The classically styled Old Town National Bank building at 221 N. Gay Street was constructed in 1924 as a bank headquarters. Despite many years of vacancy, the primary first stories retained an array of historic details, including a two story lobby, cornice and parapet wall, grand marble stairway, and even vault spaces. The work included refurbishing and repairing these and a host of other features, and the building now shines as a Holiday Inn Express Hotel. For more information on the project see this great account from the Baltimore Sun. The Adaptive Reuse and Compatible Design Awards went to owner Old Town Properties LLC and architects Kann Partners.
Did you know that Baltimore is home to one of the oldest synagogues in the nation? Built in 1845 at the center of the historic Jewish community of East Baltimore, the Lloyd Street Synagogue was the first synagogue erected in Maryland and today it is the third-oldest standing synagogue in the country. Please join us for a tour of this rare restored landmark with preservation architect John Srygley, AIA, and the staff of the Jewish Museum of Maryland (also celebrating its 50th anniversary this year).
Note: We are holding two identical tours. The first starts with a reception at 5:00 and the tour at 5:30, and the second starts with a reception at 6:00 and the tour at 6:30.
Date: Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Time: 5:00 p.m. reception; 5:30 to 6:30 tour
6:00 p.m. reception; 6:30 to 7:30 tour
Place: Jewish Museum of Maryland, 15 Lloyd Street (Baltimore, MD 21202)
We’ll walk next door to the Lloyd Street Synagogue after meeting at the Museum.
Free parking is available in a lot across from the Museum. It is a brick lot in front of the Museum entrance.
Cost: $15 (includes wine and cheese reception)
Registration: Click Here to Register!
With its Moorish-Revival architecture and deep roots in Baltimore’s Eastern European Jewish community, the B’nai Israel Synagogue is a magnificent historic building with a congregation that has played a central part of the fascinating story of immigration and change in East Baltimore. Please join us for a tour of the synagogue with B’nai Israel historian Fred Shoken and other members of the congregation.
We are also partnering with the neighboring Jewish Museum of Maryland for a tour of the Lloyd Street Synagogue in a two-part exploration of Jewish heritage in Baltimore. Stay tuned for the announcement of the Lloyd Street Synagogue tour shortly.
Dates: Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Time: 5:45 PM: Kosher wine and cheese reception
6:00 to 7:00 PM: tour
Place: 27 Lloyd Street (Baltimore, MD 21202)
Parking is available along nearby streets
Cost: $15 (includes wine and cheese reception)
Registration: Click Here to Register
This week’s Baltimore Building of the Week is not, in fact, a building. Instead, it is three of Baltimore’s notable “Columnar Monuments.” Both the Battle Monument and Mount Vernon’s Washington Monument have also been featured on the Monument City website. Visitors can take a tour of the Shot Tower’s ground floor exhibit, sound and light show, and informational video are available with appointment at 10:30 AM on Saturday or Sunday. The Washington Monument is open for visitors Wednesday to Friday 10 AM to 4 PM and Saturday and Sunday 10 AM to 5 PM up until Memorial Day.
Completed during the 1820s, two of these towering structures established Baltimore’s distinction as “the Monumental City.” Maximilian Godefroy’s Battle Monument, depicted on the City flag, commemorated the Defenders who died beating off the British attack in 1814. It combines Egyptian and Roman themes, including a giant set of fasces. A gigantic Roman Doric column, Robert Mills’ Washington Monument portrays the Father of Our Country, dressed in a toga, performing what its builders considered his most heroic act. (What was it? answer next week!) The contemporary Phoenix Shot Tower was a monument to Baltimore’s growing industrial sector; it manufactured lead shot for the Chesapeake Bay duck-hunting industry.
Staying in the historic Jonestown neighborhood for another week in our Baltimore Building of the Week series, Dr. John Breihan shares an exceptional example of the characteristic federal row house: 9 North Front Street. Read on then click here for an additional photo of 9 North Front Street from the interesting Monument City project.
The federal style of architecture was popular during Baltimore’s most vigorous period of growth, from the 1790s to the 1850s, when Baltimore vaulted into second place among American cities. The new residents were mostly housed in 1, 2, and 3½-story dormered brick row houses, less ornate than their Georgian predecessors. They are to be found all around the bustling harbor, from Fells Point through Little Italy and Jonestown to Federal Hill. A good example is 9 N. Front Street, the home of Baltimore’s second mayor, Thorowgood Smith, built in 1790. It was saved from deterioration by the Women’s Civic League during the 1970s. Other federal row houses preserved for public use include the Mother Seton House, the Star-Spangled Banner Flag House, and the Edgar Allen Poe House.