This property is really amazing — you have to see it in person to appreciate its impact. Unfortunately, it’s also owned by the City and therefore, falling into ruin. It is on the National Register of Historic Properties.

Property Address: 1313 Druid Hill Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21217 (Home of the Friendless)

Property Owner: Mayor and City Council, 417 E Fayette Street, Baltimore, MD 21202

City Council District and Contact: District 11, Eric T. Costello

State Senator: Shirley Nathan-Pulliam

State Delegate:  Keith Haynes

1313 Druid Hill Avenue -- "Home of the Friendless"
1313 Druid Hill Avenue — “Home of the Friendless”

You can read about the property’s history here.

The original historic register application is here.

From the Maryland Code, 1870:

The justices of the peace for Baltimore city, the trustees of the poor for said city, may commit to the care and charge of the home of the friendless, instead of sending to the almshouse, all children, whether male or female, who are destitute or suffering for want of support, or may be found begging about the streets of the city, or who are children of beggars.

The home of the friendless, and the managers thereof, may retain the said children under their care until they shall be of eighteen years of age, or for any shorter period, and may bind them out for a time, not to exceed the age of eighteen years, in the case of females, and of twenty-one years in the case of males, as apprentices of any trade or business, or in the case of females, also to learn to be useful in housewifery, or may under terms proper, in view of the said managers, and to be stipulated by them, place them for adoption, or as inmates with any families or persons; and the said corporation in the exercise of any of the powers vested in them by this section, of binding or placing out said minors, shall not be limited to places within the State.

All instruments binding out or placing said children shall be in writing, signed by the president and at least two managers of said corporation, and by the persons taking the children as apprentices or otherwise, and shall be acknowledged by the persons signing the same before a justice of the peace for Baltimore city, and within six months of the date thereof recorded in the office of the register of wills of said city.

If any parent or guardian or any any judge of the orphans’ court of Baltimore city, or any justice of the peace for said city shall place under the care and control of the home of the friendless, any child, whether male or female, under the age of eighteen years, of the description of children hereinbefore mentioned, or as suffering through the extreme indigence or vagrancy or bad habits or neglect of parents, or from cruelty of intemperate parents, or as being illegitimate, or children of persons out of the State without sufficient sustenance, the said corporation and the managers thereof shall hold and control such children, with power to bind or place them out as hereinbefore provided.

Any constable or police officer of said city, upon application of any manager of the home of the friendless, or of his own accord, may carry before any judge of the orphans’ court for said city, or any justice of the peace, any child of the description mentioned in the preceding section, to be dealt with as therein provided.

9 thoughts to “City-Owned Historic Blight: 1313 Druid Hill Avenue

  • Timbr

    This location requires 1.5-2 million in renovation. Without grants or Mccolluh home demolition this property will remain in city ownership I’m sure.

  • marti

    Thank you City of Baltimore for being 100% responsible for the current condition of this fabulous property.
    Used by the city of Baltimore for a Community Center in the 70-80’s, then left with the roof hatch open for 20 years to decay. It lies in an American Civil Rights Era and Historic District, adjacent to the recently Henry Highland Garrnet Park, across from Clarence Mitchell Jr. and Juanita Mitchell home at 1324 Druid Hill Avenue, James Murphy and the Afro-American Newpaper founder at 1320 Druid Hill Ave, Harry S. Cummings Jr. at 1318 Druid Hill Avenue, Historic Bethel Ame Church. Way to go Paul Graziano!

  • Tracey

    The City offers the property for sale via its surplus sale last year. Don’t think it sold, but they are trying!

  • tiffaney jewel

    I do believe that if a property is on the register and it is allowed to fall in on itself by its owner, that is considered “demolition by neglect” and the owner can be sued or punished somehow. I’m not sure how that works when the city owns it, because the historic register is also a government entity.

    It doesn’t seem that ANYTHING will make the city care about the treasures it owns.

    • admin

      The only thing that will make the city care is if voters stop putting up with this kind of laziness on the part of our elected officials — both city and state.

  • Marlee

    1313 Druid Hill – This building is for sale and Baltimore Housing has been working with the community of Upton to identify possible, experienced and well-financed developers or organizations to bring it into productive use. Complaints are easy…working together to bring possible new use for this property is where the work is needed. Howard Tutman is the contact person for this property…410.396.4111

    • admin

      Thank you for your email. Just so you know, it was a resident of the neighborhood who asked me to post information on the property along with several others. What I do is far more than just “complaining”, I’m trying to also change policy in our city and state that has allowed the decline over the past 50 years, and to perhaps prevent it from happening again or getting worse.

  • Timbr

    The good news, I think this time a few bidders are considering residential units. I heard previous a group from the midwest wanted to open a halfway house years ago, I glad the neighborhood spoke against the original proposal. I’m not sure what changed from last year that it didn’t interest any developers. The state and current governor seems less probably to invest in the neighborhoods neighboring state center redevelopment.

    • admin

      A halfway house would be a shame, frankly.

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