Robert Goodloe Harper (1765-1825), a lawyer, U.S. Senator,. and Vice Presidential candidate, lived in this house, located directly across the street from the cathedral. Harper was also a leader in the Liberia movement, a controversial movement to help free African Americans colonize the west coast of Africa.
Enoch Pratt (1808-1896) moved to Baltimore in 1831 and began a wholesale hardware business. He invested heavily in coal mines and iron foundries, became very wealthy, and donated large sums for the benefit of Baltimore and North Middleborough, Massachusetts, his hometown. He funded the building of the Workingmen's Institute and Library in Canton, the Enoch Pratt Free Library system in Baltimore and the Sheppard Asylum (Now Sheppard and Enoch Pratt Hospital.)
Town houses that stood directly across the street from the cathedral's main entrance were demolished in the 1930s to make way for the current Enoch Pratt Free Library Building. Some of Baltimore's wealthiest citizens, including doctors, lawyers, merchants, senators and mayors, lived across the street from the cathedral where Pratt now stands.
Charles J. Bonaparte continuously fought for the rights of African Americans. While he was Attorney General, he expressed his underlying beliefs about race relations in America, “Every race of people is driven to the woods or die out that comes in contact with the Caucasian race. The Negro race is the only one race on the globe that has lived, thriven, flourished and multiplied by the side of the Caucasian race. This one fact bespeaks volumes in the Negro's favor, and no eloquence can be stronger than that single fad to prove the Negro's greatness.”
John Widgeon (1850-1937), an African American, worked for the Maryland Academy of Science, located on Mulberry, from 1870 to the early 1930s. Although Widgeon was hired as a janitor, he assumed the responsibilities of collecting, classifying and exhibiting many artifacts from the Academy's natural history collection. He died in 1937 after receiving an honorary Masters of Science degree from the Academy.