Washington Monument State Park

Washington Monument State Park (HM2DU7)

Location: , MD 21713 Washington County
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Country: United States of America
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N 39° 29.945', W 77° 37.422'

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Home of First Completed Monument to Honor George Washington

assault began, the Confederate troops broke and retreated back up the mountain and through the gap. Just as those troops reached the gap, Confederate General Howell Cobb's brigade arrived, and in a heroic attempt to stem the flight, his 1,300 men held their ground, bravely firing on the Federal charge. In a mere 15 minutes Cobb's legion was nearly decimated. When roll was called the following day only 300 answered.
After Crampton's Gap had been cleared of Confederate forces, Franklin ordered his troops into camp for the night. Had his attack not been delayed earlier in the day, he might have continued his pursuit of the Confederates into the valley beyond, driving a wedge between the two parts of Lee's divided and disorganized army, thereby allowing McClellan the opportunity to attack each section separately. The result could have been an early end to the war, as McClellan's troops would likely have overwhelmed each half. However, the attack was not renewed.
General Lee's RetreatOnce the Federal army cleared the gaps and took position on the same side of the mountain as the Confederates, Lee realized his campaign could not continue. He relayed word to his generals to proceed quickly back to Virginia. Lee set up a defensive line at Sharpsburg to protect against a Union attack. At Sharpsburg, Lee learned that the Union garrison at Harper's Ferry had surrendered. Lee ordered Jackson to march his forces to Sharpsburg, setting the stage for one of America's bloodiest battles, Antietam, fought three days later on September 17, 1862.
The Battle of Antietam was itself a draw, but it effectively ended Lee's effort to invade the North in 1862. The battle also provided President Abraham Lincoln an opportunity to issue his Emancipation Proclamation, which declared all slaves living behind Confederate lines free as of January 1, 1863. This strategic maneuver ended Confederate hopes of foreign recognition, and, perhaps, their best hope for winning the Civil War.
Learn MoreTo learn about the Battle of South Mountain, visit the Battlefield Office located near the entrance of Washington Monument State Park. Also, pick up a copy of the South Mountain Recreation Area's Adventure Guide.
The Washington MonumentOriginally erected in 1827 by the citizens of Boonsboro, Maryland, the Washington Monument became the first completed monument dedicated to the memory of America's first president, George Washington.
According to the legend, nearly the entire village of Boonsboro, some 500 people, trekked up South Mountain on July 4, 1827 to build and dedicate the Washington Monument. Constructed with granite found onsite, the monument took two days to construct. Boonsboro citizens completed half the structure on July 4th, and then finished it in a second day's effort later that fall. The monument was initially built without mortar. Huge stones were carefully selected and accurately cut, and then laid in the dry circular wall. Upon completion, the monument stood 30 feet high, with a circumference of 54 feet at the base.
In the years that followed, the Washington Monument became a popular local meeting place. It was also used as a signal station during the American Civil War. Weather, vandalism and neglect, however soon reduced it to a pile of rubble. In 1882, the Odd Fellows Lodge of Boonsboro restored the monument, however, it quickly fell into ruin again.
In 1920, the Washington County Historical Society purchased the one-acre site, and in 1934 deeded it to the State of Maryland for use as a park. The Civilian Conservation Corps, who also built the park shelters and museum, rebuilt the tower in its present form. The Maryland Department of Forestry (a predecessor of today's Maryland Park Service) held a rededication ceremony on July 4, 1936, exactly 109 years after that first day of patriotic activity by the citizens of Boonsboro, which produced the beginnings of the country's first monument to George Washington.

marker photo captions
· Artist's rendering of the Battle at Fox's Gap (Library of Congress)
· The 6th Wisconsin charges up Turner's Gap. The brigade lost 318 men at South Mountain, and lost 348 men at Antietam - nearly half their force (U.S. Army)
· The Washington Monument prior to state acquisition, July, 1931 · The Civilian Conservation Corps reconstructing the monument in 1935.
· Shortly after the monument's reconstruction, 1936



· Shortly after the monument's reconstruction, 1936
Details
HM NumberHM2DU7
Tags
Placed ByMaryland Park Service and Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Friday, January 25th, 2019 at 1:01pm PST -08:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 274398 N 4375449
Decimal Degrees39.49908333, -77.62370000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 39° 29.945', W 77° 37.422'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds39° 29' 56.7" N, 77° 37' 25.32" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)301
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling North
Closest Postal AddressAt or near Appalachian Trail, MD 21713, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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