Tuesday, August 28, 2018

110 Years Ago, This Month

One hundred and ten years ago, we were just a hole in the ground waiting to be filled. 

You can see the School #49 building, which we now own, just to the south (right). And there's a residence, just to the north (left). 
Two month's later, significant progress had been made, and by May of 1909, the building had been completed. 

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Ellicott & Emmart, Architects

There is an image of the 1909 MedChi building that is a watercolor rendering of the building, which looks to have been painted around the time of its construction. 
The building was designed by the firm of Ellicott & Emmart, comprised of William M. Ellicott, Jr. and William Wirt Emmart. They designed some other buildings in Baltimore, both together as a firm, as well as on their own. 

Among the more notable were St. David's Church in Roland Park, 

some of the buildings at Charlestown Retirement Home in Catonsville, 

 the Thomas Building in downtown Baltimore,
and the Georgian Revival Patrick Henry School #37 in East Baltimore. 

Of these buildings, I think that School #37 has the most similarities to the Faculty Building. 

Ellicott and Emmart also designed houses in Roland Park and Guilford, including this beautiful one on Bishop's Road. It was owned for years by Milton Eisenhower, the brother of President Dwight Eisenhower.

William Wirt Emmart (1869–1949) came by architecture naturally: his grandfather was an architect. Emmart attended Baltimore City College, and then the Maryland Institute College of Art for architecture. He is described in a family history as being "devoted to the improvement and ornamentation of Baltimore."

In the early part of the 1900's, Baltimore City's public schools embarked on a program to build a number of new schools, specifically using local architects. Ellicott and Emmart were among those on the list and Emmart was in a perfect position to improve Baltimore. 

Interestingly, early in his career, Emmart worked with Joseph Sperry who designed MedChi's "new" building, the former School #49.

William B. Ellicott was born in 1853 in Philadelphia, and was educated at the Penn Charter School and Haverford College. After a course of architectural study at the University of Pennsylvania, he continued his training in Paris at the Atlier Pascal.

Mr. Ellicott began professional practice in Portland, Oregon, in 1889, and for five years maintained an office under the firm name of Ellicott & Lazarus. Moving to Baltimore soon after the turn of the century he joined William W. Emmart (d. 1949) in partnership and continued that association until his retirement.

In his work in Baltimore, Ellicott established a reputation as a designer of fine suburban homes, also was the architect of a number of public and business structures, among which were St. David's Protestant Episcopal Church and the Colonial Trust Company Building.

Subsequent to his retirement to private life at the age of sixty-four he devoted much of his time to civic and public activities. An exponent of the so-called "Maryland State Plan" Mr. Ellicott worked actively for its establishment for a number of years, and is credited as being largely responsible for the creation by the U. S. Congress in 1926 of the National Park Capitol and Planning Commission. He also organized the first Art Exhibition in Baltimore, and aided in establishing a Museum of Art in the city, of which he afterwards served as Trustee for several years.

We are so proud of our beautiful building which will celebrate 110 years, next May.