John V. Baggett Park
In 2003 the Commissioners of St. Mary's County authorized beginning a rails-to-trails project in St. Mary's County. The Three Notch Trail is a 10' wide multi-use trail constructed on the former railroad right-of-way, which runs south from Hughesville to Lexington Park. The trail provides numerous recreation, tourism, economic and transportation benefits and opportunities for both county citizens and tourists.
Trail Section Lengths
· Baggett Park to MD 5 = 2.65 miles
· MD 5 to MD Route 236 Thompson's Corner Rd = 5 miles
· MD Route 236 Thompson's Corner Rd to Northern Senior Center= I mile
· Northern Senior Center to Deborah Dr = 2.25 miles
Rail History 1954-1970
The Navy made its last train run on June 30, 1954; however, the Pennsylvania Railroad and contractors continued to use the line to deliver supplies to the Patuxent River Naval Air Station until the early 1960s. The Pennsylvania Railroad then ran a weekly train in and out of the county until 1965. The railroad was declared excess government property in 1966 and in 1970 the right-of-way was purchased by St. Mary's County Government.
John V. Baggett Park at Laurel Grove
Mr. John V. Baggett served as the county's first Recreation and Parks Director from 1969 until his retirement in 1991. He set
out to develop a system of regional, community and neighborhood parks, as well as waterfront public landings. The 47-acre Laurel Grove Park was acquired in 1973 and developed as one of the county's first parks in 1975.
Thousands of children and adults have enjoyed the many parks and wide variety of recreational and sports programs established by Mr. Baggett in the twenty-two years he worked for the county. On October 19, 2002, St. Mary's County commemorated his vision and service by renaming this park the John V. Baggett Park in his honor.
Three Notch Trail Contributors
St Mary's County Recreation and Parks thanks all those who have contributed to the success of the Three Notch Trail project.
Commissioners of St. Mary's County:
Francis Jack Russell, President. Lawrence D. Jarboe, Cynthia L. Jones, Todd B. Morgan and Daniel L. Morris.
Congressman Steny Hoyer
The St. Mary's County Delegation: John F. Wood, Jr., John L. Bohanan, Jr., Delegate Anthony J. O'Donnell, and Senator Roy P. Dyson
MDOT/SHA Transportation Alternatives Program
Maryland Program Open Space
Maryland Heritage Areas Authority
Maryland Bikeways Program
SHA National Recreational Trails Program
Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative
Recreation and Parks Staff: Phil Rollins, Former Director; Brian Loewe, Director; Parks Division Staff; Kathy Bailey and Marie Urbanski
Special thanks to contributors to the interpretive panel and kiosk project: Jason Babcock , Marilyn Baggett, Grace Mary Brady, J. Roy Guyther, M.D., Carolyn Laray, Carol Moody, Linda Reno and John Sothoron
The county dedicates and renames the renovated Laurel Grove Park as John V. Baggett Park at Laurel Grove.
Mr. Baggett surveys erosion issues at Elms Beach Park
· Motorized vehicles are prohibited (except motorized wheelchairs)
· Trail opens at sunrise and closes at sunset
· Travel only at speeds which are safe and appropriate for trail conditions and usage
· Travel to the right. Move left to pass, give appropriate warning to trail users ahead, and move off the trail when you come to a stop
· Pedestrians have the right of way
· Obey helmet laws
· Stop at all road/street crossings
· Pets must be on leash and controlled at all times
· Alcoholic beverages are prohibited
· No bicycle races or competitive speed training
· Please respect private property and be a courteous user of public lands
Inform others of hiking/biking plans, carry a phone, walk with a friend, and be aware of surroundings
Emergency 911. St. Mary's County Sheriff's Office 301-475-8008