Monocacy Aqueduct

Monocacy Aqueduct (HM18BU)

Location: Dickerson, MD 20842 Montgomery County
Country: United States of America

N 39° 13.369', W 77° 27.063'

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Inscription

Too Tough To Crack

— Antietam Campaign 1862 —

Confederate Gen. D. H. Hill's division crossed the Potomac at Point of Rocks on September 4, 1862, and marched south to clear Union forces from the area. His men breached and drained the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal at several places, burned canal boats, and damaged the Spinks Ferry Lock (Lock 27) south of here. They also breached the Little Monocacy Culvert but did not have enough tools or spare gunpowder to damage the vital Monocacy Aqueduct.

On September 9, Confederate Gen. John G. Walker's division spent several hours attempting to destroy the aqueduct, but were stymied by its "extreme solidity and massiveness." They camped near Licksville the next day and set off for Point of Rocks in the evening, after being surprised by the advance of Union forces under Gen. Darius N. Couch. The Federals deployed artillery near here to defend the aqueduct and Cheeks Ford.

(sidebar) Spinks Ferry lockkeeper Thomas Walter had been employed by the canal company since 1839. When Hill's division arrived, he pleaded with Gen. D.H. Hill not to destroy the aqueduct or lock, arguing that the Confederates could more effectively disable the canal by breaching earthen banks rather than masonry structures. Witnesses reported Walter became so heated they feared his arrest. These actions likely saved the canal company thousands of dollars, diverting destruction to more readily repairable areas. Walter was removed from his job for "collaborating with the enemy," but a petition from Walter's neighbors led to his reinstatement and recognition for protecting key canal structures.
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Details
HM NumberHM18BU
Series This marker is part of the Maryland Civil War Trails series
Tags
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, October 23rd, 2014 at 5:01am PDT -07:00
Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 288413 N 4344366
Decimal Degrees39.22281667, -77.45105000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 39° 13.369', W 77° 27.063'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds39° 13' 22.14" N, 77° 27' 3.78" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)301
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 15 Chesapeake and Ohio Canal Towpath, Dickerson MD 20842, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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