Photo credit: Julie Darsie , 01/2001

Property Name: Bagby Furniture Company Building
Date Listed: 10/22/1998
Inventory No.: B-1011
Location: 509-521, Exeter St., S., Baltimore, Baltimore City

Description: The Bagby Furniture Company Building is a 4-story, U-shaped, brick factory building comprised of three sections constructed between 1902 and 1907. Its site occupies the northeast corner of Fleet and Exeter Streets in the Little Italy neighborhood of Baltimore. The Bagby Building has a shallow gable roof. Brick architectural detailing includes piers, segmental and jack arches above openings, a corbeled watertable, and a corbeled cornice. The building was modernized with new windows and 1st floor office space in 1950. Despite changes, the Bagby Furniture Company Building retains its early 20th century architectural character and possesses sufficient integrity to convey its historic associations.

Significance: The Bagby Furniture Company Building, constructed between 1902 and 1907, represents a locally significant component of Baltimore’s furniture industry. The Bagby Furniture Company, which operated from 1879 to 1990,embodied adaptive strategies that enabled a 19th century furniture manufacturing concern to evolve and continue in the furniture business through the 20th century. The building is significant for its association with the evolution of Baltimore’s furniture industry, and for its association with William Hugh Bagby, a major figure in the wholesale furniture business. The period of significance for the building is 1902 to 1947,t he year William Hugh Bagby was named "Man of the Decade" by the National Wholesale Furniture Association. Designed by English-born architect Alfred Mason, the four story Bagby Furniture Company Building retains sufficient integrity to convey its historic association, despite a 1962 concrete block addition and the loss of integrity of remaining minor structures on the site.