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About the Gate House


John Grimes--ower of the former hotel in Sykesville, built by James Sykes and destroyed by a flood in 1868, and a broken spoon from the hotel found along the Patapsco River.


The B&O railroad tracks into town and (in the distance) the Sykesville Hotel which washed away in the flood of 1868.

Becoming a Museum

The Gate House didn't start life as a museum. Nor did it serve long in its original purpose as a controlled entry point to Springfield Hospital.

Beginning in 1913, the family of William Shipley lived in the Gate House. Shipley served as the chief purchasing agent for the hospital, and lived here until his death in 1954.

After the Shipleys left, the house fell into disrepair, and when Route 32 cut the town off from the hospital, the Gate House became further neglected. Eventually, the town of Sykesville bought the house from the state for $100.

A group of volunteers put in countless hours, gathering artifacts, analyzing paint, battling termites, and turning the old house into a town museum.

How Can We Help You Engage with History?

You can learn about what is currently on display using the "Exhibits" menu item at the top of the page. 

To accommodate our small building's capacity limits, we offer research appointments and private tours by appointment only. Please call the curator at (410) 549-5150 to schedule group tours or research visits.

The Gate House welcomes volunteers aged 12 (6th grade) and up. Call or visit for details about current volunteer needs. For Student Service Learning Information please see our "Kids at The Museum" menu item. 

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