1417 Thames St., 410/685-0295,
HOURS: Mon.–Fri. 10 a.m.–5 p.m., Sat.–Sun. 11 a.m.–6 p.m.
COST: $8 adult, $7 child, $7.50 senior
This mixture of old and new buildings was once home to the Chesapeake Marine Railway and Dry Dock Company, a business founded in 1868 by African Americans to provide shipwright services to the bustling port city of Baltimore . Frederick Douglass lived as a slave here in Fell’s Point, right near where Isaac Myers helped start the company. Douglass learned about shipwright work, which he said helped him fake his way to escape and freedom in 1838, and he was an inspiration to Myers.
Today, this building houses a variety of small exhibits about life for African Americans in Fell’s Point and the business Myers ran. Kids can try their hand at some of the jobs the workers here would have performed, including “caulking,” in which (now simulated) tar-soaked rope was pounded into the slots between boat hull planks to make it watertight. The park is part of the Living Classrooms Foundation, which works with at-risk city youth to provide positive learning environments that include maritime activities and history.