Perry Hall is located in Northeast Baltimore County. It is a
prominent community with many businesses. Its boundaries are often
confused with that of White Marsh because they share many things,
including White Marsh Mall. Even though it is named White Marsh Mall,
Perry Hall and White Marsh boundaries cut through the mall. Most people
know that Perry Hall is a old town. The town was established before it
was called Perry Hall. Perry Hall has had many names, Germantown being
one. The town was finally called Perry Hall in 1775 after Perry Hall
mansion, started by Corbin Lee and finished by Harry Dorsey Gough.
Gough named it after his home Staffordshire, England Perry Hall.
Perry Halls earliest records of settlement are the Susquehannock
Indians. The Susquehannock Indians settled near what was then called
Gunpowder River Valley; now called Gunpowder Falls State Park. In 1608,
Captain John Smith lead the first European exploration of Gunpowder River
Valley. In 1658, the first Europeans began to settle in the Gunpowder
River Valley. In 1669, Henry Howard acquired 200 acres of land, later
called Cullenbourne. In 1681, George Lingan purchased 1,000 acres of land
near Great Gunpowder Falls, which will become later the Perry Hall estate.
In 1697, one of the Indian sightings in Baltimore County was recorded,
when Charles Hewitt testified that Susquehannock Indians raided his home
in Perry Hall. (Marks, p.159)
During the time of 1700-1759 things began to fall into place in this
small town of what is now Perry Hall. Industries were starting, such as
forges, furnaces, and farms. In 1729, The Maryland General Assembly
created Baltimore Town, later becoming Baltimore County. In 1731, The
Baltimore Company opened the regions first iron furnace in Gwynns Falls.
In 1749, a flood swept through The Great Gunpowder Falls region and
destroys many buildings, including the Gunpowder Iron Works. Also in
1749, Nottingham Furnace was up and running. In 1752, a devastating fire
destroyed Nottingham Furnace. In 1754, Baltimore County Court granted
Selah Barton to operate a ferry over Long Calm at the Great Gunpowder
Falls. In 1757, the Nottingham Forge was opened on the Great Gunpowder
Falls. In 1759, Cullenbourne was sold to the Nottingham Company.
During the years of 1760-1850, Perry Hall was going through a
religious revolution, also the town was still going through its industrial
period. In 1760, Robert Strawbridge, a Methodist missionary, went to
northeastern Baltimore County and converted many slaves and backcountry
residents. In 1774, Harry Dorsey Gough purchased the 1,000 acres, once
owned by George Lingan, and renames it Perry Hall. In 1780, Nottingham
Furnace and Forge was confiscated as British Property. In 1784, the
Methodist church was formally organized and Francis Asbury was named
bishop. In 1807, Camp Meeting Chapel was built. In 1880, Harry Dorsey
Gough died, he was born in 1745. In 1812, the first cannon fires were
heard in Perry Hall during the British invasion of Baltimore. In 1814,
Gunpowder Copper Works was up and running, producing materials for the
U.S. Navy during the War of 1812. In 1817, the Joppa Iron Works is
operating. In 1824, fire destroyed the Perry Hall mansion. In 1832, fire
destroyed the Joppa Iron Works. In 1848, Camp Chapel closed until 1850.
During the time between 1850-1900, Perry Hall was called
Germantown. This was when German and Irish immigrants settled in Perry
Hall, also when new religions were introduced to the people of Perry Hall.
In 1850, Catholics began to congregate at the Krastel farmhouse, this
represent the start of St. Josephs Roman Catholic Church. The year 1852
was the turning point in local history, when Harry Dorsey Gough Carroll,
Harry Dorsey Goughs grandson, sold the Perry Hall estate to Eli Slifer and
William Meredith. They divided the estate between new European
immigrants. In 1858, the dam at Long Calm due to flooding and destroys
Gunpowder Furnace. In 1859, Lutherans begin organizing St. Michael
Lutheran Church. In 1866, Baltimore City purchased the Gunpowder Copper
Works. In 1874, Baltimore Countys commissioners approve the first public
school in Germantown. In 1876, the Akehurst family began Perry Halls
first nursery. In 1877, George Penn became Germantowns first postmaster.
In 1878, local residents organized Germantown Building and Loan. A
second Perry Hall School opens in 1890. In 1895, residents formed the
Perry Hall Permanent Building and Loan Association. (Marks,p.160-161)
During the early part of the Twentieth Century, 1900-1945, Perry Hall
was undergoing several technological changes. In 1914, the Baltimore
Embroidery Company began production. In 1915, MacMahon Brothers starts
a bus service that runs through Perry Hall. Many Perry Hall farmers are
forced into the service in 1918, when America becomes involved. In 1925,
the Crystal Palace opens. In 1932, the Berg dairy opens. In 1933, there
was a mysterious fire destroying the Crystal Palace. In 1941, World War II
forces at least 215 Perry Hall residents to enlist in the military, only 4 out
of 215 deaths were reported. (Marks,p.161)
During 1945-1980 Perry Hall was going through a postwar growth. In
1946, the Kingsville-Perry Hall Rotary Club was chartered to Fork Christian
Church. In 1949, the Perry Hall Improvement Association (PHIA) starts its
annual Halloween parade. In 1953, the Kingsville-Perry Hall Lions Club is
chartered to Kingsville Inn. In 1954, Baltimore Countys commissioners
extended sewerage to most of Perry Hall. In 1956, Perry Hall Elementary
School opens, also Perry Hall Medical Group open a professional center. In
1961, Perry Halls first shopping center opens. In 1962, Chapel Hill
Elementary School opens. In 1963, Perry Hall Senior High School opens,
also community leaders dedicate the Perry Hall Library. In 1968, fire
destroys Perry Halls A&P grocery store. In 1969, construction on Perry
Halls first apartment complex, Chapel Manor, began. Gunpowder
Elementary School opens and a mysterious fire destroys part of Berg dairy
in 1970. In 1971, Hurricane Agnes causes White Marsh Run to flood.
Since 1980 Perry Hall has been about becoming more modernized. In
1981, White Marsh Mall was opened, it was one of the largest malls on
the East Coast. In 1983, fire destroyed the original Camp Chapel Methodist
Church. In 1984, Waldmans Seven-Mile House to build a office building
and townhouses. In 1986, White Marsh Health Center and White Marsh
Business Center were opened. In 1987, the White Marsh public library and
police station opened, also Perry Hall Merchant Association began. In 1989,
Nottingham branch of the U.S. Postal Service opened. In 1990, Joppa View
Elementary School opened, also five movie theaters were opened in Perry
Hall Square Shopping Center and Republicans made gains in local elections.
In 1997, the Perry Hall Business and Professional Association (PHBPA)
held the first town fair and a new town logo was unveiled there. In 1999,
the Perry Hall mansion and Camp Chapel Church were declared historical
landmarks and in 2000 Perry Hall celebrated its 225th anniversary as a
named community. (Marks,p.162-163)
The 1996 population estimates (000s) for the Perry Hall/White Marsh
area was 50.2 (BC by the Numbers: A Demographic Study of BC-
1998-1999,p.63). Perry Halls calculated population in 1990 was 22,723:
males- 10,973, females- 11,750. The racial composition is: White- 21,149
(93.1%), Black- 592 (2.6%), American Indian- 9 (0.0%), Asian/Pacific- 941
(4.1%), Other- 32 (0.1%), and Hispanic- 294 (1.3%). The age composition
is: 0 to 4- 2,013, 5 to 17- 3,701, 18 to 20- 652, 21 to 24- 1,064, 25 to
44- 9,277, 45 to 54- 2,113, 55 to 59- 855, 60 to 64- 963, 65 to 74-
1,458, 75 to 84- 532, and 85+- 95. (Health Profile & Select Demographics
for BC, MD,p.54)
CHURCHES & SCHOOLS
Perry Halls religious ancestry is Methodist. It was at Perry Hall
Mansion that plans for the Methodist Church of America were developed
by Francis Asbury, Harry Dorsey Gough, and a handful of early Methodist
leaders. These pioneers helped start Camp Chapel Church, which was
followed by Perry Hall United Methodist Church in 1866. Methodism was
the main religion in Perry Hall until 1850, when many German and Irish
families settled here. They brought with them the religions of Roman
Catholicism and Lutheranism. Between 1850 and 1870, three new churches
were built in Perry Hall. (Marks,online)
St. Josephs Roman Catholic Church began in 1850. The first services
were held in the Krasten farmhouse near Fullerton. When this became too
small, the growing parish moved to a new location and this site was used
until 1971, when the current building was completed. Germantown Lutheran
Church, or known now as St. Michaels Lutheran Church, began March 7,
1859. Perry Hall Presbyterian Church, organized in 1856, was an outreach
effort for Hamilton Presbyterian Church. By Easter Sunday, 1957, a
three-car garage next to the Manse had been renovated into Fellowship
This was used until 1966, when the present sanctuary was dedicated.
Perry Halls first Baptist congregation was organized in 1957. Ground was
broken in 1960 for Perry Hall Baptist Church. These are Perry Halls largest
organized churches. Local churches are united under the Perry Hall
Perry Hall now has five elementary schools, a middle school, and a
high school. Chapel Hill Elementary School was built in 1962, Gunpowder
Elementary School opened in 1970, Seven Oaks and Joppa View
Elementary Schools were first used in the 1990 school year, and Perry Hall
Elementary School opened in 1956. Perry Hall Middle School is on what
used to be Perry Hall Senior High School. Perry Hall Senior High School
opened in 1963, it has been operating at its present location since 1967.
For many years, Perry Hall was one of the few communities where its
three public schools were located on the same street. (Marks,online)
As presently defined, Perry Hall includes that region of northeastern
Baltimore County bordered by the Great Gunpowder Falls on the north,
Philadelphia Road on the east, White Marsh Run on the south, and the
Baltimore Gas and Electric transmission lines on the west. Immediately west
of Perry Hall is Carney, named for Thomas and Mary McDermot Carney.
To the north of Perry Hall, just across the Gunpowder River, are the rural,
rolling hills of Glen Arm and Baldwin. East of Perry Hall is Kingsville,
named for Abraham King. To the south is White Marsh, which takes its
name from the White Marsh Plantation established by Captain Charles
Ridgely in 1659. (Marks,online)
Perry Hall went from a town with dirt roads and wooden, shack
farmhouses to one of the most prominent towns in Baltimore County. They
went from paying $200 for a tract of land to paying $150,327 for a three
bedroom, single home. Perry Hall is a historical town but since the
beginning they have done nothing but modernize. They demolished
Waldmans Seven-Mile House to make way for townhouses and Bishops
Inn for a Kentucky Fried Chicken.
The health of Baltimore county is better than Baltimore City. Every
week in Baltimore County 80 people are diagnosed with cancer, 39 people
die from heart disease, 14 mothers give birth to a low birth weight baby, 1
person is diagnosed with AIDS, and 1 person is diagnosed with syphilis.
Most people in Baltimore County are overweight: 34% of females and 42%
of males. Between 1997-1998 5 girls between the ages of 15-17 gave birth.
Perry Hall is policed by the 9th Precinct. To date this year no
homicides have been reported. The thing that people have to worry about
is burglary and theft. This year 189 cases of burglary and 566 cases of
theft have been reported. Perry Hall isnt a bad town but you are going to
have crime wherever you go. (Crime Stats by Community, online)
PLACES OF INTEREST
There are many places of interest in Perry Hall. Two would be White
Marsh Mall and The Avenue at White Marsh. They are places to
hang-out with friends, go shopping, watch a movie, or get something to
eat. Two more places of interest are Perring Plaza, many people go there
for the Wendys, and Perry Hall Square Shopping Center, many people go
there for the tennis shoe warehouse.
Perry Hall is a prominent town filled with housing projects and
businesses. To live in Perry Hall means that you have some sort of money.
Perry Hall has a long history which in turn gives them many historical
buildings. The health and crime factors in Perry Hall are good numbers
compared to Baltimore City. Compared to Baltimore City the population is
Crime Stas by Community. Online. 08-08-2000.
Hoffmeister, Anna E. Perry Hall. Villages of Northeast Baltimore County. Perry
Hall: Baltimore County Savings Bank, 1989.
Kaminkow, Marion J. Perry Hall. Maryland A to Z. Baltimore: Magna Carta
Book Co., 1985.
Marks, David. Crossroads: The History of Perry Hall, MD. Baltimore: Gateway
Press, Inc., 1999
Marks, David. Baltimore County Public Library Website. Online. 08-07-2000
Maryland State. Baltimore County Public Schools. School Directory 1998-1999.
Towson:State of Maryland, 1998.
Maryland State. Baltimore County Department of Health. Health Profile & Select
Demographics for Baltimore County, Maryland. Baltimore: State of
Maryland State. Baltimore County Chamber of Commerce. Baltimore County by
the Numbers: A Demographic Study of Baltimore County- 1998-1999.
Towson: State of Maryland, 1999.
Maryland State. Baltimore County Department of Health. Health Profile Update.
Baltimore: State of Maryland, 1999.
McGrain, John W. Perry Hall. A Glossary of Place Names in Baltimore County.
Towson: Baltimore County Office of Planning, June 1999.