Latrobe Park

1529 Fort Avenue, Baltimore, Md 21230

Latrobe Park is a neighborhood treasure in Locust Point. Originally only six acres in size, this park was created to serve the working class families on the Locust Point peninsula in addition to those on the trolley lines that ran along Fort Avenue. Unlike plans for much larger parks like Patterson Park and Clifton Park- what distinguishes Latrobe Park was the amount of active recreation that had to be accommodated in a tight space.

The park is named for Mayor Ferdinand I. Latrobe of Baltimore’s distinguished Latrobe family. The City acquired the Locust Point site in 1902 during the Thomas G. Hayes Administration, 1899 to 1903. The City accepted both the Children’s Playground Association’s offer to operate programs at that location and the Public Park Athletic Association’s proposed donation of a gym apparatus. In 1904, the Board of Park Commissioners retained the Olmsted Brothers firm to provide a plan that would accommodate these activities, as well as fulfill the public’s request for a playing field.

By the following year in 1905, Latrobe Park was under construction and much of what the Olmsted Brothers firm described was built. Latrobe Park’s design is as much as reflection of Olmsted aesthetics as it is a commentary on the social concerns of the period. In 1900, there was a fundamental shift in the concept of the appropriate use of city parks.

The sensibility that guided earlier park development was that parks inspired and educated through the beauties of nature. A new philosophy took hold at the turn of the century that promoted active recreation as a means to physical, mental, moral and social health. In addition, children became a distinct and important focus of park planning with the advent of the playground movement in the late 19th century.

Today, a berm constructed for the I-95 Fort McHenry Tunnel obscures the view of the water in the middle branch of the Patapsco River, but one can see the tall shipping cranes of the marine terminal. Over the years, the park has seen additional changes. Adjacent land was added on the western edge along the railroad tracks for tennis courts and a baseball field. The original running track and wading pool were grassed over, and many of the early trees were replaced.

Today Latrobe Park has a turf athletic field, a large gated playground and toddler area with rubberized flooring, basketball courts, illuminated tennis courts, a dog park, and a Recreation Center. It is an easy walk from anywhere in the Locust Point neighborhood.


In Proximity To…

****Fun Fact- Banner Field is named for the “Star Spangled Banner”.