North Central Railroad, Baltimore Freight House, Guilford & Centre Streets, Baltimore, Independent City, MD
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Guilford & Centre Streets, Baltimore, MD
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Documentation compiled after 1968.
Survey number HAER MD-38
Significance: The Baltimore Freight Shed, built by the Northern Central Railroad, is a rare example of composite timber and iron roof construction of the mid 19th century. The roof structure is comprised of a series of tricomposite trusses with timber top chords, wrought iron tension rods and cast iron compression members. This use of both timber and iron in the same roofing system formed a transition period between short span timber trusses and longer span iron and steel trusses that would be in widespread use by the end of the century.
Williams, J. H.
Historic American Engineering Record (Library of Congress)
1. SOUTH END OF CALVERT STATION. FREIGHT HOUSE IS GABLED STRUCTURE ON RIGHT. FIRST FLOOR FACADE ADDED IN 1946 WHEN THE PASSENGER TERMINAL SOUTH OF CENTRE STREET WAS DEMOLISHED AND ALL IT ACTIVITIES WERE TRANSFERRED TO THE FREIGHT SHED.
2. VIEW NORTH ALONG HUNTER ST., SHOWING ADDITIONS TO THE FREIGHT SHED MADE IN 1946.
3. GENERAL VIEW OF 1946 ADDITIONS. WHEN THE FREIGHT SHED WAS CONVERTED TO PASSENGER USE THESE STRUCTURES WERE BUILT TO MOVE FREIGHT FROM THE SHED TO TRUCKS PARKED AT THESE LOADING DOCKS.
4. LOOKING SOUTH ALONG HUNTER STREET FROM MONUMENT ST. C. 1860 FREIGHT SHED IS GABLED STRUCTURE ON LEFT. SHED'S ENTRANCE HAS BEEN WIDENED BY REMOVING THE ARCH OPENING ON THE EAST END AND EXTENDING THE CENTRAL BAY.
5. LOOKING SOUTH ON GUILFORD ST. SHOWING THE EAST SIDE OF THE C. 1860 FREIGHT SHED.
6. INTERIOR VIEW LOOKING TOWARD SOUTH END OF FREIGHT SHED. STRUCTURES VISIBLE AT END OF PLATFORM ARE PART OF 1946 ALTERATION TO ACCOMADATE PASSENGER TRAFFIC. ARCHWAYS ON RIGHT LEAD TO LOADING DOCKS ALSO BUILT IN 1946.
7. VIEW OF TRICOMPOSITE ROOF STRUCTURE. TOP CHORDS ARE TIMBER. TENSION RODS (THIN METAL RODS EXTENDING DIAGONALLY FROM THE HORIZONTAL TIMBER BRACE) ARE WROUGHT IRON. SOLID CRUCIFORM SHAPED COMPRESSION MEMBERS EXTENDING DOWNWARD FROM THE TIMBER TOP CHORD ARE MADE OF CAST IRON
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