March 22, 2019

Preservation Personals: A Baltimore Beer Baron's Chesapeake Castle

  • By: Emma Sarappo
The exterior of the Bauernschmidt mansion in Essex, Maryland.

photo by: Gary Gestson

Essex, Maryland 21221.

If you’re curious, that bold, blue "B" above my front balcony stands for Bauernschmidt. But I suppose it could also stand for Baltimore—or beer.

I was the opulent summer home of noted Baltimore brewer Frederick Bauernschmidt, the son of another of Baltimore’s beer barons, George Bauernschmidt. In my heyday, I stood proudly on 44 acres, and his tired Belgian horses rested on my grounds after pulling wagons full of beer barrels around the city.

Those 44 acres are now occupied by the other lovely homes that make up my neighborhood on the Chesapeake shores, but my lot is still three-quarters of one. Although I’m less lonely than before, my Italianate details can’t be outdone, and I remain the street and neighborhood’s namesake.

Bauernschmidt acquired the property in 1904 and I was built around 1909. Rumor has it that my foundation is full of bricks scavenged after the Great Baltimore Fire of 1904! That’s just one aspect of my distinguished pedigree: I am a late example of Victorian-era Italianate detail, if you couldn’t tell from the classic square, hip-roofed cupola peeking above my roof line. My 14 rooms mean you’ll have plenty of space to live and entertain, and my 58 windows and their large panes let plenty of light in.

Although my gravitas comes from my storied past, I’ve aged gracefully. Previous owners began restoring me in 1980, and in 2003, the current owners finished the work. If you’re not convinced, my updated kitchen with shiny new countertops and modern appliances should win you over.

If you’re ready to make a toast to your new home, see my listing here. Looking for something less bubbly? Check out our other historic real estate listings.

The updated kitchen inside the Bauernschmidt house.

photo by: Gary Gestson

My kitchen's surfaces and appliances were updated when the rest of me was redone.

One of the 14 rooms in the Bauernschmidt manor.

photo by: Gary Gestson

Many of my most captivating interior details remain intact.

Emma Sarappo is a former Editorial Intern at the National Trust. She can be found writing or in the kitchen of her century-old DC rowhouse.

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