Clearing the Way to Washington

Clearing the Way to Washington (HM15T9)

Location: Bladensburg, MD 20710 Prince George's County
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Country: United States of America
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N 38° 56.126', W 76° 56.318'

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The Battle of Bladensburg on August 24, 1814, ended in defeat for the United States and allowed the British to invade Washington, D.C. Once the Americans realized the British route of advance, there was little time to prepare. They hastily established lines of defense near the port town of Bladensburg, where the British would cross the Eastern Branch of the Potomac (known today as the Anacostia).

The poorly trained and ill-equipped American militia, though superior in number, were no match for the seasoned British army. That night, as buildings in Washington burned and the victors ravaged the White House, news of the rout at Bladensburg spread throughout the countryside.

"The enemy are in full march to Washington. Have the materials to destroy the bridges." — Secretary of State James Monroe to President James Madison, August 23, 1814.

(Side bar)

Tour several War of 1812 sites in the Bladensburg area:
Start at the visitor center at Bladensburg Waterfront Park for information on these and other attractions:
* Bostwick House — Home of a British prisoner-of-war agent
* Upper Marlboro — Several 1812 sites from time of British occupation
* Dueling Grounds — Site of significant battle engagements
* Riversdale — Historic house museum with exhibits and programs on plantation life during the war
* George Washington House — Cannon fire from the battle reputedly scarred this 1765-era structure


Wounded in battle, American hero Joshua Barney was captured by the British, then pardoned for bravery.

HM NumberHM15T9
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, October 2nd, 2014 at 6:13pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 331971 N 4311398
Decimal Degrees38.93543333, -76.93863333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 56.126', W 76° 56.318'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 56' 7.56" N, 76° 56' 19.08" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)301
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 1200-1226 Anacostia Tributary Trail System, Bladensburg MD 20710, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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