The sight of the American flag flying over Fort McHenry inspired Francis Scott Key to pen the 'Star Spangled Banner'. The fort is best known for the part it played during the War of 1812, successfully holding off an attack by the British Navy. When Scott Key saw the flag still flying over the fort after surviving the attack, he wrote the poem that became the national anthem. Today, the fort is a National Historic Park. The restored barracks hold exhibits of military and historical artifacts and a well-kept trail runs along the water's edge, affording spectacular views of ships entering and leaving the busy harbor.
Towering above Mount Vernon Place is Baltimore's Washington Monument. The marble Doric column towers 178 feet (54.25 meters) with a statue of George Washington at its crown. The reward for climbing the steep, winding 228 steps is a breathtaking, bird's-eye view of Baltimore. The base contains a small museum with exhibits chronicling the architecture and development of the monument, which took nearly 15 years to build (1815-1829).
The historic vessels and landmarks of this museum bring to life the history of American naval power. The US Coast Guard Cutter Taney (surviving warship in Pearl Harbor), USS Torsk (fired last two torpedoes in World War II), the lightship Chesapeake (served as floating lighthouse for 40 years) and the Seven Foot Knoll Lighthouse (helped sailors navigate Chesapeake Bay for more than 100 years) all played a vital and heroic role in US military war and peacekeeping. Special student programs are also available at Historic Ships in Baltimore.
Located along the gorgeous Chesapeake Bay, Sandy Point State Park is a 786 acre (318 hectares) park that has been one of the state's natural gems since 1952. The scenic water views make it an ideal place for a picnic or leisurely stroll. The soft sandy beaches are packed on hot summer days and make for a great swimming spot, complete with lifeguards. Fishing and crabbing are also allowed from the park's shoreline, however licenses are required. The marina offers 22 launching ramps for day-use that are on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Ballestone Mansion is ideally located between Back and Middle Rivers. The initial structure was built during the 1800's and was extended during the later years. The mansion is a part of Rocky Point Park and was registered under the National Register of Historic Places in the year 1975.
The Sandy Spring Friends Meeting House is one of the most historically significant structures in Maryland. It was constructed in 1817, and stands listed on the prominent National Register of Historic Places. It is a massive model depicting the Federal style of architecture,
The Peabody Institute was the first conservatory in the United States. It was founded in 1857 by philanthropist George Peabody and has been part of the Johns Hopkins University since 1977. The institute boasts four concert halls and the Peabody Library and is home to the Peabody Conservatory, John Steven Limited which offers private musical lessons and the Peabody Preparatory, a non-degree program that offers classes for people of all ages. Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Dominick Argento and vocalist/pianist Tori Amos attended the institute. Students, faculty and other performers often stage free public concerts.
Built in 1814 by Charles Wilson Peale, one of the first American painters to achieve a place of distinction in the fine arts, the Peale Museum features a collection of 40 Peale family portraits and houses several natural history displays. Peale's collection of specimens gave scientists and visitors the opportunity to study animals and plants outside their natural environment. This museum was the first to display the complete skeleton of a mastodon. It is still standing today and the building was registered as a National Historical Landmark in 1965.
Le Mondo is an initiative by a group of artists and is a hub for art and culture in Baltimore, MD. The center functions as a platform for young artists to exhibit their skills and organizes exhibitions on a regular basis. It functions as a theater and a practice stage for various groups in and around the city. Le Mondo is also available for movie screenings and for small events.
Dating back to 1911, the Emerson Bromo Seltzer tower is credited to Captain Isaac Emerson. A 15 storey structure, it was stylistically inspired by Florence's Palazzo Vecchio tower and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Until 1936, a 51-foot replica of the famed blue bottle revolved on top of the building, illuminated by 596 lights. Today, a blue glow emanates from the tower's cupola and the structure's four clock faces are illuminated at all times, allowing passersby to see the Bromo Seltzer letters that mark the time. The tower is also houses to an arts facility, showcasing exhibitions by resident as well as other artists.