If you’re headed out to AOTA 2014 at the beginning of April, you may find yourself with some free time between educational sessions and the exhibit hall hours. Here are some of the wonderful things you’ll find in the historic city of Baltimore, Maryland.
American Visionary Art Museum
A museum dedicated to exhibiting remarkable outsider art, the AVAM hosts slightly off-center sculptures and paintings created by self-taught visionaries. Many of these eclectic pieces overpoweringly communicate their creators unique visions. Pieces range from matchstick ocean liners and tinfoil altars, to the whimsical, wonderful and the downright weird.
National Cryptologic Museum
Maryland is also home to the National Cryptologic Museum. Associated with the NSA, this museum presents a comprehensive history of intelligence work in the US. Originally designed to house artifacts from the Agency and to give employees a place to reflect on past successes and failures, the Museum quickly developed into a priceless collection of the Nation’s cryptologic history.
National Museum of Health and Medicine
The National Museum of Health and Medicine was established during the Civil War as the Army Medical Museum, a center for the collection of specimens for research in military medicine and surgery. The museum hosts a collection of fascinating exhibits and artifacts related to Abraham Lincoln and his assassination by John Wilkes Booth.
Edgar Allan Poe’s Grave
Fascinated by strange and spooky places? Visit Poe and his wife, Virginia Clemm, in the Westminster Hall cemetery and keep a look out for the gravestones of some other prominent Maryland citizens. The cemetery is located at 519 West Fayette, on the corner of Fayette and Greene.
Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary was the first metropolitan cathedral in the United States. This historic site contains neoclassical architecture, a 17th-century organ, stunning artwork and more. The Basilica is also one of Baltimores beloved cultural institutions, offering educational tours daily, as well as hosting uplifting concerts and informative lectures.
The Cylburn Arboretum
The Cylburn Arboretum is a city park and nature preserve that spans approximately 207 acres where you will experience the feel of a grand estate in a rolling countryside, all within city limits. The park boasts expansive arboreal collections including Japanese maples, hollies, conifers, Maryland oaks, tree peonies, maples and magnolias stand on vibrant green lawns and colorful gardens that surround an elegant Victorian mansion.
Civil War Museum
Step back in time at one of the nations oldest surviving big-city railroad terminals. President Street Station, once an important rail connection during the Civil War, now houses the Civil War Museum and its permanent exhibition focused on Baltimore during the Civil War. The museum also features exhibits focused on Marylands railroad history and President Street Stations own role in the transportation of slaves escaping to the north.
Davidge Hall at the University of Maryland Medical Center
Davidge Hall, constructed in 1812, is named for the first dean of the University of Maryland School of Medicine, Dr. John B. Davidge. Noted for its unique classical appearance, it is the oldest building in the country used continuously for medical education. The Medical School, established in 1807 by the Maryland General Assembly was the fifth to be founded in the United States. Following mergers with Baltimore Medical College, 1913, and College of Physicians and Surgeons, 1915, the school became part of the State University System in 1920.
Patterson Park Pagoda
While known as the Pagoda because of its oriental architectural appearance, the design was intended to reflect the bold Victorian style of the day. From the top of the tower one can view downtown, Baltimores many neighborhoods, the Patapsco River, the Key Bridge and Fort McHenry. It was designed as a peoples lookout tower. Today you can climb to its full 60 feet and have a view of the Inner Harbor and surrounding neighborhoods.
The Walters Art Museum
Ranking as the #1 must see attraction at Trip Advisor, the Walters Art Museum is home to a collection that presents an overview of world art from pre-dynastic Egypt to 20th-century Europe, and counts among its many treasures Greek sculpture and Roman sarcophagi; medieval ivories and Old Master paintings; Art Nouveau jewelry and 19th-century European and American masterpieces.