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Baltimore, Maryland 21202

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"Maryland Zoo at Baltimore"
Photo courtesy of Visit Baltimore


The city is named after Cecil Calvert, second Lord Baltimore, (1605-1675), a member of the Irish House of Lords and the founding proprietor of the Colony and Province of Maryland. Baltimore is an anglicization of the Irish name Baile an Ti Mohir, meaning "town of the big house", which was the name of the estate in County Longford on which the Calvert family lived, in Ireland.

The 1600s  In 1608, Captain John Smith traveled 170 miles from Jamestown to the upper Chesapeake Bay, leading the first European expedition to the Patapsco River, named after the native Algonquians who fished shellfish and hunted. The name "Patapsco" is derived from pota-psk-ut, which translates to "backwater" or "tide covered with froth" in Algonquian dialect. Soon after John Smith's voyage, English colonists began to settle in Maryland. The area constituting the modern City of Baltimore and its metropolitan area was first settled by David Jones in 1661, his claim covering in the area known today as Harbor East on the east bank of the Jones Falls river, which flows south into Baltimore's Inner Harbor.

Prior to the establishment of Baltimore as a city, the Piscataway tribe of Algonquians inhabited the Baltimore area. The English were initially frightened by the Piscataway because of their body paint and war regalia, even though they were a peaceful tribe. The chief of the Piscataway tribe was quick to grant the English permission to settle within Piscataway territory and cordial relations were established between the English and the Piscataway. The Baltimore area has been inhabited by Native Americans since at least the 10th millennium BC, when Paleo-Indians first settled in the region. One Paleo-Indian site and several Archaic period and Woodland period archaeological sites have been identified in Baltimore, including four from the Late Woodland period. During the Late Woodland period, the archaeological culture that is called the "Potomac Creek complex" resided in the area from Baltimore to the Rappahannock River in Virginia


Baltimore Town in 1752 at the Basin
Reconstruction by Edward Johnson Coale in 1817
of the 1752 etching by John Moale of Baltimore.
Photo in public domain, courtesty of Wikipedia

The 1700s & 1800s  The colonial General Assembly of Maryland created the Port of Baltimore at old Whetstone Point (now Locust Point) in 1706 for the tobacco trade. The Town of Baltimore was founded and laid out shortly thereafter on July 30, 1729, and is named after Lord Baltimore (Cecilius Calvert), who was the first Proprietary Governor of the Province of Maryland. Cecilius Calvert was the oldest son of Sir George Calvert, (1579-1632), who became the First Lord Baltimore of County Longford, Ireland in 1625. Previously he had been a loyal agent of King Charles I of England, (1600-1649), as his Secretary of State until declaring himself a follower of Roman Catholicism, however, the King still granted to his heir Cecil, the 1632 Grant for the Maryland colony, which followed up on his earlier settlement in Newfoundland, known as "Acadia" or "Avalon", (future Canada), which he found too difficult for settlement and cold.

Baltimore grew swiftly in the 18th Century as a granary for sugar-producing colonies in the Caribbean. The profit from sugar encouraged the cultivation of cane and the importation of food.

Baltimore played a key part in events leading to and including the American Revolution. City leaders such as Jonathan Plowman Jr. moved the city to join the resistance to British taxes, and merchants signed agreements to not trade with Britain. The Second Continental Congress met in the Henry Fite House from December 1776 to February 1777, effectively making the city the capital of the United States during this period. After the Revolutionary war, the Town of Baltimore, nearby Jonestown, and an area known as Fells Point were incorporated as the City of Baltimore in 1796-1797. The city remained a part of surrounding Baltimore County, where it had also served as the "county seat" since 1768, until 1851 when it was made an independent city, with the same status in state government as the other 23 counties of Maryland.


"A VIEW of the BOMBARDMENT of Fort McHenry, near Baltimore, by the British fleet taken from the Observatory under the Command
of Admirals Cochrane & Cockburn on the morning of the 13th of Sept 1814 which lasted 24 hours & thrown from 1500 to 1800
shells in the Night attempted to land by forcing a passage up the ferry branch but were repulsed with great loss."

Image in the public domain. Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

The city was the site of the Battle of Baltimore during the War of 1812. After burning Washington, D.C., the British attacked Baltimore outside the eastern outskirts of town on the "Patapsco Neck" on September 12, at the Battle of North Point, then on the night of September 13-14, 1814. United States forces from Fort McHenry successfully defended the city's harbor from the British. Francis Scott Key, (1779-1843), a Maryland lawyer from Georgetown and Frederick, was aboard a British ship where he had been negotiating for the release of an American prisoner, Dr. William Beanes.

Key witnessed the bombardment from this ship and after seeing the huge American flag on the morning of September 14, 1814, he wrote "The Star-Spangled Banner", a poem recounting the attack. Key's poem was set to a 1780 tune by British composer John Stafford Smith, and "The Star-Spangled Banner" became the official national anthem of the United States in 1931.

BattleofBaltimore.jpgFollowing the Battle of Baltimore, the city's population grew rapidly. The construction of the federally funded National Road (which later became part of U.S. Route 40) and the private Baltimore and Ohio Railroad (B.&O.) made Baltimore a major shipping and manufacturing center by linking the city with major markets in the Midwest. A distinctive local culture started to take shape, and a unique skyline peppered with churches and monuments developed. Baltimore acquired its moniker "The Monumental City" after an 1827 visit to Baltimore by President John Quincy Adams. At an evening function Adams gave the following toast: "Baltimore: the Monumental City - May the days of her safety be as prosperous and happy, as the days of her dangers have been trying and triumphant." Baltimore suffered one of the worst riots of the antebellum South in 1835, when bad investments led to the Baltimore bank riot.

Maryland remained part of the Union during the American Civil War despite being a slave state, in addition to popular support for secession in its southern and eastern regions, along with Baltimore, all of which benefited greatly from both the tobacco and slave trades. When Union soldiers from the Sixth Massachusetts state militia and some unarmed Pennsylvania state militia known as the "Washington Brigade" from Philadelphia with their band marched through the city at the start of the war, Confederate sympathizers attacked the troops, which led to the Baltimore riot of 1861, known as the "Pratt Street Riots". Four soldiers and twelve civilians were killed during the riot, which caused Union troops to later occupy Baltimore in May under Gen. Benjamin F. Butler of Massachusetts. Maryland came under direct federal administration, in part, to prevent the state from seceding, until the end of the war in April 1865.

6th_Regiment.jpgFollowing an economic depression known as the Panic of 1873, the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad company attempted to lower its workers' wages, leading to the Great Railroad Strike of 1877. On July 20, 1877, Maryland Governor John Lee Carroll called up the 5th and 6th Regiments of the National Guard to end the strikes, which had disrupted train service at Cumberland in western Maryland. Citizens sympathetic to the railroad workers attacked the National Guard troops as they marched from their armories in Baltimore to Camden Station. Soldiers from the 6th Regiment fired on the crowd, killing 10 and wounding 25. Rioters then damaged B&O trains and burned portions of the rail station. Order was restored in the city on July 21-22 when federal troops arrived to protect railroad property and end the strike.

GreatBaltimoreFire.jpg20th Century  On February 7, 1904, the Great Baltimore Fire destroyed over 1,500 buildings in 30 hours, leaving more than 70 blocks of the downtown area burned to the ground. Damages were estimated at $150 million in 1904 dollars. As the city rebuilt during the next two years, lessons learned from the fire led to improvements in firefighting equipment standards.

The city grew in area by annexing new suburbs from the surrounding counties, the last being in 1918, when the city acquired portions of Baltimore County and Anne Arundel County. A state constitutional amendment, approved in 1948, required a special vote of the citizens in any proposed annexation area, effectively preventing any future expansion of the city's boundaries. The relative size of the city's black population grew from 23.8% in 1950 to 46.4% in 1970. The Baltimore riot of 1968 occurred following the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. in Memphis, Tennessee, on April 4, 1968. Coinciding with riots in other cities, public order was not restored until April 12, 1968. The Baltimore riot cost the city of Baltimore an estimated $10 million (US$ 68 million in 2015). A total of 11,000 Maryland National Guard and federal troops were ordered into the city. Lasting effects of the riot can be seen on the streets of North Avenue, Howard Street, Gay Street, and Pennsylvania Avenue, where long stretches of the streets remain barren. The city experienced tumult again in 1974 when teachers, municipal workers, and police officers conducted strikes.

By the beginning of the 1970s, Baltimore's downtown area known as the Inner Harbor had been neglected and was occupied by a collection of abandoned warehouses. Efforts to redevelop the area started with the construction of the Maryland Science Center, which opened in 1976, the Baltimore World Trade Center (1977), and the Baltimore Convention Center (1979). Harborplace, an urban retail and restaurant complex, opened on the waterfront in 1980, followed by the National Aquarium, Maryland's largest tourist destination, and the Baltimore Museum of Industry in 1981. In 1992, the Baltimore Orioles baseball team moved from Memorial Stadium to Oriole Park at Camden Yards, located downtown near the harbor. Six years later the Baltimore Ravens football team moved into M&T Bank Stadium next to Camden Yards.

The city has 280 properties identified as historical in the National Register of Historic Places.

The historical records of the government of Baltimore are located at the Baltimore City Archives.



"Map of Metropolitan Baltimore, Maryland"

Image © Google Maps


The Baltimore-Washington Thurgood Marshall International Airport has mutliple airlines serving US and International markets. The airport serves over sixty thousand passengers a day. The following is a list of some of the airlines with gates at BWI: American Airlines, Delta, Jet Blue, Southwest Airlines, Spirit Airlines; United and, US Airways. For more information visit the Baltimore-Washington Thurgood Marshall website:

Rental Cars

Rental Car companies located at the Baltimore-Washington Thurgood Marshall International Airport and at various locations in Baltimore include: Avis, Alamo, Budget, Dollar, Enterprise, Flight Car, Hertz, National, Next Car, Payless and, Thrifty.


AMTRAK provide direct service to Baltimore from East Coast cities.

For information by telephone call: 800-USA-RAIL. Visit online at the Amtrak web site:

Highway Access by Bus or Automobile

Greyhound Bus lines provides bus service into and out of Baltimore. For more information concerning schedule and route information, contact Greyhound Bus Lines. Visit online at the Greyhound web site:

The major interstate highways serving Charleston, South Carolina, are Interstate Highway 95 from the North & South; Interstate Highway 83 from the North; Interstate HIghway 70 from the West; and Interstate 97 from Annapolis. US Highways US-1, US-29 and US-40 also serve Metro-Baltimore.


BALTIMORE — The very name evokes vivid images - from Fort McHenry, to Fells Point, to the Baltimore Orioles & the Ravens, to Inner Harbor and Blue Crabs & Seafood feasts. The area's many attractions paint a picture of this unique Maryland city and leave an indelible impression on all who visit.

Baltimore is the largest city in the State of Maryland, the largest independent city in the United States, and the 26th-most populous city in the country. It is located in the central area of the state along the tidal portion of the Patapsco River, an arm of the Chesapeake Bay. The independent city is often referred to as Baltimore City to distinguish it from the surrounding Baltimore County.

Baltimore - or "Bol mor", as some locals are known to say - has more attractions than room here permits. Additionally, the city is within reasonable day trips to Annapolis, Maryland; Washington, District of Columbia; Gettysburg, Pennsylvania; Wilmington, Delaware; and Philiadelphia, Pennsylvania.


Daytime Panoramic View of Baltimore
Photo by BRLAW8,© CC BY-SA 4.0 ,courtesy of Wikipedia.

Go to the VISIT BALTIMORE™ web site. This web site will introduce you to all of the exciting attractions, fun things to do, and excellent dinning that the city of Baltimore, Maryland, has to offer.


Night time Panoramic View of Baltimore
Photo by BRLAW8,© CC BY-SA 4.0 ,courtesy of Wikipedia.

Un-referenced photos in the above article were provided courtesy of Wikipedia's article BALTIMORE (Copyright © Wikipedia)

The above article, in part, was extracted from and is courtesy of Wikipeidia' article BALTIMORE (Copyright © Wikipedia)

A popular song of the Confederacy.
MIDI arranged by Barry Taylor.

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