In June, Baltimore Heritage recognized 14 great historic preservation projects and people who have contributed significantly to the preservation of Baltimore’s historic places. Read on over the course of the summer as we cover these buildings and people, beginning with the Baron and Company Cigar Building.
The Baron and Company Cigar building at 1007 East Pratt Street lies within the South Central Historic District, along Central Avenue just east of Little Italy. Most of the structures in this area are vernacular rowhouses but a few, including the Cigar Building, are much larger industrial buildings that help give the area its distinctive flair. Baron and Company Cigars first occupied the space beginning about 1880, and by 1910 a company called the American Coat Pad Company had moved in. American Coat Pad was an apparel company that distributed throughout the United States, Mexico and Canada devoting itself exclusively to the little poofy parts of men’s and women’s coat fronts. In 2010, Mr. James Seay and his company, Premier Rides, Inc., along with Fishell Architecture, renovated the building into office space for a number of companies and light manufacturers.
The current restoration included saving and restoring existing doors, replicating metal windows where the originals had deteriorated too badly to be salvaged, and keeping the original metal shutters. The interior spaces were largely compatible for light manufacturing, and were kept intact, with much patching of plaster of course. Many of the original interior doors were salvageable and were kept, as was much of the original wooden flooring. Overall, the work seems squarely in keeping with the purposes for which this late 19th century industrial building was built. Starting out life as a cigar company, then as a clothing manufacturer, it has a new lease on life as offices and light manufacturing.
Read on for more shots of the building from before and after this award winning rehabilitation!
This past year ushered in great historic preservation work around Baltimore, and we at Baltimore Heritage were pleased to recognize some of the best projects and the people behind them in our 2011 Preservation Awards Celebration last Friday in Union Square. With a series of thundershowers sweeping through West Baltimore exactly at the moment the outdoor program was set to begin, the event was a wet and wild time. Some call Baltimore the “City of Firsts.” We lay claim to the house of the first American saint (Elizabeth Ann Seton), the first umbrella factory (William Beehler, 1828), the first African American Supreme Court Justice (Thurgood Marshall), and the tallest building up to the Civil War (the Shot Tower). And now I think we can lay claim to having the wettest historic preservation awards event ever.
With the untiring work of a horde of volunteers and board members, and gracious hosting by the Union Square Association and many residents around the Square, 300 people from around Baltimore celebrated the best historic preservation projects of the year (listed below), and got more than a fair share of summer showers. Historic Union Square shone brightly, and despite the rain, or maybe even because of it, many of us reaffirmed our appreciation for Baltimore’s great historic places and those who work to preserve and revitalize them. This is the first in a series of posts that will highlight the people and projects that won preservation awards this year from Baltimore Heritage. I hope you enjoy learning a little more about some wonderful buildings and the great efforts that have gone into saving them.
I would be remiss if I didn’t thank our hosts for the event, the Union Square Association, the gracious owners who opened their houses for house tours, our corporate sponsors, all of our volunteers, and the intrepid event committee: Jim Suttner (chair), Elise Butler, Lisa Doyle, Jean Hankey, Lesley Humphreys, Mary Beth Lennon, and Stephen Sattler. Read on for a full list of our 2011 Preservation Award Winners and check out our many photos from the evening celebration on Flickr.
This year, we’re trying something new to help celebrate the Baltimore’s best historic preservation projects and the people behind them–we’re holding our 2011 awards gala outdoors in historic Union Square park. We hope you can join us for a festive evening beginning with a set of private open houses around the Square, including the Hollins Street rowhouse where H.L. Mencken lived and wrote and the grand Turnbull Mansion whose restoration was a true labor of love.
Open houses will be followed by dinner, drinks and live music under the stars in one of Baltimore’s most treasured historic spaces. If you haven’t been to Union Square in a while (or even if you live right next door), please join us in honoring the great work that is going on in West Baltimore and the entire city.
Union Square, West Baltimore | Friday, June 10, 2011
- 4:30 PM | Open Houses
- 5:30 PM | Reception
- 6:45 PM | Awards and Dinner
$60 for Baltimore Heritage Members ($70 for non-members. Join!)
Purchase tickets online today!
Baltimore Heritage is seeking your nominations for Baltimore’s best historic preservation projects and leaders, from exceptional restorations to new neighborhood tour programs. We’re excited to continue last year’s new award categories offering special recognition to smaller DIY projects with our Sweat Equity Award and celebrating small organizations and communities that are working to preserve and promote historic neighborhood places through the Historic Baltimore Neighborhoods award. For inspiration, check out our series on 2010 Preservation Award Winners, including great adaptive reuse and restoration projects like the Hotel Brexton, the Elisha Tyson House, Miller’s Court, and, of course, the American Brewery.
We have designed our online nomination form to be fast and easy with two main parts:
- A short narrative (250-1000 words) about the project or achievement and a list of participants
- Photographs of the project or related to the achievement submitted by e-mail or on CD.
Continue on to learn more about our six categories ranging from large commercial redevelopments to DIY rowhouse rehabs then submit your nomination online today. Self nominations are encouraged. The deadline for accepting nominations is April 2, 2011. Read more