Inner Harbor in Baltimore, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Baltimore Riot Trail
"Keep back ... or I Shoot"
— Baltimore - A House Divided —
On April 19, 1861, Confederate sympathizers attacked the 6th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment as it changed trains en route to Washington, which the secessionists hoped to isolate. To learn more about the Baltimore Riot, the city's role in the Civil War, and railroad history, please visit the Baltimore Civil War Museum - President Street Station, at the corner of President and Fleet Streets. Open daily 10 a.m - 5 p.m.
A stone-throwing secessionist mob attacked Capt. Albert S. Follansbee's four companies of the 6th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment here as they marched to Camden Station to change trains for Washington on April 19, 1861. Just to the east, the harassed troops finally opened fire. Here, the violence reached a crescendo. Massachusetts Corp Sumner H. Needham was struck in the head, fell to the pavement, and died. Earlier, he told a comrade, "We shall have trouble today, and I shall never get out alive. Promise me, if I fall, that my body will be sent home." Pvt. Luther C. Ladd was shot and killed, proclaiming "All Hail to the Stars & Stripes" as he collapsed. The mob shot Addison Whitney dead and beat Charles
Baltimore Mayor George W. Brown learned of the riot and hastened first to Camden Station, where all was calm. Then he heard shots coming from Pratt Street. He met Follansbee at the head of the marching column near here and told him, "You must defend yourselves." Brown picked up a dropped musked and brandished it, threatening the mob. Police Marshall George P. Kane and a company of policemen soon arrived to hold the crowd at bay as Kane shouted, "Keep back, men, or I shoot!"
Erected by Maryland Civil War Trails.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Maryland Civil War Trails series list.
Location. 39° 17.178′ N, 76° 36.803′ W. Marker is in Inner Harbor in Baltimore, Maryland. Marker is at the intersection of Light Street (Maryland Route 2) and East Pratt Street, on the left when traveling south on Light Street. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Baltimore MD 21202, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. City Center (within shouting distance of this marker); Mob Scene (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Welcome Baltimore’s Maritime Heritage (about 700 feet away); USS Constellation (about 700 feet away); The Port of Baltimore (about 700 feet away); Adventure Begins at the Bay's Front Door (about 800 feet away); Wendel Bollman (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Inner Harbor.
More about this marker. The marker features two photographs and two illustrations. The photographs are of Mayor George W. Brown and Police Marshall of George W. Kane.
One illustration has the following caption:
"Lexington of 1861" The title reflects the efforts of secessionists to identify their cause with that of their Revolutionary forebears.
The other illustration is labeled as follows:
The First Union Dead, Ellsworth was killed in Alexandria, Va., on May 24, after the deaths here of Whitney, Needham, and Ladd.
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. Take a tour of the Baltimore Riot Trail.
Credits. This page was last revised on April 17, 2020. It was originally submitted on March 12, 2008, by Christopher Busta-Peck of Shaker Heights, Ohio. This page has been viewed 2,920 times since then and 2 times this year. Photos: 1. submitted on March 12, 2008, by Christopher Busta-Peck of Shaker Heights, Ohio. 2. submitted on March 14, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. 3, 4. submitted on March 12, 2008, by Christopher Busta-Peck of Shaker Heights, Ohio. 5, 6, 7. submitted on February 24, 2018, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. 8, 9. submitted on February 28, 2018, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.