Flag Waving at Fawn Street

Baltimore Riot Trail: Flag Waving at Fawn Street

History: At the outset of the Civil War, the Massachusetts 6th regiment responded to President Lincoln's call for volunteers to defend the nation's capital. On April 19, 1861, en route between President Street Station and Camden Station, Captain Albert Follansbee led his four companies of federal soldiers as a large pro- confederacy crowd gathered before them, waving their Palmetto Flag to taunt the soldiers. Captain Follansbee marched on to Camden Station despite the mob's insults, intimidation and cheering of the Confederate President Jefferson Davis.

Right as Captain Follansbee's 240 men reached the corner of Fawn Street, the mob hurled rocks, injuring two soldiers. Lieutenant Leander Lynde had enough, stepped from the rank and file and tore the Palmetto Flag from its staff and placed it under his coat. A lone and courageous Baltimore policeman helped lead Follansbee's force to Camden Station over a mile away to board trains headed for Washington, D.C.

More to Explore: Just down the street is the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of African American History and Culture, where one can discover the role of African Americans in the Civil War and other compelling stories, including the Baltimore roots of jazz greats Eubie Blake, Cab Calloway and Billie Holliday.

Enjoy a fresh seafood lunch, and explore Baltimore's waterfront where you can tour the Historic Ships in Baltimore Museum, a collection of four waterfront ships and a screw pile lighthouse. See one or all five sites; including the U.S.S. Constellation, a wooden tall ship used to stop the slave trade, the U.S.S. Torsk, a WWII submarine, the steel hulled U.S. Coast Guard Cutter U.S.S. Taney, and a Chesapeake lightship.

Photo Credits:

  1. “Photograph of five Union Soldiers of the 6th Massachusetts Regiment, a unit that were engaged by Pro Confederacy rioters in Baltimore.”
  2. “Rioters attacking the 6th Massachusetts Regiment in the streets of Baltimore as they head toward Camden Station.” Prints courtesy of Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.