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Maryland's National Register Properties



Photo credit: U.S. Coast Guard Official Photo, 1944
U.S. Coast Guard Yard Curtis Bay
Inventory No.: AA-783
Date Listed: 8/5/1983
Location: Curtis Bay, Anne Arundel County
Category: District
Period/Date of Construction: 1899, 1930s and 1940s
Description: The U.S. Coast Guard Yard Curtis Bay is an industrial complex that occupies 115 acres surrounding Arundel Cove on the southeast shore of Curtis Creek, in northern Anne Arundel County. The Historic District is composed of 28 contributing resources and 13 non-contributing resources. The Yard is primarily a collection of utilitarian structures, metal and/or brick, that have been modified, expanded, or otherwise altered to meet changing demands of production and technology. While some of the yard’s architecture, particularly administrative buildings, make a distinct stylistic reference, efficiency and function, more than aesthetics, were the motivating factors in the design of most Yard buildings. Spatially, the Yard is arranged with buildings housing the administrative and support functions near the center of the Yard. This area features the largest expanses of green area and landscaping. Significance: The U.S. Coast Guard Yard is the largest modern industrial plant in the Coast Guard. The Yard has been building and servicing the vessels of the U.S. Coast Guard (and its predecessor, the Revenue Cutter Service) since 1899. The Yard is significant as a shipbuilding and repair facility that has continually operated from the end of the 19th century. The Yard is associated with changes and developments in the military shipbuilding industry. The Yard was established as the result of the Spanish American War, and experienced its most significant periods of expansion during the subsequent World Wars. This facility is therefore associated with trends in Naval preparedness. Furthermore, shipbuilding has traditionally been a key industry in the Southeast Baltimore area, and while the Yard did not play a particularly paramount role in the area economy, it was part of an important industry that defined the region. The Yard is also significant for its design and construction in that the historic resources at the Yard embody the distinctive characteristic of industrial and military/government buildings of the World War II period. The overwhelming majority of historic structures at the Yard date to the 1930s and 1940s. Taken as a district, the ensemble of Yard buildings represent a significant and distinguishable entity, although most components lack individual distinction. Furthermore, vestiges of pre-World War II building arrangement and usage patterns still remain.

 

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