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Wednesday, August 13, 2014

The "A Visit To Inner Harbor, Baltimore, MD: The World Trade Center" Story

Foreward - My wife and I along with our two granddaughters made a recent trip to Baltimore's Inner Harbor for some sightseeing and enjoying a meal together.  Today and tomorrow will feature two events that filled our day with fun and enjoyment.

A piece of the New York World Trade Center.
It was an ordinary day.  Looking out of the windows on the 27th floor of Baltimore's World Trade Center that is located in the Inner Harbor area of Baltimore.  My granddaughter Courtney and Camille, along with my wife, made the ascent after arriving for a day of enjoyment at Baltimore's Inner Harbor.  
27th floor to the top.
My granddaughters had never been to the top of the World Trade Center so we decided to make it our first stop in order view the entire harbor as well as the city of Baltimore.  The first thing that attracted them was a piece of New York's World Trade Center after it was destroyed on 9/11/2001.  After reading about the tragedy and viewing a piece of the metal framework of the building, we entered Baltimore's center and paid our fees to travel to the top.  Within minutes the door opened and we stepped into the lobby of the 27th floor that gave us a 360 degree view of Baltimore.  We found Baltimore's baseball and football stadiums to the west as well as the old Memorial Stadium on 33rd Street to our north.  
The tip of the aquarium is seen on the left.
To the east was Baltimore's Aquarium while to the south was Federal Hill and Fort McHenry as well as the pier where cruise ships depart.  For over 300 years this port was a center of commerce and industry.  Merchants and shipbuilders of the 1700's made this port into an international trading location.  
The Phoenix Shot Tower
The port established Baltimore as a center for canning fruits, vegetables and oysters as well as  a garment center and petroleum refinery.  When the Civil War came along steam boats replaced sail boats and the harbor grew even more.  With the influx of industry and business, insurance companies, banks, investment houses and maritime suppliers were added to the harbor area.  The port was an entry point for many immigrants who searched for religious and political freedom.  It was once the second most popular entry point behind Ellis Island.  More than two million people entered our country through this area we are viewing today.  To our north-east was the Phoenix Shot Tower.  
View showing the Ripley's Believe It Or Not Building.
This tower was known as our nation's tallest structure for over 20 years after its completion in 1828.  It took less than six months, using more than one million bricks, to build the structure.  The most amazing part of that was it was done with no scaffolding.  
Courtney and Camille at the top of the World Trade Center.
The tall tower was part of a structure where gun shot was made by pouring molten lead through sieves down an open shaft in the tower.  As the lead spun and cooled, it gained it's circular and smooth form.  When it was in full operation it produced 12,500,000 pounds of gun shot a year.  
View of the Constellation tall sailing ship in the harbor.
At one time it was to be demolished, but it survived and is now on the national Register of historic Landmarks.  Then one of my grand- daughters pointed out our next stop which was the Ripley's Believe It Or Not Odditorium.  After a few photos we found our way to the elevator and hit the down button.  It was another extraordinary day in the life of an ordinary guy.

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