Tag: arthur “smokestack” hardy

Baltimore’s Best Secret Museums

A mosaic mask from Mexico, on display at the Johns Hopkins Archaeological Museum.

We here at Baltimore Fishbowl may love the BMA/Walters/American Visionary Arts Museum, but sometimes we’re just in the mood for something a little… different. Good thing Baltimore has its fair share of oddball museums, shrines, and other cabinets of curiosity that you may have never heard of before. Four of our favorites below:

The Arthur “Smokestack” Hardy Fire Museum
It’s rare that a museum is as specific — and as heartfelt — as this one, which honors Baltimore’s first African-American firefighter (and the founder of the first black firefighters’ club in the nation). Housed in the front room of a West Baltimore rowhouse, the museum uses Hardy’s store to tell stories of civil rights, the Great Fire of 1904, and the history of black Baltimore. Caveat:  This museum is in someone’s house, so you’ve got to call ahead; to visit, call Guy Cephas at 443-919-9310.