Videos: Baltimore FFs battle fire in abandoned historic mansion
No firefighters were injured while fighting a three-alarm fire at the Uplands Mansion
By Dillon Mullan
BALTIMORE — A historic mansion in West Baltimore caught fire Monday night.
Firefighters responded to the 5000 block of Old Frederick Road around 5:30 p.m. and found the vacant Uplands Mansion engulfed in flames intensified by high winds, the Baltimore City Fire Department said.
No firefighters were injured, and the cause of the fire is under investigation, spokesperson Kevin Cartwright said at 8:15 p.m., as crews battled the three-alarm fire.
The mansion, built in 1850 in what is now the Uplands neighborhood, was a summer home for Mary Frick Garrett Jacobs, one of Baltimore’s premier socialites of the 19th and early 20th centuries. She married Robert Garrett, president of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, in 1872 and later Dr. Henry Barton Jacobs, the physician who had attended to Garrett before he died. The home once sat on 181 acres.
Her main residence, the 40-room Garrett-Jacobs House in the Mount Vernon neighborhood, now houses the Engineering Society of Baltimore, which calls itself the city’s oldest private social club. Jacobs donated a large private art collection to the Baltimore Museum of Art when she died in 1936.
The Uplands Mansion is not listed as a landmark by the city’s Commission for Historical and Architectural Preservation. Jacobs left the home and 19.3 acres to the Episcopal Diocese, which operated a retirement home there from 1952 until 1984. The Episcopal Diocese then sold the property to the New Psalmist Baptist Church. In 2004, the Baltimore City bought the property and constructed housing around the mansion.
Nearby in the adjacent Ten Hills neighborhood, the Gundry/Glass Hospital, a historic stone mansion on a 65-acre plot built as a home and later transformed into a psychiatric hospital for children, caught fire and was torn down in 2021.