Bel Air

Bel Air (HM50)

Location: Bel Air, MD 21014 Harford County
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Country: United States of America
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N 39° 32.133', W 76° 20.917'

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Southern Sympathizers Sought

On July 31, 1861, 300 men from the 12th Pennsylvania Infantry under Capt. Daniel Leasure marched into Bel Air to arrest Southern sympathizers and confiscate weapons from local militia units. The troops halted at the courthouse square, then dispersed to do their work. They blocked all of the roads leading to and from Bel Air and rounded up local citizens including Capt. Archer Jarrett of the Harford Light Dragoons, Henry Farandis, former state senator, and Thomas Hays, merchant. They arrested Jarrett when he refused to divulge the location of the militia's arms and inspected the homes of Farandis and Hays without success. (Hays's house still stands in Bel Air.) The Baltimore Sun reported that Hays was arrested and then released; Jarrett was released on September 22. After an unsuccessful day of searching the town, the Pennsylvanians departed.

Some Harford County residents served in the U.S. Army, and two of them received the Medal of Honor: Sgt. Alfred Hilton, Company H, 4th Regiment U.S. Colored Troops, and Col. Charles Phelps, 7th Maryland Volunteer Infantry. Other citizens joined the Confederate States Army. They included Capt. William Bissell, 8th Virginia Infantry Regiment, Pickett's Division, and Gen. James J. Archer, A. P. Hill's Division. Bissell's hotel stood across the street from the courthouse, where Archer,s portrait now hangs in the notable citizens gallery. His childhood home is located in Susquehanna State Park.
HM NumberHM50
Series This marker is part of the Maryland Civil War Trails series
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, September 11th, 2014 at 12:40pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 384104 N 4377078
Decimal Degrees39.53555000, -76.34861667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 39° 32.133', W 76° 20.917'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds39° 32' 7.98" N, 76° 20' 55.02" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)410, 443
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 9 W Courtland St, Bel Air MD 21014, US
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