Whether your passion is history, town festivals, hiking, golf, gourmet dining, fine art, fishing boating or bridges made of stone, Washington County is for you. Whether you are fascinated by Civil War Battlefields or songbirds, antiques or architecture, feather beds or full country breakfasts, shopping in quaint towns or gliding down nearby snowy slopes; you'll find your thrills in our rolling hills. If your idea of adventure is wandering down winding country roads amidst fragrant orchards, misty mountain forests, lush farmland and rushing streams, you'll revel in the splendor of Washington County.
Washington County was the first county to be named after George Washington and was founded only weeks after our nation declared its independence. Known as the "Crossroads of the Civil War," it serves as the hub to visit major Civil War sites such as Antietam, Gettysburg and Harpers Ferry. Laced with parks, monuments and museums that tell America's story and span three centuries, this historical legacy includes the only remaining French and Indian War fort, the Appalachian Trail, the Antietam Battlefield, John Brown's Farm, 18th century mills and 19th century stone arch bridges, the C & O Canal and early railroads. Its thriving hub city, Hagerstown, was founded in 1762 and it's home to the acclaimed Maryland Symphony Orchestra, historic Maryland Theatre, the world class Washington County Museum of Fine Arts and many other attractions.
Enjoy the past, delight in your present stay in Washington County, and we know we'll see you again in the future.
Antietam National Battle Field
The Battle of Antietam was fought on September l7, l862 and consisted of three attacks on the Confederate left, center and right. The Confederates defended Sharpsburg Ridge with Stonewall Jackson on the left near Millers' Farm. under General Lee, who had only 40,000 troops. This was the bloodiest one day conflict in our nation's history.The Confederates pretended to retreat, but suddenly the South brought in reinforcements in a surprise attack. A core of 30,000 men were never admitted to the battle from the North and the Union Army lost. The Battle ended at sunset.
One soldier said: "The shock to the nerves is undeniable...a shattering of human flesh."
Lincoln said to wounded Confederate troops: "We are victims of Circumstance not enemies." Later, he declared, "I have long thought about the relationship of this war to slavery. I promised myself and my maker to write an Emancipation Proclamation." (Maryland in the Civil War, A House Divided, Johns Hopkins Press, l994.)
Log House Museum
During the 19th century a lady who could cast spells lived in the Log House. Her husband often watched his wife cast and remove spells, reading passages from the Bible. He thought the process was simple and waited for a chance to try his luck. One day he walked to Mill Street where a horse was pulling a wagon. He said the magic words, and the horse did stop dead in its tracks. Unfortunately, he didn't know how to remove the spell. The owner of the horse was getting angrier by the minute. His wife saved the day.
Twenty log houses are standing in the town, but the Browns worked 25 years to remove the siding from theirs. When the old log house opened its doors as a museum, state delegates, a senator, and county commissioners united to congratulate Carl and Maxine Brown. A message was read from the governor. Carl Brown died in 1993, but what a marvelous gift he left. The family room is filled with unusual items and the kitchen is furnished with items used l50 years ago. The upstairs contains one of the largest primitive tool collections in the area. Call to see the house at 301-842-2553.
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