Discover Baltimore: The Monumental City

Discover Baltimore: The Monumental City (HM1OH3)

Location: Baltimore, MD 21202
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Country: United States of America
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N 39° 17.444', W 76° 36.746'

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Heritage Walk

The Battle Monument was America's first public war memorial and the first since antiquity to honor the common soldier. Designed by Maximilian Godefroy, its construction began in 1815, shortly after the event it commemorates: in 1814, after the British burned Washington, D.C., they sailed to Baltimore intent on destroying that "nest of pirates." Baltimoreans held off the British in fierce fighting at North Point and withstood a 25-hour bombardment of Fort McHenry, immortalized in Francis Scott Key's "Star Spangled Banner."

Monument Square was a key site for public assembly and debate even before the monument was built. The city's original courthouse stood here, and the Declaration of Independence was first read to Baltimoreans on the courthouse steps. In 1864, African Americans assembled here to celebrate the state's new emancipation law, and gathered again in 1870 to mark the passing of the Fifteenth Amendment. When the current courthouse opened in 1901, newspapers touted it as America's best example of Beaux Arts architecture. Today, it is named in honor of Baltimore civil rights leader Clarence Mitchell.

The Douglass Institute opened nearby in 1865. As the premier institution for Baltimore African Americans, it housed meeting rooms, fraternal organizations, a high school, newspaper, library, and offices of the Republican Party. At its opening Frederick Douglass declared, "The establishment of an institution bearing my name by the colored people in the city of my boyhood, so soon after the act of emancipation in this state, looms before me as a first grand indication of progress." On the north side of Monument Square stands the Negro Soldier statue, by local sculptor James Lewis, which honors all African American soldiers.
HM NumberHM1OH3
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, October 8th, 2015 at 9:01am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 360946 N 4350279
Decimal Degrees39.29073333, -76.61243333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 39° 17.444', W 76° 36.746'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds39° 17' 26.64" N, 76° 36' 44.76" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)301, 410, 443
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 101-199 N Calvert St, Baltimore MD 21202, US
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