A tour guide to places in the city that are important to labor, African Americans, and women's history
The Baltimore Book
New Views of Local History
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edited by Elizabeth Fee, Linda Shopes and Linda Zeidman
Baltimore has a long, colorful history that traditionally has been focused on famous men, social elites, and patriotic events. The Baltimore Book is both a history of "the other Baltimore" and a tour guide to places in the city that are important to labor, African American, and women's history. The book grew out of a popular local bus tour conducted by public historians, the People's History Tour of Baltimore, that began in 1982. This book records and adds sites to that tour; provides maps, photographs, and contemporary documents; and includes interviews with some of the uncelebrated people whose experiences as Baltimoreans reflect more about the city than Francis Scott Key ever did.
The tour begins at the B&O Railroad Station at Camden Yards, site of the railroad strike of 1877, moves on to Hampden-Woodbury, the mid-19th century cotton textile industry's company town, and stops on the way to visit Evergreen House and to hear the narratives of ex-slaves. We travel to Old West Baltimore, the late 19th-century center of commerce and culture for the African American community; Fells Point; Sparrows Point; the suburbs; Federal Hill; and Baltimore's "renaissance" at Harborplace. Interviews with community activists, civil rights workers, Catholic Workers, and labor union organizers bring color and passion to this historical tour. Specific labor struggles, class and race relations, and the contributions of women to Baltimore's development are emphasized at each stop.
"The Baltimore Book tells the story of the real people of Baltimorethe true fabric of the city. These are the courageous individuals who fought for their right to work, and fought for their right to buy a home and live where they chose. Their goals and their struggle to achieve those goals is the real story of how a city grows."
"...'must' reading for anyone who wishes to develop a comprehensive view of the city's history in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries...."
"The Baltimore Book provides a graphic, at times chilling, portrait of working and living conditions for generations of poor and working-class Baltimoreans."
"A refreshing, user-friendly, populists' history, this new book chronicles the history of the city through the eyes and emotions of its working classes."
Introduction: Toward a New History of Baltimore
Interviews with Former Slaves: Caroline Hammond and Richard Macks
Elizabeth Fee is Professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management of The Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health.
Linda Shopes is Associate Historian at the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.
Linda Zeidman is Professor of History and Economics at Essex Community College.
Contributors: Sylvia Gillett, Bill Harvey, Karen Olson, JoAnn E. Argersinger, Roderick Ryon, Eric Hallengren, W. Edward Orser, David Harvey, and the editors.
In the series
Critical Perspectives on the Past, edited by Susan Porter Benson, Stephen Brier, and Roy Rosenzweig, is concerned with the traditional and nontraditional ways in which historical ideas are formed. In its attentiveness to issues of race, class, and gender and to the role of human agency in shaping events, the series is as critical of traditional historical method as content. Emphasizing that history is itself an interpretation of material events, the series demonstrates that the historian's choices of subject, narrative technique, and documentation are politically as well as intellectually constructed.