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Maryland's National Register Properties

Photo credit: Paula S. Reed, 04/1989
Hagerstown City Park Historic District
Inventory No.: WA-HAG-156
Date Listed: 7/5/1990
Location: Hagerstown, Washington County
Category: District
Period/Date of Construction: 1890-1941
Architect/Builder: Landscape Architect: George Burnap
Description: The Hagerstown City Park Historic District consists of the park with its natural and man-made features and the surrounding industrial area and residential neighborhoods. It consists largely of a late 19th and early 20th century residential area with most houses dating from 1890-1930. A middle class area, the residences are both single family and duplexes with a few apartment buildings as well. Major architectural styles represented are Queen Anne, Colonial Revival, Foursquare, Tudor Revival, Spanish Colonial Revival, and Bungalow. Exceptions to these basic architectural expressions are the 18th century Jonathan Hager House, a Germanic farmhouse, and the Mansion House in city park which dates from 1843-46 and reflects the Greek Revival style. Other significant architectural elements are the remaining industrial buildings between the Norfolk and Western Railroad and Key Street. These circa 1890-1900 brick buildings provided the economic basis for the nearby residential area east and south of the park. Significance: The Hagerstown City Park Historic District is significant for its association with an important period in Hagerstown's history and for the architectural character of the district. The district developed in response to a period of unprecedented industrial and commercial growth. By 1914 Hagerstown emerged as the second manufacturing city in Maryland in terms of value of product. The city's population more than quadrupled between 1880 and 1930. During this period of boom, which began about 1890 and continued through the 1920s, numerous additions were made to the town including posh Oak Hill on the north and various working class developments. The industrial buildings in the district further represent the city's industrial growth but also have a direct historical link with the residential section. Many of the residents of the district over time were employed by the industries occupying these buildings. Architecturally, the district buildings include excellent examples of the major architectural styles popular in Hagerstown during the period of significance and collectively exhibit a range of architectural expressions, craftsmanship, and technique of the period. From the point of community planning and development, the park, from which the name of the district is derived, represents an important effort on the part of the city government to enhance the community's quality of life. Designed by George Burnap, a landscape architect from Washington, D.C., the park results from the ambitious conversion of a privately owned marshy area historically used for recreation purposes into a formally designed public urban amenity characterized by a lake with lagoons and islands, picnic and play areas, gardens, and an art museum. City Park is the largest city park and the only one given such formal design.
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