Baltimore Heritage welcomed the Watkins family of Highlandtown into the Baltimore Centennial Homes Program last year during the neighborhood’s Salsapolkalooza festivities. The Watkins family joins six other families in Baltimore that we have identified so far as having lived in the same house for 100 years or more. In 2007 after his maternal great-uncle had passed away, Lee Watkins IV and his wife, Diana Alonzo, purchased the family house in Highlandtown. The home had great sentimental value to Lee and Diana because of the wonderful stories Lee had grown up hearing about his family relatives who lived there.
The house was built in 1910 and needed a lot of work, but this young couple felt all the more reason to keep the house in the family when they discovered that it contained many family heirlooms their relatives had left in excellent condition: furniture, a stairway and a front door constructed and finished by a great-uncle, and even an entire suit belonging to the uncle that fit Lee perfectly. Lee and Diana are raising their son, Noah, in Highlandtown’s young and ethnically diverse community. They enjoy being close to historic Patterson Park and living in a port town where they can enjoy the water views and water related activities. And who knows, with an even younger generation growing up in the family home, perhaps this house will see another century in the Oswinkle, Moran and Watkins family!