Get Lost in History
The city of Baltimore, Maryland was founded in 1729. It’s very close to our nation’s capital, and has a rich history of welcoming immigrants, hosting important meetings (including the Second Continental Congress), and serving as a battlefield for the American Revolution and the War of 1812. Because of this, it is full of important sites that welcome visitors. Whether you already live in the area and are looking for something to do, or are visiting and want to see some of the roots of our country, these four historical sites will provide you with a good starting point.
– Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine/Hampton National Historic Site, 2400 East Fort Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21230
Fort McHenry is the site of an important battle in the War of 1812. Citizens were about to defend the country from this waterfront location. It’s also recognized as the place where the Star Spangled Banner was written by Francis Scott Key. The fort itself is shaped like a star, based on defensive plans that date back hundreds of years, and the building served as a prison for captured Confederate soldiers during the Civil War. Now, Fort McHenry is a National Park and Monument, and is open to visitors throughout most of the year.
– Edgar Allen Poe House and Museum, 203 North Amity Street, Baltimore, MD 21223
Poet and author Edgar Allen Poe may have been born in Boston, Massachusetts, but he spent most of his life in Baltimore, and is buried there as well. His poem “The Raven” is the namesake behind the Baltimore Ravens football team. Even if you aren’t a sports fan, you’ve no doubt heard one of his works quoted. The home where Edgar Allen Poe spent several years – and the place where he wrote some of his famed stories and poems between the years of 1833 and 1835 – has been turned into a museum dedicated to him.
– Baltimore Civil War Museum, 601 President Street Harbor East, Baltimore, MD 21202
The building housing the Baltimore Civil War Museum was built in 1849 and served as a stop on the Underground Railroad, helping slaves escape to freedom. Several years later, in 1861, it became the site of the first casualties in the U.S. Civil War. Originally designed as a train station, and also known as the President Street Station, the museum is now dedicated to the local history of the Civil War, including the 6th Massachusetts Regiment – the group of soldiers involved in that first bloody battle.
– Babe Ruth Birthplace Museum, 216 Emory Street, Baltimore, MD 21230
Even non-baseball fans have heard of Babe Ruth. The building (then a series of row houses) in which he was born in 1895 is now a National Historic Site, and has been turned into a museum dedicated to his early life, baseball career, and life after baseball. It is run by the Babe Ruth Birthplace Foundation, and is open for tours year-round. Exhibits include his baseball jerseys and related memorabilia.
Baltimore is filled with history. These four places are just a handful of the many historic sites located in and around the city. Consider putting at least one of them on your must-see list the next time you’re in town.