Altamont - Confederate Railroad Raid

Altamont - Confederate Railroad Raid (HMP3Z)

Location: Swanton, MD 21561 Garrett County
Country: United States of America

N 39° 25.677', W 79° 16.78'

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On April 26, 1863, a detachment of Confederate Capt. John H. McNeill's partisan rangers attacked the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad facilities here at Altamont. They were part of a larger group that entered Oakland that Sunday as Confederate Gen. William E. "Grumble" Jones led an incursion into West Virginia and Maryland to hamper the rail movements of Federal troops and supplies.

Capt. Edward H. McDonald led the ranger detachment into Altamont to destroy the facilities here. First, the rangers cut the telegraph wires so that other stations on the line could not be warned. Then they destroyed the switching machinery and the switches in the track (Altamont was a switching area for "helper" engines used on the 17-Mile Grade).

The rangers also captured a locomotive at the top of the grade here. A soldier climbed in the cab and opened the throttle, intending to reverse it downgrade and either wreck it on a curve or crash it into an approaching train. The engine ran forward rather than backward, however, and headed towards Oakland. It would have wrecked at the burned bridge west of Oakland that had been burned by another detachment of rangers that morning, but it ran out of steam first.
HM NumberHMP3Z
Series This marker is part of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad (B&O) series, and the Maryland Civil War Trails series.
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, September 25th, 2014 at 6:32am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)17S E 648069 N 4365680
Decimal Degrees39.42795000, -79.27966667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 39° 25.677', W 79° 16.78'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds39° 25' 40.62" N, 79° 16' 46.80" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)301
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 2-98 Altamont Rd, Swanton MD 21561, US
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