Visitors from around the United States and world have been visiting the Washington Monument for over 200 years. Like other monumental structures it was thought to be a marvel, and experiencing the views from the top has long been a Baltimore must-see experience.
When built, the Monument was in “Howard’s Woods,” but over time the area around it was laid out into small gardens to form a residential “square,” and many of Baltimore’s wealthy citizens first built impressive mansions here in the 1830s-40s. The parks proper have been designed by greats in American architecture like the Olmsted firm, and the current design from 1917-20 by Carrère & Hastings.
Over time, some of the mansions were replaced by churches, places of learning, and museums, and a handful underwent major transformations during the Gilded Age. Today, it survives as an outstanding example of urban architectures, and a long-standing centerpiece of the cultural life of Baltimore.