History & Tours
Friends of Stony Run is developing guided tours to explore the historical and ecological significance of the area. Check the calendar for upcoming tours, and learn about the history of the Stony Run Stream Valley below.
Check out this great gallery of the tour from November 2013, featured in the Baltimore Sun.
Ma and Pa Railroad
Some Baltimore City residents recall the small train, lovingly called the Ma and Pa Railroad (short for the Maryland and Pennsylvania Railroad) that ran from Baltimore to York, PA along the Stony Run Stream Valley. The first passenger service, from Baltimore to Towson, began in 1882. Later the train carried agricultural products, coal and the US Mail as far north as York, PA— a trip that took four hours!
When the railroad ceased operation around 1958, the track was removed and the rail bed and stream slopes naturalized as a pathway. Today, many city dwellers enjoy hiking along the stream from south of Northern Parkway, across Cold Spring Lane, all the way down to the playing fields at Wyman Park Drive and Sisson Street, where the stream disappears into a tunnel to join the Jones Falls River.
The Roland Park Community website has a great history page that features old photos and maps of the area, including the Ma and Pa Railroad line.
Olmsted Brothers’ Wyman Park
The 1911 Olmsted Brothers General Plan for Wyman Park in the Stony Run transformed the Stony Run section of the former Wyman Estate and created San Martin Drive, as Johns Hopkins University developed its new Homewood Campus on the Charles Street section of the estate. The Olmsted Brothers 1926 Report and Recommendations on Park Extension for Baltimore included a plan for a linear park along the narrow Stony Run stream valley from University Parkway to Northern Parkway.
Read more about the Olmstead Brothers and Wyman Park in the Spring 2011 edition of The Olmstedian (PDF) >