I don’t get to Second Chance in Baltimore that often, but whenever I do, I am amazed by the inventory—a mix of architectural salvage, antique house parts like railings, doors, knobs, and hardware as well as new and used building materials and antique furnishings, art, and rugs.
The Second Chance website about page describes itself well:
“In our throw-away world, buildings are only meant to last for 20 years, shingles are plastic and old-world craftsmanship is nearly impossible to find.
Second Chance gives old buildings new life. We work with local and regional architects, builders and contractors to search out old buildings which are entering the demolition phase.
We rescue the wood, metal, marble, plaster, stone and other architectural elements that make the building special. We give these pieces new lives, in new homes, in new ways, with new uses.
It’s a Second Chance.”
Or A LOT of second chances. When I say the place is a little overwhelming, I mean it. Spread out over 4 warehouses each with a unique collection, it takes some time just walking through—let alone trying to find something specific. When I go, I go with a plan. The other day for example I was looking for window moulding that would match what’s in the rest of my 90-year-old house. Of course they don’t make anything similar off the shelf today and when I go to the big box home improvement stores and show them a sample of what I need am typically met with a lot vacant stares.
Unfortunately, Second Chance was also a swing and miss for the moulding, but at least when I showed the sample piece to the gentleman in the building materials warehouse, he knew exactly where to point me, and even thought he had the exact profile. We couldn’t find it, but I will definitely be checking back—the inventory is always changing.
To learn more visit SecondChanceInc.org or go to their warehouses on Warner Street in Baltimore in between the Ravens M&T Bank Stadium and the Bus Depot. But if you go, make sure you leave yourself enough time . . . and take a pick-up truck so you can take home whatever you find.