Confederates Capture Train
— Gettysburg Campaign —In mid-June 1863, with rumors of a pending reinvasion of Maryland by Confederate forces, most Baltimore and Ohio trains stopped running past here. As tension mounted, the New York Times reported that no trains were departing Baltimore, "except the mail train to Harpers Ferry and the accommodation for Frederick." In the predawn hours of June 17, Confederate cavalry crossed the Potomac River and attacked Union cavalry at nearby Catoctin Station, while another unit captured a military train here. The train was carrying provisions for the Harpers Ferry garrison, which was moving from the imminent danger there to Baltimore. Four earlier trains had passed safely, and this was the last of the convoy. After first being attacked at Catoctin Stations, the train escaped to Point of Rocks, but here the engineer and conductor was captured together with fifteen passengers. The train, with its cargo of flour, was burned. Reports of the incident caused considerable anxiety in Frederick and the surrounding countryside. Before the end of the month, thousands of Union soldiers would pass by here on their way to cover the nearby gaps, knowing that Gen. Robert E. Lee's army was on the other side of the mountains.
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|UTM (WGS84 Datum)||18S E 281437 N 4350230|
|Decimal Degrees||39.27388333, -77.53368333|
|Degrees and Decimal Minutes||N 39° 16.433', W 77° 32.021'|
|Degrees, Minutes and Seconds||39° 16' 25.98" N, 77° 32' 1.26" W|
|Driving Directions||Google Maps|
|Closest Postal Address||At or near 3901-3907 MD-28, Point of Rocks MD 21777, US|
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