On the site where this 18th-century Renaissance man once had a humble farmstead, a bright and airy museum now pays tribute to his accomplishments. Benjamin Banneker is best known for his work surveying the land that would become the District of Columbia, as well as for his successful series of almanacs. A free African-American born in 1731, he was mostly self-taught. He famously corresponded with Thomas Jefferson on the topic of racial equality. Visit during the museum's quiet hours for a closer look at the small collection of Banneker's writings, and a few of his trinkets that shine a light on the life and family of this exceptional man. Items unearthed during an archaeological dig, a telescope and wooden clock, similar to one Banneker built, are on display. A replica of his cabin is open behind the museum. On weekends, the museum has a lively schedule of family-friendly activities, festivals, nature presentations, and summer jazz concerts. Bring a picnic lunch and spend an afternoon in the leafy 142-acre park that surrounds the museum. It's filled with a colonial orchard, native plants, and six miles of walking trails including the paved Number Nine Trolley Trail of less than a mile, which leads into historic Ellicott City. I recommend pairing a visit to the museum with a leisurely walk to the old mill and railroad town for lunch.
Benjamin Banneker Historical Park and Museum
300 Oella Ave.
Our Rating Neighborhood Suburb of Oella, 11 miles from Inner Harbor Hours Museum Tues–Sat 10am–4pm; park daily sunrise–sunset Transportation From the Baltimore Beltway (I-695), take Exit 14 to Edmondson Avenue; proceed west on Edmondson to traffic circle at Old Frederick Road; turn onto Old Frederick Road, then right at stop sign onto Oella Avenue Phone 410/887-1081 Prices Free admission to museum and park ($3 donation suggested; some events have fee) Web site Benjamin Banneker Historical Park and Museum
Map300 Oella Ave. Baltimore
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.