the Hill". WHS occupies Gwynns Falls Parkway building until 1955, when it is turned over to Frederick Douglass High School and Western relocates temporarily for a decade to old B.C.C. building of 1895 at Howard and Centre Streets, downtown.
New public high school building for boys for The Baltimore City College opened April 10, after a six years long planning and construction project, at 33rd Street and The Alameda in stone Collegiate Gothic palace with 150-foot bell tower in northeast city on expansive 39 acre park-like, hill-top campus of old "Abbotston/Gilman-Cate" Victorian era estate of Canton iron foundry industrialist Horace Abbott (from the Civil War era), overlooking city from the northeast. New City College, soon nicknamed "The Castle on the Hill", is one of the most expensive schools ever built in America up to that time envisioned also to have inter-connecting 'E'-shaped wings for lower schools on elementary/junior high levels along with southern-side sports stadium, which were only built decades later. B.C.C., founded 1839 in downtown as the third oldest public high school in the country, then considered the capstone and flagship school for the Baltimore City Public Schools, first established in 1829.
1929 – Baltimore Trust Company tower under construction for five years completed at 10 Light Street between East Baltimore and Redwood (previously German) Streets with distinctive Art Deco architecture becomes downtown landmark for almost 90 years and city's tallest structure until the 1970s (with the USF&G Building in 1971 and copper colored Merritt Tower / William Donald Schaefer Tower in the 1980s. Has several names designated in its history: Mathieson Building, O'Sullivan Building, Maryland National Bank Building, NationsBank Building, and now Bank of America Tower in 2012. Conversion project in 2014 to residential usage after B of A moves main Maryland banking headquarters elsewhere downtown and becomes apartments/condos named for street address of 10 Light Street.
Baltimore has 200th Bicentennial Celebration this year of founding and laying out of original town in 1729/1730 with various events, parades and publication of anniversary historical commemorative book. Other major anniversary celebrations observed in 1880 for 150th year of town's founding and later Centennial observations in 1896–1897 for Centennial of incorporation as a city, and later in 1997 for similar Biccentennial anniversary.
Death of philanthropist Henry Walters, (1848–1931), leaving the famous international art collection amassed by him and his father William T. Walters, (1820–1894), and the 1905–1909 Gallery building he had built at northwest corner of North Charles Street and West Centre Street, and an endowment, along with his mansion home across the side alley to the north on West Mount Vernon Place to the citizens of the City of Baltimore. Later known as the Walters Art Gallery (renamed Walters Art Museum in 2000s) and opened to the public permanently in 1934.
Municipal Office Building of simple "Art Deco" limestone construction on 300 block Holliday Street, between East Saratoga and Lexington Streets, north of the 1867–75 Baltimore City Hall. Later renamed in the 1980s for nationally famous and noted city engineer, Abel Wolman, (1892–1989), who designed most of the urban public drinking water and sewage treatment systems at Back River and Patapsco treatment plants for the city in the early 20th century.
First ordinance of a city zoning code passed by the Baltimore City Council upon earlier enabling act passed by the General Assembly of Maryland in 1927, for certain larger cities and towns in the state. Zoning Commission and Board of Zoning Appeals set up and begins first attempts at controlling growth, construction, demolitions and maintenance of city public and private properties.
1933 – Devastating hurricane storm lasting almost a week in August, does substantial damage to Baltimore and Washington's budding summer resort of the small town of Ocean City, in Worcester County, driving a "storm surge" through the long sandy barrier island and cutting an inlet/passageway of fifty feet wide and 8 feet deep through between Assateague Island to the south and now Sinepuxent Island to the north of the town. Later decades sees this natural event affecting the growth and residential/commercial development plus increasing the recreational attractions for swimming, fishing and boating with close access between the back bay and oceanfront. Additional number of Baltimoreans visit the ocean now with improved transportation across the Eastern Shore and leads to a decline of Chesapeake Bay beaches, resorts and towns. Later Assateague Island across the channel to the south towards Virginia's Chincoteague Island is preserved as a national seashore and an additional Maryland state park in its primitive natural state.
1934 – Walters Art Gallery with collections amassed by financiers/philanthropists William T. Walters, (1820–1894) and his son Henry Walters, (1848–1931), who built an "Italian Palazzo" design by architect William Adams Delano (1878–1960), during 1904–1909, and opened in 1909 to occasional public visits. Now their later donation and endowment under will of recently deceased Henry Walters in 1931, opens three years later after bequest as an institution under the City of Baltimore, in the gallery museum (designed by architect William Adams Delano (1878–1960), located on the northwest corner of North Charles and West Centre Streets, facing south Washington Place, just south of and around the Washington Monument, and also donates to the new City museum, their mansion, across the side alley to the southern rear which faced north on West Mount Vernon Place/West Monument Street. A substantial 1974 addition of modernistic architecture was later added to the western side of the original building along West Centre Street towards Park Avenue. In the 1980s, an additional townhouse/mansion (the former Jencks-Thomas-Gladding Mansion) to the north of the Gallery, facing the Monument at the southwest corner of North Charles and West Mount Vernon Place (West Monument Street), was added for the new Asian Art collection and renamed "Hackerman House" for later city construction builder and philanthropist Willard Hackerman.
1934 – Groundbreaking in the Fall by Mayor Howard W. Jackson and GM auto officials of a massive new site for Chevrolet Motor Company, division of General Motors Corporation of Detroit, Michigan for an assembly and fabrication plant for automobiles at Broening Highway (subsequently named for former two terms mayor William F. Broening [1870–1953]) in southeast city area. Plant opens in 1935 and begins over 85 years of car and trucks manufacturing in Baltimore and longtime labor representation by the United Auto Workers.
New structure for Eastern High School (EHS), all-girls traditional academic-business curriculum school. Located at 33rd Street boulevard at Loch Raven Boulevard in former Venable Park (stirs up political controversy) in northeast section of town next to decade-old City College's "Castle on the Hill", all-male high school. Same plans used a decade earlier for twin sister's new Western High, builds similar 'H'-shaped, three stories of English Tudor/Gothic Revival / Jacobethan styles of architecture of red brick and limestone trim in a 30-acre park-like campus in south portion of old Venable Park on 33rd Street boulevard at Loch Raven Boulevard. Later civic sports project for new Memorial Stadium across 33rd to the north, rebuilt in 1950–1954 for major league baseball's team of the new Baltimore Orioles and pro football's team of the Baltimore Colts across street on previous site of old Municipal Stadium from 1922, built for high school/college football. EHS resides here until sad closure and half-way unsuccessful merger with new Lake Clifton High School several miles away in 1984, destroying 140 years of an all-female tradition in secondary education, leaving only Western High to continue at new 1967 campus shared with Polytechnic Institute at northwest corner of West Cold Spring Lane and Falls Road.
At 5:00 pm on New Year's Eve, December 31, Capt. Leon Joyce takes the 4 to 5-minute journey for the last time on the ferryboat "Howard W. Jackson" across the Baltimore Inner Harbor from the foot of Broadway in Fells Point to Haubert Street in Locust Point. It's the last sailing of the locally famous Locust Point Ferry, running for 125 years since 1813, eliminating a municipal cost of $25,000 dollars a year, charging cents for children, 7 cents for adults, 22 cents for a car. Up to the early 1930s, between a hundred to four hundred customers a day used the ferry, avoiding the heavy car traffic through downtown and the notorious intersection at Pratt and Light Streets.
Construction and opening of "Art Deco" styled, the Senator Theatre in Govans on York Road commercial district in northern outskirts at intersection with Belvedere Avenue (and south of newer parallel 1960s by-pass, Northern Parkway). By late 1970s becomes one of the last neighborhood movie theatres in the city with large main auditorium, but continues to show and premiere new films. Becomes iconic and landmark due to its architecture and "last of its kind", plus establishment in the early 1980s of front sidewalk gallery under marque of pavement blocks with names and logos of movies with hands or feet of starring actors and actresses (similar to famous Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, motion picture-making district in Los Angeles). Similar architecture of larger even more elaborate Art Deco features at old Ambassador Theatre on Liberty Heights Avenue near Howard Park neighborhood in northwest area which later has an interior-gutting fire and later becomes a fundamentalist Protestant church. Old Senator celebrates anniversary of opening every year with showing of feature films from the 1939-era and also charging ticket prices of the era (25 cents). After working 30 years for long-planned renovation project, two additional smaller adjacent auditoriums added using similar tan brick exteriors in 2013 for more financial flexibility and restoration of interior under new owners from the Charles Theatre, located on North Charles Street below North Avenue, in newly designated Station North neighborhood in Mid-Town.
Formation of a Baltimore County Library Association, Inc. (BCLA) to coordinate various small community libraries in County towns/suburbs circling around Baltimore City (like a "horseshoe") established by various women's clubs and civic associations in last two decades. New BCLA also to lobby Baltimore County's Board of County Commissioners (then small local governing structure) for an official county public library and constructions of buildings similar to the expansive Enoch Pratt Free Library system in the City, which county residents had also been using and taking advantage of since its earlier establishment in 1882–1886, with a new central library rebuilt downtown in 1931–1933 with many neighborhood branches, later constructions near city-county border. Political and civic pressure builds until post-World War II period in 1948 with establishment of Baltimore County Public Library system with existing branches and many additional improvements in later decades to almost equalize ancestor/neighbor Enoch Pratt.
1940 – Entire mill village with factory, houses, stores and school situated on upper Patapsco River's Western Branch between Baltimore County and Carroll County, founded as Elysville and then known as Alberton for several decades, sold at auction in November to C.R. Daniels Company which reopens industry and renames town as Daniels. Operations and town endure until disastrous flood and storm damage from Tropical Storm Agnes in June 1972 which does incredibly heavy damage to Patapsco River Valley, adjacent Baltimore and Ohio Railroad main western line and throughout state and Mid-Atlantic region. Daniels town is later razed with most of residential and commercial structures with only small industrial and recycling business in vicinity afterwards.
Debut of new AM radio station WITH at 1230 on the dial on March 1 with a downtown parade on Howard Street in the retail/department stores district. An independent station not affiliated with any of the several big nation-wide broadcasting networks. WITH has a different programming of music records with occasional newscast on the hour with Tom Tinsley and station manager Robert "Jake" Embry – a first in Baltimore unlike other competing stations with networks. Introducing new ideas and personalities, a forerunner of future programming formats in the late 1950s after the introduction of television
Liberty ship"S.S. Patrick Henry" is the first of 2,700 such ships (one-sixth of the total built by America) launched September 27 from newly outfitted Bethlehem-Fairfield shipyards in Fairfield area of South Baltimore on Middle Branch of Patapsco River of Baltimore Harbor, one of 13 nation-wide shipyards established under leadership of aluminum, steel and auto industrialist Henry J. Kaiser, and cooperating industries such as the Bethlehem Steel Corporation (who owned and operated nearby steel mill at Sparrows Point across the river near Dundalk), with construction revolutionary mass-produced cargo ships on an automobile-style assembly line that are welded together rather than using rivets for speed. "Patrick Henry" ship launching ceremonies serenaded by the Baltimore Civic Band, with a special radio address by 32nd President Franklin D. Roosevelt, the "Henry" was christened by the wife of Vice President Henry A. Wallace, with Rear Adm. Emory Land, head of the Maritime Commission giving the keynote address. One of 14 ships that were launched that special "Liberty Fleet Day". The Henry's ship's keel was earlier laid April 30 and was later commissioned to the merchant marine fleet on December 30. By the end of the war, with maximum effort, the shipyard was turning out dozens per week (one every 35 hours). Later the "Henry" would serve throughout the war, helping to win the crucial "Battle of the Atlantic" against marauding U-boats of the Nazi German Navy, but after the victory in 1945, get scrapped over seventeen years later in 1958. Additional production facilities were established in nearby Curtis Bay at the industrialist George Pullman's old 1890s era Pullman-Standard Car Company factory (which built railroad car wheels) along Curtis Avenue several miles to the southeast, where major ship parts were fabricated and pulled to the Fairfield yards on connecting Baltimore and Ohio Railroad line on flat-cars for assembly and welding.
"S.S. John W. Brown""Liberty" type cargo ship launched September 7, after constructed for two-month period at Bethlehem-Fairfield Shipyard at South Baltimore's Fairfield area by Bethlehem Steel Corporation. After a dozen wartime voyages, ship later serves as a maritime high school in New York City from 1946 to 1981. After several years languishing dormant in New York and Virginia, one of the last surviving Liberty ships of its kind is returned in 1988 to its original home of Baltimore and sponsored by sea heritage organization "Project: Liberty Ship" to be restored as a museum floating exhibit in Baltimore harbor, undergoing two years restorations and renovations making it seaworthy again by old retired mariners, seamen and Navy sailors. The "Brown" is moored for next three decades at several piers on South Clinton Street in Canton waterfront and occasionally visiting the Inner Harbor for special historical events and tours and cruises the Chesapeake Bay, even attempting a return to Normandy, France for anniversary of D-Day invasion.
City purchases mansion and estate of Cylburn on hill overlooking west bank of Jones Falls and fronting on Greenspring Avenue in north-central city for $42,300 ($235 per acre) although valued at $92,000. Former estate of 19th century businessman, chromite mining and philanthropist Jesse Tyson (son of Isaac Tyson, 1792–1861), with their operations at the harborside of "The Basin" of the Baltimore Chrome Works. The Younger Tyson who began building the stone Victorian style mansion in 1863 from his own quarries of gneiss at Bare Hills, Maryland until his death in 1902. Family descendants occupied it for next four decades. City temporarily uses estate by Department of Public Welfare as Home for Neglected Children until 1954, then establishing Cylburn Wildflower Preserve and Garden Center under Department of Recreation and Parks – Bureau of Parks. Becomes Cylburn Arboretum in 1982 and under guidance of private/public partnership of Cylburn Arboretum Association who improve estate and landscape grounds.
1947 – WMAR-TV (television) begins broadcasting on Channel 2 on October 27 as first station in the state. Its first programs are a pair of horse races from the famous local Pimlico Race Course. Owned by local daily newspapers publisher A.S. Abell Company, of "Baltimore Sunpapers" and affiliates with nation-wide network of Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS). First offices and studios are located in "The Sun" Building at the southwest corner of West Baltimore and South Charles Streets in Downtown Baltimore, before they are moved in 1950.
Baltimore County Public Library system established, continuing effort begun by Library Association established nine years before. County Commissioners appoint 6 citizens to an Advisory Committee which in a few months makes recommendations in February 1948 to follow previous passage of Maryland General Assembly law from 1945 mandating county public libraries in Maryland. Merging previous various 12 community libraries, beginning with Reisterstown, which was founded in the county in 1929 and located in the Franklin High School, others existed with local funds and occasional grants from County Commissioners. Approved by the Board of County Commissioners and requests Gov. William Preston Lane, (1892–1967, served 1947–1951) to appoint a County Board of Library Trustees, which later hires its first Chief Librarian, Richard D. Minnich in January 1949. System joins the previous longtime Enoch Pratt Free Library (in the city since 1882/1886), serving the metropolitan area and grows to the present 19 branches with four bookmobiles, with one of the highest circulation rates in the nation by the 21st century.
WAAMtelevision starts operations on Channel 13 as the city's third major station on November 1, operated by Radio-Television of Baltimore, Inc. , owned by Ben and Herman Cohen, as independent operators. WAAM aligns itself with the smaller and newest of the nation-wide networks ABC (American Broadcasting Company) and also joined with a smaller fourth network Dumont (until 1956). Westinghouse buys the station nine years later and changes the call signs to the current WJZ in 1957, because of its historical heritage in early radio history in New York. Station builds its studios, the first in Baltimore designed for television production and broadcasting, on Malden Avenue, near Druid Hill Park in Woodberry neighborhood on what is later renamed "Television Hill" overlooking the west bank of the Jones Falls stream valley which divides the city. The three major network affiliated stations cooperate in 1959 building a joint television transmission antenna tower, later known as the "candelabra tower" to have their signals reach most of central Maryland and even surrounding states.
1949 – Edgar Allan Poe House on Amity Street property on west side of Downtown Baltimore purchased by the city and opens and operates small historical museum. Later after its organization in 1964, the Poe House comes under the sponsorship of the city's newly created Commission for Historical and Architectural Preservation. Edgar Allan Poe Homes, a public housing project is constructed nearby.
A new multi-use sports stadium in memory of the casualties and losses of military service-members during the recent World War II and renamed "Memorial Stadium" begins a major reconstruction project on 33rd Street Boulevard, northeast of Waverly neighborhood, (and adjacent future Coldstream-Homestead-Montebello neighborhood) over the old football-bowl of Municipal Stadium, constructed from 1922 (also sometimes known as the "Baltimore Stadium" or "Venable Stadium"). Constructed in a few months under the pushing of former Mayor Howard W. Jackson in seven months, controversially in the former Venable Park, the old stadium with a horse-shoe shape now with the open end facing north towards 36th Street the surrounding parking lots and the rowhouse community of Ednor Gardens-Lakeside. The new renovated stadium, constructed with a large prominent front brick façade with huge aluminum "Art Deco" styled lettering with words of dedication to the soldiers of the recent World War II inscribed facing 33rd Street (unlike old Municipal's open end with a Greco-Roman columnade on the contrasting southside facing 33rd Street). Later construction of an upper deck with small mezzanine level in-between begins in a rush-job project during later winter of 1953 and spring 1954, when the transfer and movement of the former St. Louis Browns team of major league baseball to the Chesapeake Bay region is later finally approved by the owners in the American League during a meeting in the Commodore Hotel in New York City, during September 1953, with business leader Clarence Miles who led a local investment group including with Zanvyl Krieger of Gunther Brewing Company, Jerold Hoffberger of National Brewing Company, Joseph Iglehart (investment financier), James Keelty (real estate broker), and the City Soliciter Thomas Biddison, and the firm support of Mayor Thomas J. D'Alesandro, Jr., (1903–1987), [served 1947–1959], after an earlier disappointing "no" vote during the American League spring meeting in Miami because of owners distaste for controversial maverick Browns' recent owner Bill Veeck still holding an ownership stake in Baltimore. When the Baltimore ownership group agrees later to buy out Veeck's majority stock, the A.L. owners approve the purchase and move of the half-century old St. Louis A.L. franchise. The relocated team is immediately renamed the Baltimore Orioles in honor of the local favorite ball team name in the City since the 1880s. It is only the second Major League Baseball franchise to be moved in a half-century and the first to change its mascot name in a new city.
Baltimore Civic Opera Company which had earlier put on productions during the 1930s despite the financial decline and massive widespread unemployment during the "Great Depression" at the luxurious Maryland and Auditorium Theatres (now closed Mayfair Theatre for movies, both bracketing corner alongside the Congress Hotel [formerly Kernan's] at West Franklin and North Howard Streets) along with the nearby 1894 Lyric Opera House facing Mount Royal Avenue, was reorganized after temporarily closing following earlier 1947 death of director Eugene Martinet, (Peabody Institute grad and founder of Martinet Opera School in 1927) who had carried on the Company from its earlier 1917 establishment during World War I-era. That company continued into the 1920s under conductor David S. Melamet, (known for leading German "Sangerfest" cultural musical festivals), founded the Baltimore Opera Society. This new version of the Baltimore Civic Opera Company (B.C.O.C.) continuing with some similar leaders and members, reorganized in 1931 with first production of The Mikado performed in October 1932 under Eugene Martinet. Third version of B.C.O.C. re-organized November 1948, (with some small productions apparently put on before 1950), incorporated 1950, with support of Mary M. Martinet, former conductor's widow continuing as director, son Leigh Martinet as music director, and Grant U. Stiner – business manager, with now the lasting powerful influence of former famous 1930s Metropolitan Opera Company of New York's opera singer Rosa Ponselle. She had retired to an exclusive wealthy estate "Villa Pace" in the Greenspring Valley of northern rural Baltimore County, later serving as artistic director of the Company for several decades. A city of musicales, dramatic live plays and productions since the first theatre constructed here in the 1780s with later 19th Century productions in around the downtown business district of various opera and musicale plays organized under famous local civic leader and famous theater owner John T. Ford, Sr. (of infamous Ford's Theater in Washington, D.C. where 16th President Abraham Lincoln was shot in April 1865), and was later owner/manager/producer of several playhouses in Baltimore, including the landmark 1871 Ford's Grand Opera House long-running on West Fayette Street – between Howard and Eutaw Streets, endured to 1964. Also in the late 1800s and early 1900s, was owner of several local theaters, builder and impresserio, James L. Kernan, builder of the apex of hospitality and hostelery with an art gallery and live theater entertainment by construction of his landmark Kernan's Hotel, in 1903 (later renamed Congress Hotel after Kernan's death in 1912), along with adjacent/connected Maryland Theatre and around the corner, the elaborate façaded Auditorium Theatre (now closed/decrepit Mayfair Theatre for motion pictures facing Howard Street) on northwest corner of North Howard and West Franklin Streets, his "triple million dollar enterprises". Martinet and Ponselle along with other well-connected backers reorganized a third Baltimore Civic Opera ("Civic" name dropped from title in 1970) begins 1950 season with Giuseppi Verdi's Aida production at the auditorium at the old Maryland Casualty Company's "Rotunda" office building on West 40th Street and Keswick Road, (between Roland Park and Hampden neighborhoods in the northern residential section of town), the next year moves briefly to the largest city public high school auditorium at the old Baltimore Polytechnic Institute on East North Avenue and North Calvert Streets, then returns 1952 to largest seating capacity at the old Lyric. Many productions of expense and large casts of over a hundred members in the previous half-century at the landmark Lyric Opera House (built 1894) on Mount Royal Avenue. Here the Opera Company observed its 50th Silver Anniversary in 2000, but unfortunately, was later hit by unusually devastating financial troubles during the "Great Recession" of 2008 and the B.O.C. is closed in bankruptcy, joining earlier the Maryland Ballet or Baltimore Ballet as part of the city's cultural history.
New larger international airport laid out and constructed by the City of Baltimore in northern Anne Arundel County at site of small village of "Friendship", (southwest of Glen Burnie, south of Linthicum) giving the air terminal its new name: "Friendship International Airport", (later renamed in the early 1970s as "Baltimore-Washington International Airport" (BWI) when taken over by the larger resources of the State of Maryland's new Department of Transportation). Dedicated June 24, by city and state officials joined by 33rd President Harry S. Truman, who flies in on one of the first presidential transport planes "Independence" with the Governor of Maryland, William Preston Lane, Jr. and Baltimore MayorThomas D'Alesandro, Jr., both on their first flights. The new big airport replaces old previous Logan Field from the 1920s, and nearby Harbor Field in the early 1940s and adjacent larger Baltimore Municipal Airport in the late 1940s, along north shore of Patapsco River, near old Colgate Creek (paved over and partially filled-in), now present site of two shipping terminal facilities: Dundalk Marine Terminal and the later adjacent Sea Girt Marine Terminal for the Port of Baltimore. New modern Friendship Airport has large tan brick terminal building with iconic popular observation platform on the roof of one of the wings/concourses used by many curious Maryland citizens "watching the planes" becomes a popular destination for Sunday afternoon car drives. Ties city into international links of world air travel and commerce for next half-century and sees tremendous growth in only two decades by the 1970s with compete re-building and expansion of facilities, joining regional airports of Washington National Airport along the Potomac River shore and Dulles International Airport in western D.C. suburbs of Loudoun County, Virginia for use of the national capital.
New headquarters banking building constructed for Baltimore Federal Savings and Loan Association, largest S. & L. in the region in a distinctive Georgian architecture-styled building at southwest corner of East Fayette Street and St. Paul Street, a block north of junction with Light Street. Nicknamed "Colonial Corner" of red brick and white trim with cupola, the 18th century appearing structure stands out amidst early 20th Century (post-1904 Great Baltimore Fire) downtown office buildings, banks and commercial structures.
First Negro (now Black/African American) male students integrate the Baltimore City Public Schools system, entering the Baltimore Polytechnic Institute in the fall of 1952, after long consideration by moderate and progressive members of the city's Board of School Commissioners. Polytechnic is a "magnet", specialized mathematics, science, engineering and technology public high school, and the case is made not to try and duplicate a similar institution just for Negro students. Predates by two years later, the U.S. Supreme Court landmark decision in "Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas" and other cases, by May 1954. City School Board accepts decision in Baltimore with minor limited controversy as city schools integrate the following September 1954.
Final and full Desegregation of the Baltimore City Public School System, put into practice with Fall opening of public schools by moderate and progressive members of the city's Board of School Commissioners in September, after previous May 1954's U.S. Supreme Court unanimous decision. Process goes peacefully through most of the city with exception of demonstrations and crowds of resisters outside Southern High School in Federal Hill/Old South Baltimore, and old Patterson Park High School (on Ellwood Street) in southeastern part of town.
1955 – Growing national civil rights protests across The South and the nation comes to Baltimore with demonstration led by the local affiliate Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), at largest of local chain-store merchant Read's Drug Store (known by the 1970s as "Rite-Aid"), with their iconic lunch counters at downtown store's location at southeastern corner of North Howard and West Lexington Streets, amidst many large department stores and movie theatre district.
1956 – Admittance of the Frederick Douglass High School (formerly "Colored" High School and Training School before 1925, when founded in 1883), the Paul Laurence Dunbar Community High School (established 1931), and the Carver Vocational-Technical High School (founded 1925), from the formerly racially segregated Baltimore City Public Schools system (since the 1860s to the May 1954 "Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas" decision by the United States Supreme Court) into the Maryland Scholastic Association (M.S.A.) which had been founded in 1919 (by Dr. Phillip H. Edwards – athletic coach and later noted Principal of the Baltimore City College in the 1930s and 1940s along with some other coaches and principals) for central Maryland area private/parochial/independent secondary schools and the high schools of Baltimore City (only a few high schools then existed in other suburban counties such as Baltimore, Harford, Carroll, Howard and Frederick Counties and the distance/expense with streetcars, inter-urban electric commuter trains or highway buses then used for weekly competitions was prohibitive). The MSA was one of the first public-private high school athletic leagues in the country and its championships long constituted a "state championship". The later Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association (MPSSA) was not established until the latter 1950s as a burst of high schools opened in surrounding Baltimore County with beginning athletic programs for boys only, and spread to a statewide system which competed with the older senior league until the early 1990s, when a new Baltimore City superintendent of schools, Walter Amprey, who graduated and began his teaching career in the city, spent most of his supervising/administrative career in the suburban Baltimore County system, forced the withdrawal of the city schools (especially including athletic, all-male powerhouses City, Poly, and the co-ed neighborhood schools: Douglass, Dunbar (previously "colored schools"), and co-ed neighborhood schools – Forest Park, Patterson, Southern, Edmondson, Northern, Northwestern, Southwestern, Lake Clifton, Walbrook, plus co-ed vocational-technical institutions at Merganthaler and Carver and all-girls secondary schools Western High School and Eastern High School) became part of the now larger "state league" with its wider membership and reach now into all 23 counties of Maryland with play-offs scheduled annually at the statewide University of Maryland at College Park or University of Maryland Baltimore County larger athletic facilities. The M.S.A. re-organized itself as split into two private school leagues with one for boys and another for girls sports. Although losing its exemplary private-public athletic partnership and competition, (rare in secondary schools competition in the United States), Baltimore is also one of the first school systems in the nation to peacefully integrate its high school athletic programs and led to a great advance in racial harmony in the City in the next two decades unlike some Southern and border states which endured hostility and protests into the 1980s.
Extinguishing on August 14 of last regular gas streetlight in the city which was the first in America to have gas lighting outside in 1817. Modernization process began earlier in decade with replacement with mercury vapor lights. Old lamps sent to Cape May, New Jersey and Disneyland in California. One historic reproduction gas light relit in 1970s and remains at northwest corner of East Baltimore and Holliday Streets (one block south of Baltimore City Hall) where the first one was installed and lit in 1817 in remembrance of scientific technology pioneered by Rembrandt Peale.
In January, employees of the Social Security Administration, first established in 1935 under the "Social Security Act" of programs of the "New Deal" administration of 32nd President Franklin D. Roosevelt, begin moving from their three-decades-old headquarters at the Candler Building on Market Place and East Pratt Street, across from the waterfront "Basin" (later the famed "Inner Harbor") of the Baltimore Harbor. New suburban campus of several modern office buildings is constructed in the Woodlawn area (formerly known as Powhatan) of western Baltimore County, just off the route of the under-construction "Baltimore Beltway" (Interstate 695). Central access route through the area is designated Security Boulevard. Social Security becomes one of the major employers of the county and metro region. Old Candler Building had been the regional headquarters of the Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Atlanta, Georgia, of which Asa Griggs Candler, (1851–1929), whom the building was named for, was the prime mover, founder and industrialist. Candler Building still exists and renovated by the 2010s.
In November, the shortstop for the Baltimore OriolesMajor League Baseball home team Ron Hansen, age 22 is elected by a voting landslide as "Rookie of the Year" in the American League with batting 22 home runs and 82 RBIs. He is the first modern Oriole player to win the award and plays in Baltimore 1958–1962 and later for the Chicago White Sox (twice), Washington Senators, New York Yankees and retires in 1972 after finishing with Kansas City Royals. This past 1960 Orioles season is the first year that the team has finally been competitive chasing the rival New York Yankees and finally finished out of the cellar in the seven seasons that the new "Birds" have been playing since the franchise was transferred from the St. Louis Browns in 1953 and renamed the Orioles. The 1960 Major League Baseball season finds the Birds near the top of the A.L. standings in second place with 89 wins and 65 losses, a percentage of .578 and 8 games behind the champion Yankees. The coming decades of the 1960s – 1970s and early 80s see the Baltimore team playing at Memorial Stadium on 33rd Street as one of the most powerful and successful franchises of those times in the sport.
Last running of electric streetcars in Baltimore on August 14 when No. 8 car to Catonsville turns into Irvington car barn of Baltimore Transit Company in southwestern city at 6:30 am. Groups of streetcar and railroad enthusiasts/historians ride special car taking photos, recording sounds and interviewing conductors with surrounding news media. By early 1990s urban rail transit returns in modernized fashion known as "light rail", with a metro area central line from Glen Burnie to Hunt Valley, using larger more complex cars, on streets and separate tracks.
1965 – First major suspension and labor strike in city's history of all three daily newspapers publications in city against the "The Sun" (morning) and "The Evening Sun" published by A.S. Abell and Company since 1837 / 1915, and the long-time competing Hearst owned The News American" (afternoon/evening) – since 1773/1798, during the Spring – March to June, with striking reporters and editors later publishing their own "strike papers" – "Baltimore Banner" and "Baltimore Herald" temporarily until the walk-out ends.
National Aquarium in Baltimore opens on former Pier 3 on East Pratt Street facing Inner Harbor. Museum has 5,600 animals to exhibit which grows to about 17,000 by25 years later. Famous incident with Mayor William Donald Schaefer swimming in outside dolphin pool if the museum was not opened by a certain original "construction complete" deadline. Media and photographers cluster about for great iconic scene as Schaefer comes out with rubber duckie wearing old 19th Century style bathing suit and straw-boater hat.
1995 – Fells Point Creative Alliance, a coalition of artists and supporters, established by volunteers in Fells Point as a hybrid gallery, performance spaces, artists studios and guild. First located temporarily in a neighborhood rowhouse, later moves to an old Loyal Order of Moose lodge building/hall in Highlandtown, then to old trolley car barn on Thames Street facing waterfront and old Recreation/City/Broadway Pier. Temporarily at old "Pep Boys" auto parts store in Highlandtown again, finally begins $4.5 million campaign for converting old Patterson Theatre on Eastern Avenue, at East Avenue, which will cost $3.6 million. Helped by grants obtained from government art and humanities programs through state senator Perry Sfikas and U.S. Senator Barbara Mikulski, in addition to continued private fund-raising with matching grants. Old Patterson movie theatre built 1910 as silent movies gallery and dance hall, razed 1929 and replaced by current building, closes for regular second-run flics in 1995. New Creative Alliance space opens May 16, 2003, with 2 art galleries, 2 performing spaces, 200 seat theatre, classrooms, media lab, living/work studios, offices, sidewalk café, becomes revitalizer to Highlandtown commercial/business district.
National Katyń Memorial is cast and constructed of bronze on stone base in newly re-developed Harbor East area, (southeast of Inner Harbor) at the foot of President Street boulevard in International Circle to commemorate Polish Army officers murdered en masse by Soviet Russians under dictator Joseph Stalin after invading eastern part of country in mid-September 1939 following original invasion several days earlier by Nazi Germany under Adolf Hitler from the west, beginning World War II. Bodies buried in the forest in mass graves found 1941 by the Germans, (after their further invasion of the Soviet Union following later), who had been blamed for the massacre caused by attempts of Soviets' Red Army to decimate effective anti-Communist leaders and intelligentsia for future Soviet post-war occupation. Statue artwork and memorial plaques sponsored by local Baltimore community of Polish-Americans as exhibiting some of their history, heritage and culture.
The Wire fictional cable television program series set in Baltimore about city police fighting local drug dealers with monitored, recorded phone conversations begins national broadcast on HBO (Home Box Office).
Sheila Dixon trial for corruption and misusing retail gift cards donated for charitable cases for her personal use. She is convicted and is later removed from office as mayor.
"Great Recession of 2009" causes major unemployment in Baltimore and caused economic problems for various arts and cultural organizations and eventual bankruptcy for the local long-time Baltimore Opera Company.
"Occupy Baltimore" campaign begins, setting up downtown demonstrations and squatter camps at various locations protesting for employment, against large financial institutions and lack of economic equality in America.
J. Thomas Scharf (1874), The chronicles of Baltimore: being a complete history of "Baltimore town" and Baltimore city from the earliest period to the present time, Baltimore: Turnbull Bros., OCLC11971847, OL13489724M
"Baltimore", Appleton's Illustrated Hand-Book of American Cities, New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1876
1730–1880: Celebration of the 150th Anniversary of the Settlement of Baltimore Town, Printed by order of the Mayor and City Council, 1881, OL19368892M
J. Thomas Scharf (1881), History of Baltimore city and county, from the earliest period to the present day: including biographical sketches of their representative men, Philadelphia: L.H. Everts, OL24157798M
Robert I. Vexler (1975), Howard B. Furer (ed.), Baltimore: a Chronological & Documentary History, 1632–1970, American Cities Chronology Series, Dobbs Ferry, N.Y.: Oceana Publications, ISBN0-379-00602-2