Landmarks from the Movement

Baltimore’s Civil Rights Heritage: Looking for Landmarks from the Movement is an ongoing project to research and document the historic context for the long Civil Rights movement for African Americans in Baltimore. This tour features significant places associated with Baltimore's Civil Rights movement including several that are currently threatened with neglect or demolition.

Douglas Memorial Community Church

Douglas Memorial Community Church was built is 1857 for the Madison Avenue Methodist Episcopal Church. The building boasts a grand Greek Revival design by architect Thomas Balbirnie with a sanctuary that seats a thousand people and an…

Union Baptist Church

The Union Baptist Church was built in 1905 under the leadership of Rev. Dr. Harvey Johnson and financed entirely by African Americans. The congregation was formed in 1852, the fifth oldest African American congregation in Baltimore. In 1892, the…

Freedom House

1234 Druid Hill Avenue had a story unlike any other. When builders erected the house in the nineteenth century it was one of many handsome Italianate rowhouses in the northwestern suburbs of the city. In 1899, as the neighborhood changed from white…

Mitchell Family Law Office

An accomplished lawyer and activist, Juanita Jackson Mitchell organized the Citywide Young People's Forum in the 1930s to push for more opportunity for black youth during the Great Depression. Clarence Mitchell, Jr. served as the long-time…

Harry Sythe Cummings House

A neglected brick rowhouse at 1318 Druid Hill Avenue was once the residence of Baltimore’s first black City Councilman Harry S. Cummings.Harry S. Cummings, his wife Blanche Teresa Conklin and their two children Louise Virginia and Harry Sythe…

Juanita Jackson and Clarence Mitchell, Jr. House

Juanita Jackson and Clarence Mitchell moved to 1324 Druid Hill Avenue in 1942, the same year Clarence started working at the Fair Employment Practices Commission set up by President Roosevelt to fight workplace discrimination during WWII. Visitors at…

Public School No. 103

Built in 1877, this historic school on Division Street originally served only white students until 1910 when the building was first used for black students from Public School No. 112. In March 1911, the school was officially designated Public School…

Lillie Mae Carroll Jackson Museum

Born in 1889, Lillie Mae Carroll was the seventh of eight children in her family. Her father was Methodist minister Charles Henry Carroll. In 1935, she became the leader of the Baltimore Chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of…

Sharp Street Memorial United Methodist Church

The congregation at Sharp Street Memorial United Methodist Church began in 1787, the first African American Methodist congregation in Baltimore. By 1802, the congregants had purchased their first building on Sharp Street between Lombard and Pratt…

Warner T. McGuinn House

A native of Goochland County, near Richmond, Virginia, Warner T. McGuinn was born less than two years before the Civil War in November 1859. His parents, Jared and Fannie McGuinn, sent him to public school in Richmond and then he went on to graduate…

Dr. John E.T. Camper House

639 N. Carey Street is the former residence of Dr. J.E.T. Camper. In 1942, Baltimore NAACP official Dr. J. E. T. Camper and Juanita Mitchell worked with the Citizens Committee for Justice (CCJ), to lead 2,000 people from 150 groups on a march on…

St. Peter Claver Catholic Church

Saint Peter Claver Church at Pennsylvania Avenue and Fremont Street takes its’ name from a sixteenth-century Spanish priest who is considered the patron saint of slaves. The building dates back to 1888 making it the city’s second oldest…

Congressman Parren Mitchell House

1805 Madison Avenue was built around 1886, when the property was first advertised in the Baltimore Sun as available to rent for $35 per month. In July 1888, Benjamin and Rosetta Rosenheim purchased the home and moved in with their two young…

Walter Sondheim Residence

1621 Bolton Street is the childhood home of Walter Sondheim, Jr.: a local business executive and civic leader who is best known for his role as president of the Baltimore City School Board as the city first sought to put an end to racially segregated…

Druid Hill Park Pool No. 2

Built in 1921, Pool No. 2 in Druid Hill Park served the recreational and competitive swimming needs of over 100,000 African Americans in Baltimore. Pool No. 2 measured just 100’ x 105’ (half the size of whites-only Pool No. 1), but proved so…

Orchard Street Church

Constructed in 1882, the Orchard Street United Methodist Church is the oldest standing structure built by African Americans in Baltimore. The church was established by Trueman Pratt, a free black born into slavery in Anne Arundel County, who began…

Arena Playhouse

The Arena Playhouse at 801 McCulloh Street has been occupied by the Arena Players, an African American theatre troupe, since 1962. Established in 1953 as an outgrowth of the “The Negro Little Theater”, the Arena Players spent a decade performing…

Read's Drug Store

Though the Baltimore Sun heralded the structure at the southeast corner of Howard and Lexington as an Art Deco design icon from the time of its construction in 1934, this building's role as an early and vital witness to a historic, but long…

Lord Baltimore Hotel

Built in 1928, the Lord Baltimore Hotel is a beautiful example of an early twentieth-century high-rise hotel. Designed by prolific hotel architect William Lee Stoddart, it is reminiscent of such famous American hotels as New York's Vanderbilt Hotel…

Ford's Theatre

Baltimore activists have a long history of fighting discrimination and segregation in the city’s public establishments. In the years after World War II, the NAACP and their allies worked to end segregated seating at Ford’s Theatre on Fayette…

Leadenhall Baptist Church

Built in 1873 by the Maryland Baptist Union Association for black Baptists in south Baltimore, Leadenhall Baptist Church has long been a center of activism and source of strength for African Americans in south Baltimore and the Sharp Leadenhall…

William “Little Willie” and Victorine Q. Adams Residence

On October 13, 1935, William “Little Willie” Adams and Victorine Quille were married at Saint Peter Claver Catholic Church. The young businessman and the school teacher each came from different backgrounds. William Adams, originally of Zebulon,…

Preston Gardens

Built between 1914 and 1919, Preston Gardens is a linear park along Saint Paul Street. Few people know that Preston Gardens was once the site of a thriving black community up through the early twentieth century. Black lawyers, religious leaders, and…

Levering Hall on Johns Hopkins University Homewood Campus

Built in 1928-1929, Levering Hall is named in honor of Eugene Levering, a local banker. Levering, who served as a trustee for Johns Hopkins University from 1898 to 1928, donated the funds to build a YMCA on land provided by Johns Hopkins…

Morgan State University Memorial Chapel

In 1939, the trustees of Morgan College decided to sell the institution to the State of Maryland. The proceeds from that transaction were earmarked for the construction of a center for religious activities, the Morgan Christian Center (now Morgan…
This tour is supported by the NPS Heritage Initiatives Program, the Preservation Maryland Heritage Fund, and the PNC Foundation.