Are you among the many Baltimoreans who have passed Homewood House on the Johns Hopkins University campus and wondered what the construction is about? Wonder no more! Please plan to join us in learning what it takes to renovate a 211-year-old portico and then come inside for a close-up look at this historic and architectural gem. As for the portico, new discoveries during restoration underscore Homewood House’s superlative construction, and may explain why the house ended up costing four times the original $10,000 that Charles Carroll budgeted for it in 1801.
Wednesday, June 13, 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm
3400 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218 (on JHU campus)
$15 members | $25 non-members (wine & cheese will be served)
RSVP for the tour today!
Homewood House is the former home of Charles Carroll, Jr., son of Maryland’s only Catholic signer of the Declaration of Independence, Charles Carroll of Carrollton. In 1800, the elder Carroll offered his son and new bride, Harriett Chew, the funds to build a country retreat. The original plan was to renovate an existing farmhouse, but Carroll the younger had higher social aspirations and wanted a house to reflect it. With more than a little contention between father and son, Homewood House was completed in 1801 at a cost of $40,000, four times what Father Carroll had wished to spend. The exceedingly high cost, however, went into both great architecture and great craftsmanship.
The current restoration of the south portico has reinforced this, with new discoveries of vaulted arches under the stairs and other construction practices that have helped the building stand straight and true for over two centuries. For the tour, Ms. Catherine Rogers Arthur, Director and Curator of Homewood House Museum, and Mr. Travers Nelson, project manager, will take us through the steps involved in the restoration of the south portico and then into the house itself. Today’s current craftsmen undertaking the restoration work include G. Krug & Son, Baltimore ironmongery in business since 1810, for the original wrought iron railing, and SMG Architects as the lead architect. As an extra bonus, the tour will include Homewood House’s most recent acquisition: Charles Carroll of Carrollton’s architectural drawing desk. With several Atlantic crossings to Ireland and back, this Irish-made desk has quite the story to tell. Please join us for a tour of this preservation project in action and one of Baltimore’s historic treasures.