Baltimore's Historical Churches, Baltimore

Baltimore's Historical Churches (Self Guided), Baltimore

Baltimore has many beautiful places of worship, including several buildings listed as National Historic Landmarks. A number of different faiths are represented including Presbyterian, Methodist, Unitarian, Episcopal, Lutheran and Roman Catholic. Take our Places of Worship tour to see the most impressive churches in the city, which come in all different styles including Gothic revival, Norman-Gothic, Tudor-Gothic, 12th Century Italian, Romanesque elements, neoclassical, classical and more.
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Baltimore's Historical Churches Map

Guide Name: Baltimore's Historical Churches
Guide Location: USA » Baltimore (See other walking tours in Baltimore)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 10
Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.3 Km or 2.1 Miles
Author: rose
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • First & Franklin Street
  • Mt. Vernon Place United Methodist Church
  • First Unitarian Church of Baltimore
  • Franklin Street Presbyterian Church and Parsonage
  • Basilica of the Assumption
  • St Alphonsus Church
  • Old St Paul's Church
  • Zion Lutheran Church
  • St Vincent De Paul Church
  • St Leo Roman Catholic Church
First & Franklin Street

1) First & Franklin Street

The First & Franklin Street Presbyterian Church is a rectangular building in Gothic revival style. Its exterior is made of beautiful rose colored Brunswick freestone, while the interior is magnificent in both style and design, especially the charming and grandiose triple ceiling. Baltimore's oldest Presbyterian church, it was established in 1761.
Mt. Vernon Place United Methodist Church

2) Mt. Vernon Place United Methodist Church

The Mount Vernon Place United was established in 1872. This historic United Methodist church was built in a Norman-Gothic style. It's considered by American Institute of Architects as the most important architectural structure in Baltimore, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. All are welcome for Sunday worship each week at 11am.
First Unitarian Church of Baltimore

3) First Unitarian Church of Baltimore

The First Unitarian Church in Baltimore, Maryland was the first building erected for Unitarians in the United States. Completed in 1818, the church is a domed cube with a stucco exterior. The church, originally called the First Independent Church of Baltimore, is the oldest building continuously used by a Unitarian congregation. The building was designed by Maximilian Godefroy and built in 1817. Poor acoustics under the central dome led to an 1893 interior renovation, in which architect Joseph Evans Sperry added a barrel vault under the dome. The church features stained glass from the studio of Louis Comfort Tiffany. The pipe organ was donated by Enoch Pratt and is a Niemann instrument. A relief in the building's pediment was executed by Antonio Cappellano, who had executed the Battle Monument.

The building is significant in the history of Unitarianism as the site of William Ellery Channing's Baltimore Sermon of May 5, 1819, which laid the foundation for the Unitarian denomination. The First Unitarian Church was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on February 11, 1972 and designated a National Historic Landmark on February 20, 1972. It is within the Baltimore National Heritage Area. It is included in the Cathedral Hill Historic District and the Baltimore National Heritage Area.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
Franklin Street Presbyterian Church and Parsonage

4) Franklin Street Presbyterian Church and Parsonage

The Franklin Street Presbyterian Church and Parsonage was built in 1847. It was designed by architect Robert Cary Long, Jr in a Tudor Gothic style. The front features two 60 foot flanking octagonal towers are also crenelated and have louvered belfry openings and stained glass Gothic-arched windows. The parsonage has walls of brick, heavy Tudor-Gothic window hoods, and battlements atop the roof and was built in 1857. No longer used by a Presbyterian congregation, the church and parsonage were listed on the National Register of Historic Places on November 5, 1971. They are included within the Cathedral Hill Historic District and the Baltimore National Heritage Area.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
Basilica of the Assumption

5) Basilica of the Assumption (must see)

The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, also called the Baltimore Basilica, was the first Roman Catholic cathedral built in the United States, and was the first major religious building constructed in the nation after the adoption of the U.S. Constitution. As a co-cathedral, it is one of the seats of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Baltimore in Baltimore. It is considered the masterpiece of Benjamin Henry Latrobe, the "Father of American Architecture".

The Cathedral is a monumental neoclassical-style building designed in conformity to a Latin cross basilica plan — a departure on Latrobe’s part from previous American church architecture, but in keeping with longstanding European traditions of cathedral design. The plan unites two distinct elements: a longitudinal axis and a domed space.

The main facade is a classical Greek portico with Ionic columns arranged in double hexastyle pattern, immediately behind which rise a pair of cylindrical towers. The exterior walls are constructed of silver-gray gneiss quarried near Ellicott City.

The interior is occupied by a massive dome at the crossing of the Latin cross plan, creating a centralizing effect which contrasts the exterior impression of a linear or oblong building. Surrounding the main dome is a sophisticated system of barrel vaults and shallow, saucer-like secondary domes. The light-filled interior designed by Latrobe was striking in contrast to the dark, cavernous recesses of traditional Gothic cathedrals.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
St Alphonsus Church

6) St Alphonsus Church

The St. Alphonsus Catholic Church was designed by architect Robert Cary Long in 1845 in a German Neo-Gothic style. It served the city's German community for 72 years. It's considered by followers to be an important religious site because of the saints who have come to pray here.
Old St Paul's Church

7) Old St Paul's Church

St. Paul's Protestant Episcopal Church, more commonly called Old St. Paul's Church today, is a historic Episcopal church located at 233 North Charles Street in Baltimore. It was founded in 1692 as the parish church for Patapsco Parish, one of the original 30 parishes in colonial Maryland.

St. Paul's was founded in 1692 under the Establishment Act, which created 30 "Protestant" parishes in the colony of Maryland. The first church was located somewhere along Colgate Creek, between modern-day Dundalk and southeastern Baltimore City.

The present church was designed by renowned architect Richard Upjohn, with an eclectic juxtaposition of 12th-century Italian elements on the exterior and Romanesque elements on the interior. The exterior facade features two bas-reliefs, executed by the Italian sculptor Antonio Capellano that were originally part of the façade of the previous church. Other elements from the 1817 structure include the walls of the Federal period building, a stained glass window of the risen Christ over the entrance, a marble baptismal font designed by Maximillian Godefroy, and the Bishop’s chair given to St. Paul’s in 1815.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
Zion Lutheran Church

8) Zion Lutheran Church

Zion Lutheran Church, also known as the Zion Church of the City of Baltimore (formerly known as the German Lutheran Reformed Church), is a historic Lutheran church located in Baltimore, Maryland, United States. The congregation was founded in 1755 in order to serve the needs of Lutheran immigrants from Germany, as well as Germans from Pennsylvania who moved to Baltimore. It has a bilingual congregation that provides sermons in both German and English. In 1762 the congregation built its first church on Fish Street (later East Fayette Street). It was replaced by a bigger building, the current Zion Church on North Gay Street, erected from 1807 to 1808 in a Georgian/Federal-era style. An additional expansion of the church to the west along East Lexington Street to North Holliday Street composed of an "Adlersaal" (Parish House), bell tower, parsonage and a enclosed garden designed of Hanseatic North German architecture was constructed under Rev. Julius K. Hoffman in 1912-1913. In the late 1920s, the entire block south of the church was razed to form a monumental square (known as "War Memorial Plaza" or "City Hall Plaza") opposite the Baltimore City Hall of 1875 on the western side and construction at the eastern end of the War Memorial Building with an auditorium, historical exhibit area and veterans organizations offices. On the south side of the church buildings facing the plaza, a new headquarters for the Baltimore City Fire Department was constructed in a Georgian-Federal style complementing the original Zion Church around the corner.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
St Vincent De Paul Church

9) St Vincent De Paul Church

St. Vincent de Paul Church is a historic Roman Catholic church located at 120 N. Front Street, Baltimore. The church was dedicated in 1841 and is "the oldest Catholic parish church in continuous use in Baltimore."

The church building itself is neoclassical style with brick walls painted white to give it the appearance of wood. Inside there are cast iron columns for support. While the interior has been remodeled several times, the exterior of the church has never been altered.

The church features a slender Georgian-style brick tower, painted white, which rises to a height of 150 feet above the narthex and contrasts sharply with its surroundings. The tower rests on an octagonal base and supports three successive indented tiers (one octagonal and two cylindrical), capped by a copper-sheathed dome and twelve-foot cross.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
St Leo Roman Catholic Church

10) St Leo Roman Catholic Church

The Saint Leo Roman Catholic Church was built in 1880, and has been on the Register of National Historic Places since 1983. Its architecture combines both classical and Romanesque styles. There is a beautiful large rose window in the main façade.

Walking Tours in Baltimore, Maryland

Create Your Own Walk in Baltimore

Create Your Own Walk in Baltimore

Creating your own self-guided walk in Baltimore is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Baltimore's Architectural Jewels

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There's no better way to witness Baltimore's rich history than by going to see its many wonderful buildings and other architectural sights. This tour includes Mount Vernon Place United and a historic district featuring houses built in the early 19th Century. Don’t miss the opportunity to see these places on your trip to Baltimore.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.8 Km or 2.4 Miles
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