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Maryland's National Register Properties



Photo credit: Greg Pease, 02/2000
Guilford Historic District
Inventory No.: B-3654
Date Listed: 7/19/2001
Location: Baltimore, Baltimore City
Category: District
Period/Date of Construction: 1912-1950
Architect/Builder: Landscape architect: Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr.
Boundary Description: Roughly bounded by North Charles St., Warrenton Rd., Linkwood Rd., Cold Spring Ln., York Rd., Southway, University Parkway, and Bishops Rd.
Description: The Guilford Historic District is a planned residential subdivision of 210 acres in northeast Baltimore City bounded on the south by University Parkway, on the west by Charles Street, Warrenton, and Linkwood Roads, on the north by Cold Spring Lane, and on the east by York Road. The subdivision was carried out by the Roland Park Company, Baltimore’s premier developer of residential suburbs during the early 20th century. The property was acquired by the company in 1911; planning and infrastructure construction began shortly thereafter, and the first lots were sold in 1913; development was essentially complete by 1950. The landscape design was directed by Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr. The district comprises 849 primary contributing resources, predominantly detached residences in a variety of popular early 20th century revival styles. The style most widely used is the colonial prototype, but many are Tudor Revival in style, and others used English vernacular forms as inspiration as well as the residential work of the architects of the English Arts and Crafts movement. Renaissance Revival styles also appear throughout the district. Construction materials consisted of brick, stone, and stucco. Secondary structures include 481 contributing garages. There are two churches and one apartment building. The buildings represent the work of many of the most prominent architects in the city during the period. The district retains an exceptionally high degree of integrity. Significance: The Guilford Historic District is significant for its association with the suburbanization of Baltimore. It is a project of the Roland Park Company, which was responsible for several of Baltimore’s premier suburban developments beginning with Roland Park in the 1890s. The undertakings of the Roland Park Company are characterized by a comprehensive approach to all aspects of planning and construction, and an unfailingly high standard of quality in architecture and landscape design. The district derives additional significance as an example of a type of suburban development characteristic of the period. Laid out under the direction of Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr. the development reflects Olmstedian landscape design principles in its curvilinear streets and respect for existing topography and vegetation. The houses constructed within the development exemplify a variety of early 20th century revival styles, and exhibit a consistently high degree of quality in their design and construction.
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