BGE's History


BGE was founded in 1916 as the nation's first gas utility where it began a tradition of superior service and reliability. Today you can
continue to rely on BGE as your premier energy delivery company, providing quality service to customers throughout Central Maryland.
1816 - 1841: A Company Comes To Light
  • In June 1816, Rembrandt Peale illuminated his Holliday Street museum in Baltimore with burning gas, dazzling the patrons gathered there with a  'ring beset with gems of light.'
  • Baltimore City Council speedily approved Peale's plan to light the city's streets. The Gas Light Company of Baltimore became the first gas company in the New World and BGE's direct predecessor.
1842 - 1866: Metering the First Success
  • The Company shows its first profit and first dividend after completing two full miles of gas main.
  • Metering replaced flat-rate billing. As a result, people of moderate means could now afford to light their home with gas. 
  • In 1855, the Spring Gardens plant was constructed where gas was distilled from coal, an improvement over the former use of tar or wood.
1867 - 1891: Competition & Consolidation
  • Rival gas companies appeared on the scene: Consumer Mutual Gas Light, Peoples Gas, Equitable Gas Light, and Chesapeake Gas. The competition wreaked havoc by tearing up the streets to lay parallel lines.
  • The public clamored for control of competition, paving the way for two consolidations that merged the rival companies into the Consolidated Gas Company of Baltimore.
1892 - 1916: The Merging of Two Great Powers
  • Following the introduction of Edison's incandescent lamp, electric company competition was fierce, but service was inconsistent. Power plants were small and inefficient, rates varied widely, and distribution amounted to a tangle of duplicated and overloaded overhead lines.
  • In 1906, Consolidated Gas joined with United Electric Light and Power Company to become Consolidated Gas Electric Light and Power Company of Baltimore, the city's first fully integrated gas and electric service company.
1917 - 1941: Growing Up and Out
  • In 1916, customers were introduced to central heating with gas- Baltimore's first taste of labor less heat with automatic temperature control. 
  • That same year, electric heating was introduced and for the first time in Company history, electric sales surpassed those of gas.
  • After the war, Baltimore city extended its limits by nearly 60-square miles, requiring that the Company to keep ahead of customer demand. New generating plants and substations were built, and capacity at Spring Gardens and existing power plants were increased. 
  • In 1925, the Company completed the first part of a high-voltage ring around the city to improve electric distribution and expanded into the merchandise and entertainment arenas with lighting and appliance stores, and radio broadcasting.
1942 - 1966: War, Peace and Prosperity
  • With population and production increases came record-breaking sales and expenditures for the Company that allowed for the conversion of its gas system from manufactured to natural gas and added numerous miles to its gas main.  
  • The Company changed its name to the Baltimore Gas & Electric Company and changed over from the obsolete direct-current (DC) electric distribution system to alternating-current (AC).
  • BGE helped form the Pennsylvania-New Jersey-Maryland (PJM) Interconnection, one of the world's largest, fully integrated electric grids and converted to electronic data processing.
1967 - 1991: Balancing the Demands•BGE celebrated its 150th Anniversary.   
  • In 1975, Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant opened to supply customers with inexpensive, clean, and reliable energy, and reduce our dependence on foreign oil. The energy crisis, rising interest rates and other instabilities brought strategic planning to the forefront.
  • Constellation Energy Group began its operation as the holding company for BGE and affiliates.
  • Following passing of energy deregulation in Maryland, BGE changed from an energy producer and delivery company to one focused on energy produced by other generation companies.
  • Energy supply competition opens in Maryland.
  • BGE receives approval for implementation of a smart grid in Central Maryland with a communications platform of more than 2 million smart meters.
  • Exelon Corporation and Constellation Energy Group complete their merger, effective March 12th 2012.