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April 26, 2009

Throwback: Club Charles revisited

clubchas1.jpgCheryl from Cleveland read my blog about the Club Charles and sent me a couple cool photos. She writes:

I have a photo in a paper frame from Club Charles of my grandparents. It has an interesting scantily clad woman on the front holding a martini.

It looks like it's 1940's. Pretty risque for those times.

Your article will be printed and kept with the photo. My grandparents did live in Baltimore for a time. 

I've attached a scanned photo if you're interested ...






The woman in the middle is my grandmother, Virginia MacDonald, and the gentleman on the right (her left) is my grandfather, Donald (both gone now).

I don't know who the dark-haired gentleman is.

Thanks for sharing, Cheryl!

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 9:30 AM | | Comments (5)
Categories: Bars & Clubs


That isn't the same club charles. You can see on the card it said charles and preston. Originally club chuck in station north was called the wigwam when joy's mother esther owned it. After the other club charles closed they renamed the wigwam the club charles (i forgot the exact reason or what year they switched). Howver, the two never actually had anything to do with each other.

No offense, but your grandma looks to be getting more cozy with the unidentified dark-haired gentleman

That's some serious history Mike. Good job. When was it called the Wigmwam?

It was the Wigwam in the 60's I suppose. The next time I go down and see Joy I'll ask her for more specifics. I used to work there and the zodiac for years. Before Esther bought the club it was a crab house. The upper level was where the people would eat on paper covered tables. The zodiac was a paint store and before that it was a dairy or creamery of some sort. Supposedly the window that you see when you're going up the steps towards the bathrooms/kitchen is where the driver of the horse-drawn milk carts would pull to get their delivery tickets.

I believe the one connection between the two CCs was that Esther worked at the Charles and Preston club as a hatcheck girl once upon a time. I guess she liked the name ...

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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