Stereoview of the Eutaw House by William M. Chase

William M. Chase published this stereoview of the Eutaw House, a large and fashionable hotel built on the northwest corner of Eutaw and Baltimore streets between 1832 and 1835 by William Hussey.

According to Scharf’s History of Baltimore City and County, the brick Eutaw House covered over 19,000 square feet. The architect was Samuel Harris; the builders John and Valentine Dushane. Robert Garrett & Sons acquired the hotel at auction in 1845 for $58,500, excluding furnishings.

Carleton Jones wrote in his 1982 book Lost Baltimore Landmarks that the Eutaw House was “the great rival in its day of Barnum’s City Hotel.” The 1866  travel guide A Stranger in Baltimore told sojourners the Eutaw was “celebrated as one of the best hotels in the country.”

The drawing that appears in this advertisement for the hotel in Howard’s 1873 The Monumental City depicts the structure with two cupolas and several broad, low-pitched decorative gables facing both Eutaw and Baltimore streets instead of the small Federal-style garret windows seen in this stereoview. Were these decorative gables  a product of a post-bellum face-lift?

An advertisement for William E. Wood & Company, purveyors of stoves and heaters, appears in the same volume.

The publication history of The Monumental City creates complications for dating the photograph. The edition digitized for Google Books has an 1873 date of publication, but an 1878 copyright notice. The advertisement for the Eutaw House gives the manager’s name as C. S. Wood. According to Scharf’s 1881 History, also on Google Books, Wood took on the management of the hotel in 1880.

Google’s Monumental City is a digital version of a copy held by the Bodleian Library. B & O Railroad President, banker and philanthropist John Work Garrett inscribed this copy to an English M.P., John Pender, Esq. Pender was a member of Parliament 1862-1866, 1872-1885, and 1892-1896; Garrett died in 1884. A city booster, Garrett apparently used the book to promote Baltimore. Howard’s volume may have gone through multiple unrecorded printings, but this copy had to have been produced ca. 1880.

The presence of horse-drawn omnibuses indicates the photograph was taken before 1890, when electric trolleys replaced the horse-cars; following William Darrah’s dating, the yellow, flat mount suggests  this stereoview was published between 1862 and 1876.

Do you know additional details about either the date of publication of this stereoview or the date of the exterior alteration of Eutaw House? If so, leave a comment.

1 Comment

  1. Terry says:

    Thank you!

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