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At exactly 5pm on New Year's Eve, 1938, Captain Leon Joyce took the ferry Howard Jackson across the harbor to the foot of Haubert Street in Locust Point for the very last time in the service's 114 years of existence. The service was costing the city $25,000 a year and Mayor Jackson had resolved to shut it down. And he did - which was probably the first of his New Year's resolutions that year that he kept.

The Great Baltimore World Series of Jump Rope, 1960 edition, was going to be different. In that year's contest, the boys were invited to compete along with the girls. The girls protested - they said it wasn't fair, what with the boys reputed to be stronger. But when the contest ended, there was a big surprise. Not a single boy finished in the running.

In the heart of the Great Depression, Baltimoreans looked to escape from its harsh realities by going to the movies, in particular the Century Theatre. There, an organist named Harvey Hammond, seated at the huge Wurlitzer organ, conducted sing-a-longs. The audience "followed the bouncing ball" on the silver screen, singing their cares away. But the sing-a-long came to an end and life in the real world began anew.

On Sunday morning, February 7, 1904, the great Baltimore fire swept through downtown. It turned everything in its path to ashes. The only way to stop the fire's continuing destruction, firemen concluded, was to knock down whatever lay in the fire's path--thus giving it nothing to burn. The strategy put Thomas O'Neill's department store in line to be destroyed, but the Irishman had other plans.

On the night of January 6, 1965, the great Count Basie gave a performance at the Royal Theatre on Pennsylvania Avenue, then the most popular movie and stage show theater serving the African American community. The audience cheered and clapped and danced in the aisles and when the show was over, drifted out onto the street. They knew they had just heard the end of another of the Royal's big band stage shows. They also heard the end of an era.

On the night of December 1, 1939, regulars of Baltimore's once-famous Rennert Hotel, then at Liberty and Saratoga streets, gathered at the bar to say goodbye to the old place. Among the group was H. L. Mencken. Though they had many fond memories of the Rennert, the farewell evening didn't work out quite the way the regulars had planned.

Baltimoreans in 1936, walking about downtown, could sense that there was something different about the city.

Biggest Crab Ever!!

Jan 24, 2014

Learn why the biggest crab ever caught in Maryland waters goes into the record book with an asterick and an explanation!

Moonlighters taking the moonlight excursions down The Bay got more moon than they figured on! 

Digital lifestyle expert Mario Armstrong, a technology commentator for NPR’s Morning Edition.