The city of Baltimore, MD is home to a number of historic government buildings that have stood the test of time. One of the oldest and most iconic is the Orchard Street Church, which has been in its current form for nearly 140 years. The church was originally built by the city's black community in 1839, led by Truman Pratt, a free black man who was born as a slave. After 14 years of holding prayer meetings at his home in Baltimore, Pratt and other free slaves and blacks erected what was initially known as “Orchard Chapel” in a business directory in the city. When Pratt passed away in 1877 at the age of 102, the congregation was too small for his church.
In 1882, a new Romanesque Renaissance-style building was constructed on the same site. This building featured a mix of Renaissance-inspired details and a distinctive Gothic window above its doors, which was later described as the “most colorful house of worship in the state”.Throughout its history, the Orchard Street Church has been an important part of Baltimore's government and culture. It has hosted meetings of colored troops from the United States and was home to the Maryland Colored Literary Union. Today, it is still standing and is now home to the Greater Baltimore Urban League. In addition to the Orchard Street Church, there are several other government buildings in Baltimore that have stood for centuries.
The Old Town Hall is one of the oldest surviving public buildings in Baltimore and dates back to 1797. It served as a meeting place for local government officials until it was replaced by City Hall in 1875. The Old Town Hall is now part of the Maryland Historical Society. The Battle Monument is another historic government building in Baltimore that dates back to 1815. It was built to commemorate those who died during the Battle of North Point during the War of 1812. The monument stands at an impressive 55 feet tall and is topped with a bronze statue of Major General Samuel Smith. The Washington Monument is another iconic government building in Baltimore that has been standing since 1829. It stands at an impressive 178 feet tall and is topped with a marble statue of George Washington. The monument was designed by Robert Mills and is one of the oldest monuments dedicated to George Washington in the United States. These are just a few examples of some of the oldest government buildings in Baltimore, MD. Each one has its own unique history and has played an important role in Baltimore's past and present.