Ocean City’s downtown is replete with old buildings, some of them dating back to the 19th century and still functioning as they were originally intended to today. On Saturday, Oct. 13, the Ocean City Life-Saving Station Museum — itself one of the oldest structures in town — held its first Historic House Tour, allowing visitors to step inside some of downtown’s most historic churches, bed & breakfasts and beach homes, and reminisce on Ocean City days of yore.
The tour was designed by event chairman Daphne Hurley, its purpose to raise funds for the George and Suzanne Hurley Scholarship Fund. The memorial scholarship is open to graduating seniors of Stephen Decatur High School who plan to further their education at Wor-Wic Community College, Salisbury University or the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.
In addition to the scholarship, Hurley was inspired by the abundance of old and history-rich buildings that make up Ocean City’s downtown.
“You come up Baltimore Avenue and you travel to wherever you’re going, and there are all these places where I think, ‘what are they like inside? I’ve never been in there, that’s interesting,'” Hurley said. “As our footprint changes, so does our history. Before this all goes away, we wanted to give people a chance.”
Eight buildings were included on the tour, including the museum and St. Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church, St. Paul’s by the Sea Episcopal Church, the Atlantic House Bed & Breakfast, the Bay Breeze house, An Inn on the Ocean Bed & Breakfast, the Roberts Cottage and the Phillips’ family’s bayside home, where docents were present to give guests a brief history and tour of each location.
The museum hopes to make the tour an annual event. Below is just a glimpse into what was featured on the first Historic House Tour, along with an inside look at what many lovingly refer to as “old Ocean City.”
Kristin is a writer and photographer in Ocean City, Maryland, and is the content manager for OceanCity.com and other State Ventures, LLC sites. She loves getting reader-submitted stories and photos, so send her an email anytime. She also works part-time at the Art League of Ocean City and the Ocean City Film Festival and lives just off the peninsula with her dog and fiancé. Her photos can be found on Instagram @oc_kristin.