Friday, July 15, 2011

Weekend special: History of Catoctin Creek Park!

After another long week of camps, we decided to make a bit of a different blog post this week. One of our interns has been working on deciphering the history of the park's land, and here's what we've learned so far.

The land on which Catoctin Creek Park and Nature Center sits was originally the home of John and Sarah Ann Sanner, who established a farmstead on the land in the mid-19th century. In 1866, the property was purchased by Oliver and Hanson Boyer, and the land remained in the Boyer family until 1913. After the Boyers sold the property, the land changed hands many times until being purchased by the Frederick County Board of Commissioners in 1974.

The ruins found on the lands of Catoctin Creek Park are federally protected as part of Historic Site 18FR994, "The Spring Secured".

While our intern is still busy trying to find the land records of the park in the State archives, we were also able to get in contact with a relative of a family who lived there. She provided us with some wonderful historical photos, as shown below.

The ruins of this building can be seen on the right
as you drive up into the park!

Another angle of the ruins near the entrance. This building
appears to have been an ice house for storing milk and other
perishable items.

Cows, the primary product of the farmstead.

A view of the land.

As this photo tells us, the overflow parking area at the top
of the hill actually used to be an orchard for
growing fruits!

As we learn more, we will create a separate section in the blog for historical and archaeological information about the park. Stay tuned!

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