Frederick County is steeped in history, from its early 1730’s settlement when Frederick Calvert, 6th and final Lord of Baltimore, offered land to anyone who would settle along the River Valley for free, to the 1864 Battle of Monocacy to the 1943 creation of Camp (now Fort) Detrick. For history buffs, Frederick County offers so much to see and learn. Here are our top three historic places to visit in Frederick County.
Monocacy National Battlefield
The Battle of Monocacy is not one of the bigger battles that you learn about in school, especially if you didn’t grow up in Maryland. It lasted just one day, and the Confederate Soldiers delivered a crushing defeat to the Union by nights end. However, it is often called ‘The Battle that Saved Washington” because of the important impact it had stopping the Confederate Army from taking and winning Washington, DC.
Visit the park, take a quick hike, or learn about the battle for free, as this National Park requires no admission, and offers ranger-guided tours from May through October. Tours include an introduction to the Battle of Monocacy, interpretive talks, museum tours and demonstrations. The park is open year-round for self-guided tours, a 6-mile car tour complete with an audio tour available for download.
Rose Hill Manor Park & Museums
Rose Hill Manor Park & Museums offers visitors with a look at 18th and 19th century American life, as well as the transportation and agricultural history of Frederick County. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Rose Hill Manor was once the retirement home of Maryland’s first governor, Thomas Johnson. The onsite Children’s Museum of Rose Hill Manor Park specializes in child-friendly exhibits, teaching even the youngest of visitors about early American life in Maryland.
National Museum of Civil War Medicine
During the Battle of Antietam and other area battles, the entire town of Frederick acted as a makeshift hospital for thousands of wounded Union and Confederate Army Soldiers. The National Museum of Civil War Medicine tells the story of the doctors and nurses who cared
for the wounded during some of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War. Learn about the harsh conditions, the soldiers, nurses and surgeons and their sacrifices, and the medical innovations that were discovered. This small museum is plentiful, with over 5,000 medical artifacts from the Civil War, and offers events, learning programs and walking tours to expand your knowledge and learn more about the important role that Frederick played in our nation’s history.