Washington, DC – Day Trip 2 – Maryland – Courageous Pacesetters

Maryland has more geographical feminine names than any other American state and it has always shown a commitment to acknowledge the contributions of its female citizens. That’s laudable, and, unfortunately, unusual. But, while you are visiting Washington, DC, especially during March, which is Women’s History Month, then take the opportunity to follow the easy Heritage Trail which Maryland has forged to showcase the lives of some extraordinary (yet ordinary) women, unsung heroines, who deserve to be known and appreciated.

Many of these women lived in the parts of Maryland which are contiguous to Washington, DC, so it is easy to incorporate them into your visit. And, when you return home, maybe you can be instrumental in helping more people learn about the women who shared in the establishment of the area where you live!

BEATTY-CREAMER HOUSE photos from 1997
9010 Liberty Road • Ceresville, Maryland 21701

Susanna Beatty was a New York widow who, in 1732, packed a wagon with her 8 grown children and supplies and moved to the “wilderness” to raise her family! With 1,000, then 2,000 acres, she was the first woman landowner in Frederick County. That’s amazing courage. And, it’s all the more extraordinary when one finds that both Susanna and her husband were descendants of England’s royal family. Learn more here about Susanna Beatty.

BARBARA FRITCHIE HOME
154 West Patrick Street • Frederick, Maryland 21701 • 301-698-0630

This small red-brick house is an exact replica of the original Fritchie home. The flag which hangs outside the dormer window has special significance. At that window, is where 95 year-old Barbara Fritchie is said to have waved her union flag as Confederate General Stonewall Jackson and his troops marched through town in 1862.

The legend goes that Jackson was so angered by the sight of the flag that he ordered his men to fire on her! But the tiny old woman kept waving it. In doing so, she so impressed the general that he quickly moved out of town.

Fritchie was so well known for her exuberant union loyalty that historians agree that such an act of patriotic defiance would have been more than possible. Her courage has inspired many and famous American poet, John Greenleaf Whittier, immortalized her in a poem as uttering bold words, “Shoot if you must, this old gray head, but spare your country’s flag, she said.” The entire 60 line poem graces the monument over her grave in Mount Olivet Cemetery in Frederick. Here, find other interesting Frederick County historic sites, nearby.

NATIONAL MUSEUM OF CIVIL WAR MEDICINE
48 E. Patrick Street (P.O. Box 470) • Frederick, Maryland, 21705 • 301-695-1864

This museum is dedicated to telling the medical story of the American Civil War — from the stand-point of the aftermath of the battles, the care and comfort of the wounded, the caregivers, and the medical innovations of the time. The renovated museum seeks to minimize the physical barriers which usually separate visitors from exhibits. It showcases the contributions made by women who served as nurses — supervising nursing matrons and volunteers — as they are an important part of the medical story. Exhibits include information on Euphemia Goldsborough of Baltimore and other women and female groups who served the wounded.

PENN ALPS AND SPRUCE FOREST ARTISAN VILLAGE
17 Casselman Road, Route 40 • Grantsville, Maryland 21536 • 301-895-3332

This art colony was founded by Alta Shrock, one of the first Mennonite women to earn a doctorate degree. New Link for Penn Alps and the Spruce Forest Artisan Village gives additional information. It was developed to showcase the arts and crafts of Maryland’s Appalachian artisans. Relocated original log cabins house 10 artists. Potters, weavers and quilters, many of whom are women, have an important place to work their craft. Penn Alps, which is adjacent to the village, has a restaurant, craft gallery and shop. Dr. Shrock left plans in her will to have her own home there become a museum celebrating Appalachian culture.

STEPPING STONE MUSEUM
461 Quaker Bottom Road • Havre de Grace, Maryland 21078
This museum preserves and demonstrates rural arts and crafts, and many of the artisans are women. These crafts are important to keep. One never knows what the future holds, and if we need to return to a simpler life, for whatever personal or societal reason, then learning these skills will be essential.

Enjoy!

Part 1: C&O Canal

Washington, DC Travel – Archived Articles

©2011 mystic at Travel Vacation Review

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