In early 1892 a handful of Fredericktowne ladies decided there was a need to provide for: "Persons of respectable parentage and good character, who, in advanced age, by reason of the death of their natural protectors, by loss of fortune, by physical infirmity, or other inability to care for themselves are unprovided with the means of obtaining the comfort and security so necessary for the repose of mind and body which should ever attend the declining years of life." Thus, the "Record Street Home for the Aged" began at 115 Record Street in a house donated to the enterprise by Mrs. Ann Ross and Mr. and Mrs. Charles W. Ross. In October of 1892, the Home was opened to its first two residents. Today, Record Street Home is a life-care facility for people of at least sixty-five years of age. Throughout the century, the Home has sought to maintain a family atmosphere, one of care with dignity and love where residents can spend the remainder of their lives without financial or housekeeping burdens.
The Home is the only one of its kind in Maryland still able to operate solely as a private institution. Generous donations from the Frederick community have enabled it to maintain this status. When an applicant is approved for residence, she is guaranteed lifetime care, including health care, with no additional costs.
The major force in determining the Home's character has always been the Board of Managers. The women who began the Home were a zealous lot, and "the ladies' board," as it was called, passed down this commitment to the present. Today a manager is chosen for her interest in the home and commitment to becoming involved in its activities. Each one, besides attending monthly meetings and committee assignments, shares a month with another manager to concentrate on the residents. This entails visiting each lady, providing entertainment, helping with social functions and generally being an integral part of the Homelife. A manager also serves as a Big Sister to a Little Sister resident, a relationship that rotates annually and fosters a special bond between them. As there are more managers than residents, no resident is allowed to feel lonely.
In addition to the Board of Managers, there is a Board of Trustees that manages the financial assets of the Home. This two-tier management structure is rooted in the facility's 1892 charter. Unusual even in its time, it is unique today; but, it continues to function effectively since its inception over one-hundred and twenty-five years ago.