Walter Sondheim, Jr. Papers
Scope and Contents
- Sondheim, Walter, Jr., 1908-2007 (Person)
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Sondheim was born in Baltimore, Maryland in 1908 and graduated from Park School in 1925. He graduated from Haverford College in Pennsylvania with a B.S. in 1929 and he served in the U.S. Navy during World War II in 1944-1946. Sondheim worked at Hochschild Kohn & Company, a local Baltimore department store, between 1929 and 1970 and retired as a senior vice president of the store. Sondheim was engaged in civic life throughout his career and held many positions as director, chairman, board member, etc. with local organizations and businesses. He was well known for his role as president of the Baltimore Board of School Commissioners in 1954-1957 during the desegregation of the city’s schools after the Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court decision. He was also known for his early involvement in urban renewal and the redevelopment of downtown Baltimore as Chairman of the Baltimore Urban Renewal and Housing Commission and Housing Authority of Baltimore City (BURHA) between 1956-1963, and for his role developing the Inner Harbor as Chairman of Charles Center-Inner Harbor Management in the 1970s and 1980s. After leaving his position with Charles Center-Inner Harbor, he held a position with the Greater Baltimore Committee and continued to be involved in numerous civic roles. Sondheim died in 2007.
[Information for this Biographical Note was collected from materials in the collection and from magazine articles, newspaper articles and obituaries found in “The Baltimore Sun,” “Baltimore Magazine,” and “The New York Times.”]
July 25, 1908 - February 15, 2007
Married Janet E. Blum, February 15, 1934. They later had two children: John W. Sondheim and Ellen S. Dankert.
Park School, Baltimore, Maryland - Graduated 1925
Haverford College, Haverford, Pennsylvania - B.S. 1929
1929-1970: Hochschild Kohn & Company
1944-1946: U.S. Navy
1972-1984: Chairman, Charles Center - Inner Harbor
1982-1984: Chairman, Market Center Development Corporation
1984: Executive Assistant to the Mayor of Baltimore
1984: President, Charles Street Management Corp.
1985: Management, Inc.
SELECTED CIVIC ACTIVITIES:
Maryland State Chairman, Crusade for Freedom, 1954-55
President, Board of School Commissioners, Baltimore, 1954-57
Chairman, Baltimore Urban Renewal and Housing Commission and Housing Authority of Baltimore City, 1956-1963
Chairman, Advisory Committee, Baltimore City Health Department
Chairman, Board of Trustees Goucher College
President, Board of Directors Sinai Hospital of Baltimore
President, Board of Directors Jewish Family and Children’s Bureau
Executive Committee, Greater Baltimore Committee, Inc.
Director, Associated Jewish Charities of Baltimore
Director, Baltimore Chapter, American Jewish Committee
Director, Baltimore Jewish Council
Director, Baltimore Goodwill Industries
Director, Baltimore Urban Coalition
Director, Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Baltimore, Inc.
Director, Citizens Planning and Housing Association
Director, Council for Equal Business Opportunity
Director, Mercy Hospital, Inc.
Director, Provident Hospital
11.7 Linear Feet
- Correspondence, 1950-1993
- Remarks, Speeches, and Talks
- Appointments, Boards, and Commissions
- Charles Center/ Inner Harbor
Accessing Digital Copies
- Central business districts
- Charles Center (Baltimore, Md.)
- Citizens Planning & Housing Association (Baltimore, Md.)
- City planning
- City planning -- Maryland -- Baltimore.
- Civic leaders -- Maryland -- Baltimore.
- Greater Baltimore Committee, Inc.
- Hochschild, Kohn & Co.
- Housing Authority of Baltimore City.
- Inner Harbor (Baltimore, Md.)
- Maryland -- Baltimore.
- Personal papers.
- Public housing
- Race discrimination.
- Urban renewal
- Urban renewal--Maryland--Baltimore.
- clippings files
- Walter Sondheim, Jr. Papers
- Finding aid created by UB Special Collections & Archives staff. Revised by Aiden Faust (2011). Revised by Laura Bell (March 2020).
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