In 1904 the plot of land, located at 103 West Market Street, Baltimore, Fairfield County, Ohio, on which the “Town Hall” building now sits was deeded to the Village of Baltimore by Henry Hildrand, the founder of New Market. New Market was the original name of Baltimore from 1825 to 1833. That year the Village of Baltimore residents voted to issue bonds for the construction of a town hall, fire station and caboose. Bonds totaling $6,000.00 were issued in June 1904. Later that year a number of small businesses located on the ground that the town hall was to be built on were moved to make way for construction.
On April 20, 1905, the foundation of the building was started and in May 1906 additional bonds were sold to complete construction and furnish the building. The building is a three-story Italianate structure. Records have been lost which describe who built the building. What is known is that frescos in the second-floor theater and third-floor meeting room portions of the three-story building were done by George Siegfried, a well-known artist of the time.
Before closing the second and third floors of the building for restoration, the building was home to a variety of business ventures ranging from a chicken feather cleaning operation to an opera company to a movie theater.
The second floor, a theater with a balcony, offered operas, theatrical presentations and movies. The third floor was owned by the Baltimore Lodge and used as a meeting hall until the Village of Baltimore purchased it in 1992 so that the character of the building could be preserved. In later years , the Millersport Community Theater previewed its plays, open houses were held during the Baltimore Festival and “Trick or Treat Theater” brought close to 1,000 to the facility.
The Victoria Opera House, located in the heart of the downtown area of Baltimore, provides an historic focal point to the residents and visitors of Baltimore.
Your tax deductible donation can be made via credit card through PayPal or by mailing a check or money order to:
Fairfield County Foundation • 162 East Main Street, PO Box 159, Lancaster, Ohio 43130 • (740) 654-8451
Enter: BDRC – Opera House in the memo line