Washington Monument State Park

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Washington Monument State Park
Maryland State Park
Washington Monument, Western Maryland, Angled View.jpg
Country United States
State Maryland
Counties Frederick, Washington
Elevation 1,394 ft (425 m) [1]
Coordinates 39°30′02″N 77°37′24″W / 39.50056°N 77.62333°W / 39.50056; -77.62333Coordinates: 39°30′02″N 77°37′24″W / 39.50056°N 77.62333°W / 39.50056; -77.62333 [1]
Area 162 acres (66 ha) [2]
Established 1934
Management Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Location in Maryland
Website: Washington Monument State Park
Washington Monument
Boonsboro Washington Monument.JPG
Erected in Memory of Washington July 4th 1827 by the citizens of Boonsboro
Nearest city Boonsboro, Maryland
Area 104 acres (42 ha)
Built 1827
Built by Isaac C. Lutz
Architect unknown
Governing body State (Maryland Department of Natural Resources)
NRHP Reference # 72000588[3]
Added to NRHP November 3, 1972

The Washington Monument, located four miles (6 km) east of the town of Boonsboro, in Washington County, Maryland, United States, honors the "Father of Our Country," George Washington. The monument sits near the summit of South Mountain's Monument Knob (1,539 feet (469 m)).[4] The 34-foot-tall (10 m)[5] tower is protected within Washington Monument State Park.[6] The monument was added to the National Register of Historic Places on November 3, 1972.[3]


The original tower, built in 1827, was the first monument dedicated to George Washington to be completed.[6] The Baltimore Washington Monument was completed two years later, although it had been started considerably earlier in 1815. The famous Washington Monument in the District of Columbia was not completed until 1885.

The dry-laid stone tower was built on July 4, 1827, by the citizens of Boonsboro who marched to the site en masse after assembling in the town square at 7 a.m. At the end of that day, the tower stood at 15 feet (4.6 m) high on a base 54 feet (16 m) in circumference. Later that year, "after the busy season," workmen returned to complete the tower to a height of 30 feet (9.1 m).[5]

Although it was a popular meeting place for the citizenry of Boonsboro, weather and vandalism reduced the monument to rubble. In that condition, it was used by the Union Army as a signal station during the Civil War.[7]

First restoration

In 1882, the Odd Fellows Lodge of Boonsboro sponsored the tower's restoration. A canopy was added and a vehicle road built up the mountainside. A decade later, however, the tower again fell into ruin when a crack in the wall was not repaired.[5]

CCC restoration

The tower was rebuilt in its present form by members of the Civilian Conservation Corps. Workers set in place the original cornerstone and a facsimile of the dedication tablet (pictured at right), and a third dedication ceremony was held on July 4, 1936.[5]

State park

The Washington County Historical Society purchased the 1-acre (0.40 ha) site in 1920 and deeded it to the state for use as a state park in 1934. The section of the Appalachian Trail that runs through the park is used by visitors to reach the monument. A visitors center at the trail head has exhibits on the natural and cultural history of the area. Picnicking facilities are also available.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Washington Monument State Park". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. 
  2. ^ "Fiscal Year 2014 DNR Owned Lands Acreage" (PDF). Maryland Department of Natural Resources. December 18, 2014. Retrieved July 24, 2015. 
  3. ^ a b Staff (2009-03-13). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.  Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "nris" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
  4. ^ "Monument Knob". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. 
  5. ^ a b c d "Washington Monument State Park History". Maryland DNR. Archived from the original on December 3, 2013. Retrieved November 27, 2013. 
  6. ^ a b c "Washington Monument State Park". Maryland DNR. Retrieved November 21, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Washington Monument". National Register Listings in Maryland. Maryland Historic Trust. Retrieved November 27, 2013. 

External links[edit]