Near Relay in Baltimore County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
A Rural Vacation Spot
Designed by B&O architect E. Francis Baldwin, the station's gothic architecture with extravagant stonework, grand towers and many windows belied its modest size. An exquisite Victorian garden adorned the station's exterior.
The town of Relay proved to be a poor location for such a magnificent structure. By the 1870s, Relay had ceased to be a major interchange point for intercity passenger trains. Though the station attracted a trickle of vacationers, by the 20th century it was used primarily for employee housing, offices and storage. It was demolished in 1950.
"The station was the showplace of the line; many people, overwhelmed by the scenery and the clear air, stayed in the comfortable Viaduct Hotel all summer. Near by was a large park, a beautiful garden filled with shrubs and flowers and shade trees. usually that area was quiet and serene, but on the Fourth it was transformed into a combination carnival and county fair." - John Randolph Stidman, Baltimore Sun, June 28, 1953.
Text with lower middle photo: The Viaduct Hotel's "English Romantic" garden.
Text with upper middle photo: A promotional photo taken shortly after the Viaduct Hotel's opening in 1873.
Erected by Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Chesapeake Bay Gateways Network.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad (B&O) marker series.
Location. 39° 13.34′ N, 76° 42.708′ W. Marker is near Relay, Maryland, in Baltimore County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Washington Boulevard (U.S. 1) and South Street. Touch for map. Marker is within the Patapsco Valley State Park - Avalon area, just in front of the park gate building. Entrance to PVSP is about 300 feet north of the US 1 - South Street intersection. Marker is in this post office area: Halethorpe MD 21227, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Masterpiece of the Early B&O Railroad (here, next to this marker); During the Civil War The Thomas Viaduct (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Site of Old Relay Station and Hotel (about 300 feet away but has been reported missing); The Relay House (about 700 feet away); Elk Ridge Landing (approx. 0.4 miles away); World War II (approx. 0.4 miles away); Great War (approx. half a mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Relay.
More about this marker. The marker is about 400 feet east of where the Viaduct Hotel actually stood, but can only be reach by foot from the park roadway. Alternative path to the site avoiding the climb up to track level is outside of the park via Railroad and Viaduct avenues in Relay, Maryland. There is a missing "Site of..." marker where the station hotel actually stood, but only the marker base remains today.
Regarding A Rural Vacation Spot. The station and hotel were also known as the Relay Station and Hotel.
Categories. • Bridges & Viaducts • Industry & Commerce • Notable Buildings • Railroads & Streetcars •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on July 5, 2008, by F. Robby of Baltimore, Maryland. This page has been viewed 2,780 times since then and 53 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on July 5, 2008, by F. Robby of Baltimore, Maryland.