Cannonball

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One tank trips: Monocacy National Battlefield near Frederick, Maryland

The monument to York County’s 87th Regiment, Pennsylvania Volunteers is on Araby Church Road (or the old Georgetown Pike) on the battlefield of Monocacy. Large sections of the battlefield have been preserved by the National Park Service and other entities, although the Pennsylvania memorial is surrounded on three sides by private property.

The entrance to the new (opened in 2007) Visitors Center at Monocacy National Battlefield. This is on the Urbanna Pike just 3 miles south of I-70 near Frederick, Maryland. It’s about an hour and a half from York, PA. This past Saturday, my son Tom and grandson Tristan spent the day at Gettysburg and Monocacy on a beautiful day. There is no admission charge to the park or to the museum / visitors center.

The museum on the second floor of the Visitors Center has several quite nice interactive displays, including a lot of material interesting to children, as well as adults.

Unlike Gettysburg, the electric map at Monocacy was moved from the old Visitors Center to the new one. Being a wargamer, I really enjoy these kinds of 3D displays.

The Best farm saw considerable action during the Battle of Monocacy. It was also where three Union soldiers from Indiana discovered Robert E. Lee’s “lost order” during the Maryland Campaign. The farm is now open to the public, and includes a granary, rebuilt stone barn (the original barn was destroyed by fire from Union artillery shells during the battle), springhouse, shed, and sprawling farmhouse.

The Thomas farm was the scene of some of the heaviest fighting at Monocacy.

The Worthington house was a field hospital during and after the battle. Located near Middle River Ford on the Monocacy River, the hilltop farm offered some sweeping vistas of the Catoctin Mountains. Hiking trails here and at the other three key buildings on the battlefield offer hours of exercise and nature, as well as history.

The kid-friendly museum at the visitors center includes a display where children can try on a replica Confederate uniform