The Civil War legacy of Hagerstown and Washington County, Maryland includes an abundance of Civil War sites, cultural and historical museums, and monuments that span three centuries. Antietam National Battlefield is our headlining attraction, and we are also home to South Mountain State Battlefield where the Maryland Campaign of the Civil War began.
Hagerstown is the perfect Hub-and-Spoke location for civil war learning opportunities. With Antietam and South Mountain Battlefields right here in our backyard, we are just 45 minutes away from Gettysburg and Harper’s Ferry, and only 30 minutes away from Monocacy Battlefield. Also right here, visit the Kennedy Farm, where John Brown planned his raid on Harper’s Ferry.
Triage was born during the battle of Antietam. For the first time, wounded soldiers were prioritized by the extent of their injury, rather than by rank. It was this contribution of Clara Barton, founder of the Red Cross, who visited Antietam to nurse the wounded soldiers, that a monument was dedicated to her at Antietam. The Pry House Filed Hospital Museum was General McClellan’s headquarters, and an operating theater was set up there by Dr. Letterman to treat the wounded. Many homes and churches were used after Antietam, and tours can be arranged at some of the prominent locations where treating the wounded took place.
Hagerstown’s Arts and Entertainment District is home to the Maryland Theatre which offers year-round performances and events, including Maryland Symphony Orchestra concerts. Hagerstown is also home to the nationally acclaimed Western Maryland Blues Fest. Our Museum of Fine Arts, located in the award-winning City Park, boasts an outstanding collection with pieces by world-renowned artists such as Picasso, Rodin and Norman Rockwell.
A local river outfitter, River and Trail, offers guided whitewater rafting, tubing, kayaking, canoeing, zip lining, climbing, cycling and hiking trips in the historic area of Antietam Creek, the Potomac and the Shenandoah Rivers. Their signature specialty paddling and hiking tours offer food, beverage, and educational packages on the river or trail.
Also for hiking, the Appalachian Trail and the C&O Canal run along the southern border of our county and can provide a great way for students to learn about the outdoors, conservation, and biology and get a good work out at the same time!
We offer a range of lodging, all at prices lower that what are paid in Washington, D.C. and the suburbs. From Comfort Inns to Marriott and Hilton properties, there are hotels here that will suite your budget. All hotels have interior corridors, elevators, plenty of bus parking and nearby restaurants. If a pizza party on-site is part of the itinerary, our hotels have perfectly sized meeting spaces to meet those needs. Our groups sales department can issue a Request for Proposal to make the hotel decision an easy process for teachers. We can also assist with welcome packets, coupons, speakers and more.
We know you will enjoy all that our area has to offer. So much so, that you will begin planning your next student trip before the first one is over!