Built in circa 1780, Whites Hall is the birthplace and boyhood home of Johns Hopkins, who went on to found the world-renowned university and hospital that bear his name. Johns was born at Whites Hall in 1795 and it was his home until he left for Baltimore at the age of 17 to work in his uncle's grocery business.
HARD WORK AND SOCIAL JUSTICE
Whites Hall operated as a 500-acre tobacco plantation, employing slave labor. However, abiding by the local Society of Friends' (Quakers) decree, Johns' father, Samuel Hopkins, emancipated their slaves in 1807. As a result young 12-year-old Johns was forced to interrupt his studies to work in the fields at the Whites Hall plantation. This experience is thought to have imbued in him a sense of both hard work and social justice.
FALLEN INTO DISREPAIR
Whites Hall remained in the Hopkins family until 1910 when it was purchased by the Stewart Fruit Company, and continued operating as a farm until the early 1940s. From the 1940s until just 12 years ago Whites Hall was a private home.
Whites Hall, now boarded up to prevent vandalism
Johns Hopkins (May 19, 1795 - December 24, 1873) was an American entrepreneur, abolitionist and philanthropist of 19th-century Baltimore, Maryland. His bequests founded numerous institutions bearing his name, most notably Johns Hopkins Hospital, and Johns Hopkins University.
He was one of 11 children born into a family of quakers. In 1807, they emancipated their slaves in accordance with their local Society of Friends decree. Johns Hopkins is described as being an "abolitionist before the word was even invented", having been represented as such both prior to the Civil War period, as well as during the Civil War and Reconstruction Era.
In his will he bequeathed funds for a number of philanthropic causes, one of which was the Johns Hopkins Colored Children Orphan Asylum which offered educational and living facilities, and was praised by the Baltimore American as a place where "nothing was wanting that could benefit science and humanity"