Carroll Park is Baltimore's third oldest city park and was originally part of the enormous Mount Clare plantation owned by Charles Carroll, Barrister in the mid-eighteenth century. The park was the site of Camp Carroll during the Civil War and, in the 30 years prior to becoming a park, the area surrounding Mt. Clare was leased from the Carrolls and became Southwestern Schuetzen Park—a private recreation area used by Baltimore's German immigrant community.
In 1890, the City purchased 20 acres of the former estate to create Carroll Park and in 1906 engaged the Olmsted Brothers to develop a master plan. The famous firm’s recommendations respected the historic character of the west side, including the Mt. Clare mansion, while providing for sports facilities on the east, in keeping with the trend toward more active recreation for urban dwellers.
The Carroll Park Golf Course, on a separate parcel farther west, became the focus of Civil Rights protests over segregation and was integrated in 1951; it features a 9-hole executive course. The Gwynns Falls Trail passes through the edge of the golf course and the park.