Doors Open Baltimore Offers Rare Public Access to Historic Landmarks

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Maryland Historical Society, The Info Hub for Doors Open Baltimore

In the 1800s, Clipper Mill famously housed the largest machine shop in the country, Poole and Hunt Foundry and Machine Works. Machinery ranging from steam engines to locomotive parts was produced there and helped power the Industrial Revolution. Fast forward to 1995, long after it closed down, and an eight-alarm fire nearly destroyed what remained of the factory’s Assembly Building. But in the past two decades, the remaining Clipper Mill complex has been revitalized and is now home to a vibrant residential and commercial hub.

Later this month, visitors can take a peek inside and learn about the rich history of that complex and more than 50 other historic buildings with Doors Open Baltimore, a weekend-long effort from the Baltimore Architecture Foundation in partnership with AIABaltimore. That weekend, organizers will unlock the doors of notable buildings and landmarks in Baltimore, with open houses on Saturday, Oct. 28, and historic and Halloween-themed events on Sunday, Oct. 29, including a Day of the Dead celebration at the Walters Art Museum, and a spooky, private tour of the Edgar Allan Poe House and Museum. (Advance registration is requested for Sunday’s special events at

Doors Open Baltimore kicks off with a lecture on Thursday, Oct. 26, from 6-7:30 p.m. in the Earl G. Graves School of Business & Management auditorium at Morgan State University. Professor Dale Glenwood Green will showcase Maryland’s African-American architects who practiced prior to 1970, with a special focus on their education, experience and emergence.

The official tour begins two days later at the Maryland Historical Society, the official information hub for the event. There, visitors can pick up a Doors Open Baltimore map and brochure and take advantage of free admission to the museum and the historic Enoch Pratt House. The rest is up to the visitors, who head self-guide their own adventures throughout the city to any of the 50 other sites on the tour.

Is it actually possible to make it into all of them in one weekend?

“It would be an incredible feat,” said Nathan Dennies, spokesman for the event. “We should offer a medal to anyone who could accomplish it. Maybe next year!”

Doors Open Baltimore invites all visitors to make their own itineraries from the map, and to take advantage to public transportation whenever possible. For complete info on Doors Open Baltimore events and participating locations, visit

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  1. The 17th Annual Baltimore City Historical Society Baltimore History Honors program and reception is 3pm to 5pm Saturday October 28, 2017 on the Parks & People Foundation campus located at 2100 Liberty Heights Avenue, Baltimore 21217. BALTIMORE HISTORY HONORS will be a special event during Doors Open Baltimore 2017. Baltimore History Honors will be free; donations helping BCHS cover expenses will be welcome. The honorees are noted below in three categories.

    Scholars who have published & are respected in the historian community:

    Christopher Brown, The Road to Jim Crow, the African-American Struggle on Maryland’s Eastern Shore author, retired professor at the University of Maryland School of Law, civil rights litigator;

    David S. Bogen, professor at the University of Maryland School of Law, 1969-2006, author of numerous articles on civil rights;

    Living History, who exemplify the civic value of community involvement and enhancement:

    Mary Pat Clarke, City Councilwoman, historic preservation advocate;

    Lou Fields, black history tourism entrepreneur;

    Raelynne Snyder, BCPS Social Studies Coordinator, greatly improved Baltimore City’s showing in the History Fairs;

    Lew Diuguid, retired editor of the Gaslight;

    In Memoriam, recognizing those for their contributions to our history:

    Jody Albright, promoted arts education in City & State;

    Meredith Millspaugh, executive director of the Evergreen Museum, and sat on numerous civic boards, including CHAP;

    Margaret Armstrong, promoted arts in Baltimore public schools, helped found Baltimore School for the Arts & Loyola Academy.

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