Top of page

Photo, Print, Drawing Peabody Institute of the City of Baltimore, 1 East Mount Vernon Place, Baltimore, Baltimore (Independent City), MD

[ Photos from Survey HABS MD-1157  ]

More Resources

[ Data Pages from Survey HABS MD-1157  ]
[ Photo Captions from Survey HABS MD-1157  ]

About this Item

Title

  • Peabody Institute of the City of Baltimore, 1 East Mount Vernon Place, Baltimore, Baltimore (Independent City), MD

Names

  • Historic American Buildings Survey, creator
  • Lind & Murdoch Architects
  • Lind, Edmund G.
  • Niernsee, John R.
  • Neilson, James Crawford
  • Hunt, Richard M.
  • Peabody, George
  • Morison, Nathaniel Holmes
  • Stone, Edward Durrell
  • Parker, Thomas & Rice Architects
  • Leakin, J. Wilson
  • Johns Hopkins University
  • Price, Virginia Barrett, transmitter
  • Christianson, Justine, transmitter
  • Price, Virginia Barrett, historian
  • Perschler, Martin J., project manager
  • Rosenthal, James W., photographer

Created / Published

  • Documentation compiled after 1933

Headings

  • -  libraries
  • -  concert halls
  • -  music rooms
  • -  education
  • -  philanthropy
  • -  music
  • -  galleries & museums
  • -  ironwork
  • -  galleries (rooms & spaces)
  • -  marble
  • -  Doric order
  • -  porticoes (porches)
  • -  stages (platforms)
  • -  Palladian windows
  • -  pilasters
  • -  Maryland--Baltimore (Independent City)--Baltimore

Latitude / Longitude

  • 39.297194,-76.615201

Notes

  • -  Significance: Remarkable for what it represents more so than for its classically inspired architectural statement on Mount Vernon Place, the Peabody Institute of the City of Baltimore was conceived in the 1850s, funded by George Peabody, and opened to the public in 1866. The Institute was founded as a cultural center for Baltimore city that would offer to its constituency a free, public reference library, a conservatory of music, an art gallery, and lecture series. Peabody hoped that it would be "useful towards the improvement of the moral and intellectual culture of the inhabitants of Baltimore, [and] towards the enlargement and diffusion of a taste for the Fine Arts." At the time, Peabody's Institute was unparalleled in scope; the Trustees gushed over the "splendid [...] monument of enlightened Philosophy and exalted Patriotism" that Peabody gave to the city. Some went even further, endowing their own charities for public benefit namely the Enoch Pratt Free Library and the Johns Hopkins University and Medical School, while Peabody's philanthropic influence over others is more circumstantial such as William T. Walters and his son Henry, avid collectors of art who opened their home and private art gallery to the public on a limited basis with proceeds benefitting the local poor association. Henry Walters bequeathed his home and art gallery to the city in 1931. Peabody also swayed these Baltimorians in the siting of their institutions, for each was near by, in or close to Mount Vernon Place. Architecturally, Peabody was less specific about what he wanted, noting only that the Institute should be housed in a building "of character to elevate the taste of the City [with] a most capacious lecture room and a splendid music saloon." In 1857, Peabody's confidants John P. Kennedy and William E. Mayhew, both later serving on the Board of Trustees, summarized his wishes for the building as having "a large central hall provid[ing] a library with necessary reading rooms attached to it. The design should contain commodious lecture rooms capable of accommodating 2000 persons and above it a large hall for music." Peabody, it appears, named the spaces needed by the Institute to fulfill his ambitions for it; but it was architect Edmund G. Lind who, together with the Building Committee of the Board and Superintendents Jos[eph] F. Kemp and George G. Zimmerman, translated Peabody's notions of room use into a tangible expression. Cognizant of their responsibility to Peabody and the citizens of Baltimore, the fiscally conscious Board planned for the structure to be built in two phases, calling for designs capable of harmonious expansion. The Peabody Library, the main programmatic focus of the Institute originally, was built in the second wave of construction in the 1870s. Occupying the east or new wing, the library is a spectacular space framed in six stories of alcove book-stacks, including five gallery levels, all made of cast and wrought iron, decorated in paint and gold, and filled with rare folios. It is this "cathedral of books" that has captured the imagination, and admiration, of architectural historians and bibliophiles alike.
  • -  Unprocessed Field note material exists for this structure: N1436
  • -  Survey number: HABS MD-1157
  • -  Building/structure dates: 1858-1861 Initial Construction
  • -  Building/structure dates: 1866 Subsequent Work
  • -  Building/structure dates: 1875-1878 Subsequent Work
  • -  Building/structure dates: 1926 Subsequent Work
  • -  National Register of Historic Places NRIS Number: 71001037

Medium

  • Photo(s): 3
  • Color Transparencies: 1
  • Data Page(s): 54
  • Photo Caption Page(s): 2

Call Number/Physical Location

  • HABS MD-1157

Source Collection

  • Historic American Buildings Survey (Library of Congress)

Repository

Control Number

  • md1621

Rights Advisory

Online Format

  • image
  • pdf

Rights & Access

The Library of Congress does not own rights to material in its collections. Therefore, it does not license or charge permission fees for use of such material and cannot grant or deny permission to publish or otherwise distribute the material.

Ultimately, it is the researcher's obligation to assess copyright or other use restrictions and obtain permission from third parties when necessary before publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the Library's collections.

For information about reproducing, publishing, and citing material from this collection, as well as access to the original items, see: Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record/Historic American Landscape Survey (HABS/HAER/HALS) Collection - Rights and Restrictions Information

  • Rights Advisory: No known restrictions on images made by the U.S. Government; images copied from other sources may be restricted. https://www.loc.gov/rr/print/res/114_habs.html
  • Reproduction Number: ---
  • Call Number: HABS MD-1157
  • Access Advisory: ---

Obtaining Copies

If an image is displaying, you can download it yourself. (Some images display only as thumbnails outside the Library of Congress because of rights considerations, but you have access to larger size images on site.)

Alternatively, you can purchase copies of various types through Library of Congress Duplication Services.

  1. If a digital image is displaying: The qualities of the digital image partially depend on whether it was made from the original or an intermediate such as a copy negative or transparency. If the Reproduction Number field above includes a reproduction number that starts with LC-DIG..., then there is a digital image that was made directly from the original and is of sufficient resolution for most publication purposes.
  2. If there is information listed in the Reproduction Number field above: You can use the reproduction number to purchase a copy from Duplication Services. It will be made from the source listed in the parentheses after the number.

    If only black-and-white ("b&w") sources are listed and you desire a copy showing color or tint (assuming the original has any), you can generally purchase a quality copy of the original in color by citing the Call Number listed above and including the catalog record ("About This Item") with your request.

  3. If there is no information listed in the Reproduction Number field above: You can generally purchase a quality copy through Duplication Services. Cite the Call Number listed above and include the catalog record ("About This Item") with your request.

Price lists, contact information, and order forms are available on the Duplication Services Web site.

Access to Originals

Please use the following steps to determine whether you need to fill out a call slip in the Prints and Photographs Reading Room to view the original item(s). In some cases, a surrogate (substitute image) is available, often in the form of a digital image, a copy print, or microfilm.

  1. Is the item digitized? (A thumbnail (small) image will be visible on the left.)

    • Yes, the item is digitized. Please use the digital image in preference to requesting the original. All images can be viewed at a large size when you are in any reading room at the Library of Congress. In some cases, only thumbnail (small) images are available when you are outside the Library of Congress because the item is rights restricted or has not been evaluated for rights restrictions.
      As a preservation measure, we generally do not serve an original item when a digital image is available. If you have a compelling reason to see the original, consult with a reference librarian. (Sometimes, the original is simply too fragile to serve. For example, glass and film photographic negatives are particularly subject to damage. They are also easier to see online where they are presented as positive images.)
    • No, the item is not digitized. Please go to #2.
  2. Do the Access Advisory or Call Number fields above indicate that a non-digital surrogate exists, such as microfilm or copy prints?

    • Yes, another surrogate exists. Reference staff can direct you to this surrogate.
    • No, another surrogate does not exist. Please go to #3.
  3. If you do not see a thumbnail image or a reference to another surrogate, please fill out a call slip in the Prints and Photographs Reading Room. In many cases, the originals can be served in a few minutes. Other materials require appointments for later the same day or in the future. Reference staff can advise you in both how to fill out a call slip and when the item can be served.

To contact Reference staff in the Prints and Photographs Reading Room, please use our Ask A Librarian service or call the reading room between 8:30 and 5:00 at 202-707-6394, and Press 3.

Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Historic American Buildings Survey, Creator, Lind & Murdoch Architects, Edmund G Lind, John R Niernsee, James Crawford Neilson, Richard M Hunt, George Peabody, et al., Rosenthal, James W, photographer. Peabody Institute of the City of Baltimore, 1 East Mount Vernon Place, Baltimore, Baltimore Independent City, MD. Maryland Baltimore Independent City, 1933. translateds by Price, Virginia Barrettmitter, and Christianson, Justinemitter Documentation Compiled After. Photograph. https://www.loc.gov/item/md1621/.

APA citation style:

Historic American Buildings Survey, C., Lind & Murdoch Architects, Lind, E. G., Niernsee, J. R., Neilson, J. C., Hunt, R. M. [...] Perschler, M. J., Rosenthal, J. W., photographer. (1933) Peabody Institute of the City of Baltimore, 1 East Mount Vernon Place, Baltimore, Baltimore Independent City, MD. Maryland Baltimore Independent City, 1933. Price, V. B. & Christianson, J., transs Documentation Compiled After. [Photograph] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/md1621/.

MLA citation style:

Historic American Buildings Survey, Creator, et al., photographer by Rosenthal, James W. Peabody Institute of the City of Baltimore, 1 East Mount Vernon Place, Baltimore, Baltimore Independent City, MD. trans by Price, Virginia Barrettmitter, and Christianson, Justinemitter Documentation Compiled After. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <www.loc.gov/item/md1621/>.