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Annapolis Maryland Blog Photographs • Streetscape on Main with Combined c1790 Buildings that Today is the Helly Hansen Store • Tuesday August 30th 2016

Goods, Bakery, Groceries, Toys, & Outwear Since 1790

Summer Streetscape on Lower Main Including Helly Hansen and Kiilwins in Annapolis Maryland August 30th 2016

Click on Photograph to Enlarge

Publisher’s Note: This photo journal entry features the third period building or house to be included in the 18th Century Architecture of Annapolis Series. In the future as weather conditions, natural lighting and an absence of location clutter permits additional buildings and houses from the 1700s will be posted as well. The goal in assembling this annotated collection of my photographs and curated content related to these 18th century structures is to present each of the 90 or so 1700’s historical buildings found in the City of Annapolis today. Each of the previously posted entries in this collection are available here.

I opted to return to Main Street so soon after my recent Sunday morning walk which is when I had noticed how the sapling or young tree on the sidewalk, seen along the far right side of the Helly Hansen storefront, had already lost about half its leaves. For years I have made a mental note to take a photograph of this particular tree’s early loss of foliage but never have, at least until now. As an aside this particular tree always seems to have dropped its leaves by the first week of September ever since it was planted. So in effect the tree is totally devoid of leaves, for reasons that are unknown to me, weeks before Autumn officially begins.

In any event today’s return visit, or morning walk if you would, to lower Main Street also afforded me an opportunity to feature yet another 1700’s building found along this centuries old Annapolis commercial street.

The Helly Hansen Store in a c1790 Building at 132 Main Street in Annapolis Maryland Just After Sunrise August 30th 2016

Click on Photograph to Enlarge

So for a bit of architectural historic background on today’s Helly Hansen building let me begin by saying that it is actually made up of two structures dating back to the 1790’s. In the early 1780’s the lot on which Helly Hansen is located today was purchased by a Mr. Joseph Dowson. Mr. Dowson would operate a store on his then recently acquired property, that itself was believed to have been located along the right side street front of the lot, that was perhaps only half the size of today’s Main Street building.

During the late 1780’s a Mr. William Wilkins leased Mr. Dowson’s lot and existing building while according to a Maryland Gazette article of June 1791 he also constructed a brick house on the property as well. Mr. Wilkins would go on to purchase both the lot and buildings, that today are formally known as 132 Main Street, in 1796 from the administrators of Mr. Dowson’s holdings. Tax records from 1798 indicate that Mr. Wilkins was assessed for a brick house 38′ wide as well as a brick kitchen that itself was 32′ wide. Perhaps coincidental their combined widths are 70′, basically the width of today’s Helly Hansen storefront.

Years later in 1863 the then combined buildings were occupied by a German immigrant by the name of Mr. Martin Smith. Mr. Smith operated a bakery and store located within the left section of the current Main Street building. It was perhaps during Mr. Smith’s occupancy that a brick extension was added to the back of the lot. Mr. Smith and his family, along with a group of German boarders employed at the bakery, resided on the building’s second floor. In 1920 a Mr. Kasper Mayerhofer purchased the location, although it is believed that until the late 1920’s a bakery continued to operate on the ground level of the building with rental apartments occupying the second floor.

In 1924 the building was sold to a Mr. Harry Elliot who went on to lease the building’s ground floor to the American Stores Company in the late 1920’s for use as a retail grocery store. A Mr. Samuel Lerner purchased the building in 1945 and signed the Capital Fruit and Produce Company to a lease for part of the ground floor as the grocery store remained at the location. During this period the building featured three second story residential rental units.

The mid 1950’s saw Hack’s Toys and Games operate out of the building while the second floor continued to be used for rental apartments. After Mr. Lerner’s passing in 1985 the building remained in the Lerner family where the Nature Company served as the location’s business tenant. Where of course today Helly Hansen operates a store in this late 18th century building.

Certainly numerous merchants and businesses have occupied this building since 1790. As I suggested this past Sunday how many visitors, or locals for that matter, realize that this has been the case for well over two hundred years?

Have a very pleasant day everyone,

Glenn

This Blog is Copyright © 2016 Annapolis Experience
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2 comments to Annapolis Maryland Blog Photographs • Streetscape on Main with Combined c1790 Buildings that Today is the Helly Hansen Store • Tuesday August 30th 2016

  • Debra Rysdyk

    My Grandfather, Casper Mayerhofer owned a bakery here in 1920. My mom and aunts were raised here living in the apartments above. I would love to find photos of the bakery. Any ideas where I can locate them? Thank you for your article

    • anpbaystate

      Debra, thank you for your posted comment and inquiry. At this time I do not know as to where you might be able to find any photographs of the old bakery however I will keep your interest in it in mind during my future research. Regards, Glenn

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