A road in Baltimore that follows the course of the Jones Falls. The southernmost portion of it passes through Baltimore's original industrial area, which was all powered by the river when it was first built. There are still a few working (electricity-consuming) factories and such down there, and a few of the old mill buildings have been converted into artist studios and the like, but most of it has been left to rust in peace. There is an old station of the Ma & Pa Railroad along the road; though the tracks are overgrown and the building is abandoned, the legend on it is still eminently readable.

Falls Road speaks to me of the past of Baltimore, of industry and prosperity long since departed. Though Baltimore might be a little far south to be considered in the Rust Belt, lower Falls Road is like a little piece of Bethlehem or Flint.

The upper part of Falls Road, especially north of Schawan Road speaks to a rural past of small scale agriculture and local industry. Baltimore County has seen fit to preserve much of this corridor from development, but the area has seen some gentrification. At the corner of Schwann Road and Falls is John Browns Store, which dates back to the 1700's. The road winds its way pleasantly past old mills and estates for several miles to the town of Butler. Butler still supports an operating historic quarry which produces flat hard tile-like stones consisting of slate flecked with mica known as Butler Stone, which is similar to flagstone and is well suited to walkways. Many of the buildings in Butler are built of this stone. Further north, the road winds its way past the Basignani Winery and more small farms and abandoned mills. The road reaches high ground at Sparks, and continues north for about 6 or 7 more miles and alternately passes through farmland and woodland. The road also passes through the headwaters of the Gunpowder River.

The paved part of Falls Road ends at Alesia Road, about 3 miles south of the Mason-Dixon Line, but an unpaved gravel road continues another mile or so to Schalk Road near Lineboro.

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.