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Maryland Digital Cultural Heritage

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This selection from the Ferdinand C. Latrobe papers includes his hand-written speeches. Latrobe was an influential figure in Maryland politics, serving as Mayor of Baltimore seven times and as Speaker of the Maryland House of Delegates twice.

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Portrait engraving of Ferdinand C. LatrobeCollection Location: Albin O. Kuhn Library & Gallery, University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC)

Collection Overview: This selection from the Ferdinand C. Latrobe papers includes his hand-written speeches, with some composed during his terms as the Mayor of Baltimore City. The speeches discuss a wide-range of topics, pertinent to both local and national politics and events. Speeches discussing Latrobe's position on slavery, the Emancipation Proclamation, Abraham Lincoln, Andrew Jackson, and the Pure Foods Movement have a national scope; his speeches regarding the Maryland Board of State Aid and Charities, the Baltimore "Illumination" festival, Maryland history, and various aspects of Baltimore City civic and municipal improvements showcase Latrobe's participation and interest in many aspects of Baltimore politics and city life. Although some are incomplete or drafts, all of the speeches are written in Latrobe's hand; additional printed speeches are available in the Ferdinand C. Latrobe papers. This selection is drawn from Series I.9, Speeches; a full finding aid for the collection is available on UMBC's Special Collections website.

Ferdinand Claiborne Latrobe (1833-1911) was the son of Virginia Charlotte Clairborne and John H. B. Latrobe, an established Baltimore lawyer. He was the grandson of the famous architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe. Ferdinand C. Latrobe attended St. James College in Washington County, Maryland, and in 1858 served as the counsel for the B&O Railroad.  Latrobe is most well-known for his political service. Latrobe was first elected to the Maryland House of Delegates in 1868, representing a district in Baltimore City. He served as the Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee and authored the Act of 1868, a reorganization of the Maryland Militia. Latrobe served as the Speaker of the House in 1870 before returning to Baltimore, Maryland as the City's Mayor in 1875. Latrobe would go on to serve a total of seven terms as the Mayor of Baltimore: 1875-1877, 1878-1881, 1883-1885, 1887-1889, and 1891-1895. He returned to the House of Delegates in 1900-1901, again serving as Speaker of the House. In addition to his elected positions, Latrobe also served on the boards of the Maryland Board of State Aid and Charities, the Board of Park Commissioners, and several arts organizations.


Collection overview prepared by Lindsey Loeper, Special Collections Archivist, University of Maryland, Baltimore County.

 
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