While Brown Memorial is temporarily closed due to COVID-19, you can visit remotely by taking a cell phone audio tour of the sanctuary, accompanied by photography on the website. Dial 410-630-4298 and listen and learn about Brown Memorial’s Tiffany and stained-glass windows, extensive wood carvings, Skinner pipe organ and labyrinth housed inside the 150-old sanctuary on the corner of Park and Lafayette Avenues in Bolton Hill.
The highlight of the tour is Brown’s collection of early 20th Century American art glass, including 11 Tiffany windows. Two of the Tiffany windows—one in each of the church’s transepts—measure 16 feet wide by 32 feet tall and are believed to be among the largest windows created for a church by the Tiffany Studios. The audio tour allows listeners to step close to the windows and learn about the biblical themes they explore, as well as the artistry that went into their creation.
The audio tour shares some of the history of Brown Memorial when its cornerstone was laid in 1879. Isabella Brown underwrote the church’s cost of $150,000, in honor of her late husband, George Brown, who was chairman of investment banking firm Alex Brown & Sons. The Tiffany windows were later installed in the early 1900s, each of them commissioned for members of the church at that time, including many prominent figures within the Baltimore community. The audio tour touches on the stories of some of these early church members.
In addition to stops at each of the church’s windows, the audio tour takes visitors through the church chancel filled with carved oak and where the 3,000-pipe organ built by the Skinner Organ Company in 1931 is housed. Listeners can also walk the church’s cork labyrinth, consisting of seven concentric circles.
Brown Memorial’s audio tour phone number, 410-630-4298, can be dialed from anywhere. Listeners can move through almost 30 audio stops around the sanctuary. Most stops are less than three minutes each. The entire tour takes approximately 45 minutes. Visit the Tour of Church & Tiffany Windows page on this website to visually follow along.