A segment of land near two historic beaches in Annapolis will be transformed into a public park, Governor Hogan announced Monday.
The 5.17-acre property near Carr’s Beach and Sparrow’s Beach – two resorts on the Chesapeake Bay that served the Black community at a time when beaches were segregated – was once owned by the Carr family.
In the 1940s, 50s, and 60s, Carr’s Beach, known as the “Beach,” hosted prominent musicians such as Billie Holiday, Ike and Tina Turner, The Shirelles, Little Richard, Chuck Berry, and The Temptations.
“Carr’s Beach was once a location where my mother enjoyed concerts in the late 1940s, and I’m proud that this partnership will help bring new life to an area that greatly contributed to the rich cultural fabric of Annapolis and the State of Maryland,” Lt. Governor Boyd K. Rutherford said in a news release.
The state of Maryland will provide $4.8 million towards the purchase of the property, Hogan said Monday.
The funding will come from a combination of state and local sources. The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is committing $3.68 million in Program Open Space funding, which will supplement local funding from the City of Annapolis and Anne Arundel County. Hogan also committed $1.2 million in Local Parks and Playgrounds Infrastructure funding to the Blacks of the Chesapeake Foundation for the acquisition.
In addition to state and local funding, $2 million in federal funding will go towards the project.
“The significance of Carr’s Beach to the history of Annapolis can never be overstated,” Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley said in a statement.
“For over three decades, the beach was the place to play. From Sarah Vaughan to James Brown to Stevie Wonder, all the greats came to play on the water and look out at the Chesapeake Bay,” he said, “We now have an opportunity to preserve this site and get it the national recognition it deserves.”