BNHA Baltimore Hebrew Congregation

Interpretive Framework

Gaining Freedom for All: African American Heritage and the Struggle for Equality

Seeking Prosperity on the Chesapeake: Baltimore History from Colonial Times through the 1800s

Star Attractions

Historic Fell’s Point Trail

Resource Type

Points of Interest

1534 Fleet St

Baltimore, Maryland 21231

This building was the original home of Maryland’s first Jewish congregation. Chartered in 1830, the Baltimore Hebrew Congregation was also known as Nidchei Yisroel, or the “Scattered of Israel.” Its members, mostly German Jewish immigrants, met here in second-floor rented rooms above a grocery from 1830 to 1832. The congregation went on to build Maryland's first synagogue building on Lloyd Street in 1845 and continues to thrive today at its synagogue on Park Heights Avenue.

The building has also seen use as a private home, saloon, market, boarding house, auto parts store, and a stained-glass shop. The youngest son of Francis Hopkinson, signer of the Declaration of Independence, lived in the building for 15 years. In 2000, the Maryland Historic Trust sponsored an archaeological investigation that discovered thousands of household artifacts and a colonial-period hearth large enough to heat the entire household.

Site summary courtesy of the Preservation Society of Federal Hill and Fell’s Point