Category: Support

Happy Holidays…and Oh Yes, January Tours of M&T Bank Stadium and Zeke’s Coffee Roastery

Even though we’re in the midst of the 2019 holiday season, we can’t help but share two new tours we just lined up for the new year and hope you will put them on your 2020 calendar.

On Tuesday, January 7, we are excited to offer a tour of M&T Bank Stadium, “From Pianos to Pigskins: Ravens Stadium Then and Now.” We’ll explore the stadium from the suite-level to the locker-rooms and learn about the enormous 1869 Knabe Piano Factory that once sat at the same location. Join us for this touchdown tour to talk about both football players and piano players.

On Thursday, January 23, we’re touring Zeke’s Coffee Roastery to learn about this Baltimore business’s unique roasting process, as well as a little of the history of Baltimore’s coffee trade. In 2005 when Thomas Rhodes founded Zeke’s, he joined a long line of coffee connoisseurs going back over 200 years in Baltimore. We hope to see you on the 23rd: it will be espresso-ily energizing!

From all of us at Baltimore Heritage, we wish you a happy holiday season and thank you again for all your interest and support.

— Johns Hopkins, Executive Director

P.S., If you have not renewed your membership, we humbly suggest now would be a great time to do so. And for last minute shoppers, Baltimore Heritage memberships make great holiday presents!

Suffrage in the Spotlight: Heritage Talks and Tours this Holiday Season

Before we turn all of our attention to holiday planning, check out our upcoming heritage talks and tours to get to know even more about Baltimore’s history this winter season.

On December 15, join author Elaine Weiss for a lecture on her book, The Woman’s Hour: The Great Fight to Win the Vote, which chronicles the struggle for American female suffrage. Ms. Weiss’s book is so compelling that Steven Spielberg and Hillary Clinton are teaming up to turn it into a movie! This Thanksgiving, we are especially grateful for the women and men who fought for voting rights over a century ago.

On December 14, catch our last Lexington Market tour of the year. See behind-the-scenes at what Ralph Waldo Emerson dubbed “the gastronomic capital of the world” and the catacombs under the marketplace. Be sure to stock up on the candies and baked goods at the market for your holiday sweet tooth!

Finally, with Thanksgiving around the corner, we at Baltimore Heritage have a lot to be thankful for, starting with the kind volunteers who lead our tours, research and write about historic places for Explore Baltimore Heritage, join us in fighting for threatened historic landmarks, and so much more. You make our work possible. Thank you all!

— Johns Hopkins, Executive Director

PS: It’s the time of year when we both give thanks and look forward to the year ahead. It is also the time of year when we ask you to join or renew your membership support for Baltimore Heritage. Your gift makes our work possible.

Renew your support for Baltimore Heritage in 2018

It’s the time of year when we both give thanks and look forward to the year ahead. It is also the time of year when we ask you to renew your membership support for Baltimore Heritage.

We at Baltimore Heritage have a lot to be thankful for—starting with the kind volunteers who lead our tours, research and write about historic places for Explore Baltimore Heritage, join us in fighting for threatened historic landmarks, and so much more. You make our work possible.

Archaeological investigation at the Sellers Mansion, July 28, 2018.

We also are thankful that the future is looking brighter for the Sellers Mansion in West Baltimore’s Lafayette Square neighborhood. This past summer, we helped organize a group of volunteer archaeologists and excavated the yard of this 1868 house. Our team identified the remains of a historic nursery building and found artifacts from the Sellers’ family occupation. Most importantly, the dig fulfilled one of the city’s requirements before stabilization work on the building could begin. After more than twenty years advocating for the preservation of this grand structure, we are excited to see the project being moving forward. The rehabilitation cannot come soon enough!

Sam Smith Monument
Sam Smith Monument, 2013. Courtesy CHAP.

We’d also like to say thanks to our new partners: the Adopt-a-Monument Partnership Fund. This program, now twenty-five years old, matches donors with public sculptures in Baltimore to raise funds for their maintenance and preservation. With thousands of dollars raised every year, the program has helped dozens of sculptures including the Peace Monument in Mount Vernon, On the Trail in Clifton Park, and the Sam Smith statue in Federal Hill. We look forward to both being the fiscal sponsor for this great project and helping it expand to help even more public art in Baltimore.

Behind the Scenes tour at Fashions Unlimited, June 26, 2018.

As we look forward to year ahead, we know that it will be full of new tours in our Heritage Tour Series (two hundred different sites and counting!), as well as work to help threatened historic squares and neighborhoods as they revitalize. Thank you again for your past support and for renewing your Baltimore Heritage membership. We can’t do it without you!

What we’ve achieved together in 2017

I just took a look back at the programs and events, advocacy, and technical assistance our Baltimore Heritage community accomplished this past year and I am amazed.

I’m amazed by the 2,415 people and organizations that donated, volunteered, and supported our work preserving historic places and promoting historic neighborhoods. With just two-and-a-half staff, we are not the biggest non-profit in Baltimore but we feel fortunate to have so many friends and neighbors who love this city just as much as we do!

Here’s what’s behind that truly extraordinary number:

  • Three generous donors funded our preservation micro-grants
  • Three volunteers and three great partners helped launch our new Maintain Civic Spaces project
  • Seventy-seven people showed up for our Vacant Buildings 101 workshops
  • Forty-six volunteers led eighty heritage tours of historic places
  • Over fifteen hundred people came on tours generating over $2,000 for local historic sites
  • Over eight hundred people supported our work as members
  • Nineteen corporations and thirteen foundations gave grants or sponsorships

Wow! For all of you who volunteer, come out to our programs and tours, and support our work in Baltimore, please accept a sincere thank you from all of our staff and board of directors at Baltimore Heritage. Here is how your time, talents and financial support make a difference.


Leading tours of thirty unique historic places

In 2017, forty-six people volunteered their time, talent, and knowledge to lead eighty tours of thirty separate historic places around Baltimore. Our annual Baltimore by Foot neighborhood walking tour series took visitors to Stone Hill and Dickeyville. Our Behind the Scenes tours explored historic theaters downtown, the “catacombs” at Lexington Market, and the H.L. Mencken House — just to name a few.

With over fifteen hundred participants, your tour tickets raised nearly $2,000 for preservation of small museums and historic sites across the city. We covered a lot of territory thanks to our tour volunteers:

Melissa Archer, Shelley Arnold, Joanne Baker, Tom Beck, Ralph Brown, Blaine Carvalho, Marianne Colimore, Graham Coreil-Allen, Sally Craig, Kate Creamer, Kate Drabinski, Bill Dunn, Patricia Foster, Rose Gallenberger, Marjorie Goodman, Virginia Green, Francesca Guerin, Patricia Hawthorne, Robert Headley, Duncan Hodge, Guy Hollyday, Matthew Hood, Louis Hughes, Lesley Humphreys, Jamie Hunt, Lisa Kraus, Sarah Krum, Lindsey Loeper, Alvin Manger, Richard Messick, Stephanie Moore, Peter Morrill, Richard Oloizia, Stacy Pack, Shirley Perry, Wayne Schaumburg, Doris Sharkey, Jason Shellenhamer, Terry Shepard, Lisa Simeone, Rick Smith, Willy Sydnor, Debra Thomas, Dave Tirschman, Tom Walker, Gregory Weidman, and Debra Wiener.

Teaching Vacant Buildings 101 to neighborhood advocates

Vacant buildings cause problems for residents all across Baltimore City. But residents can also work to solve these problems! Baltimore Heritage and the Community Law Center teamed up to lead three workshops and publish a new online resource for Baltimore residents, property owners, and community leaders to take action on this issue. Thanks to our colleagues Becky Witt and Kristine Dunkerton at the Community Law Center for working with us.

Giving away micro-grants for preservation projects

A gothic stone church seen from the roof of a building across the street.
Union Baptist Church, 2016 April 6. Baltimore Heritage.

With the generous support of one of our members, Ms. Brigid Goody, and surprise gifts from FreedomCar and Southway Builders, in the second year of our preservation micro-grant program we offered six grants totaling $3,000 to the Preservation Society of Fell’s Point, the Beloved Community Services Corporation at Union Baptist Church, Mount Clare House Museum, Poe Baltimore, H.L. Mencken House, Lillie Carroll Jackson Civil Rights Museum, and Civic Works.

Maintaining historic buildings as civic spaces

This year, we partnered with the Neighborhood Design Center’s Community Design Works program to recruit volunteer architects and conduct conditions assessments of the Village Learning Place and the Hodge House at First & Franklin Church. We’re now interviewing local nonprofit leaders with the Friends of Patterson Park and McKim Center to understand best practices for maintaining community-serving buildings. Thanks to Laura Wheaton at NDC, volunteer architects Darragh Brady, Andrew Chaveas, and Jay Orr, PNC Bank for its support, and everyone who has helped us to launch this exciting new initiative.

Sustaining our work and mission as members

Over eight hundred individuals and families contributed as members, nineteen corporations provided sponsorship support, and thirteen foundations and organizations supported our programs and events. These contributions make up over fifty percent of our operating budget and provide the critical funding for all we do, from advocating for places like the Sellers Mansion to providing technical assistance on historic preservation projects.

Corporate & Business Supporters: Agora, Brennan and Company Architects, Cho Benn Holback, a Quinn Evans Company, Delbert Adams Construction Group, FreedomCar, GLB Concrete Construction, GWWO Architects, McLain Wiesand, Michael J. Walkley, PA, Murdoch Architects, O’Connell & Associates, PNC, Rohrer Studio, SM+P Architects, Southway Builders, Terra Nova Ventures, The Whiting-Turner Contracting Company, Zeskinds Hardware and Millwork, Ziger/Snead Architects

Foundation Supporters: Abell Foundation Matching Grant, Annie Casey Matching Grant, Baltimore Office of Promotion and Arts, Greater Cincinnati Foundation, Kaiser Foundation Matching Grant, Marino Foundation, Maryland Association of History Museums, Mount Washington Garden Club, National Recreation Foundation, Preservation Maryland, University of Maryland, University of Maryland Foundation, Van Buren Family Foundation


I wish you a wonderful holiday season and I look forward to working with you in the new year.

P.S. You can help that number go from 2,415 to 2,416. Please consider renewing your support or becoming a member or signing up to join us for an upcoming tour. Thanks!