Falling Waters Battlefield


The Battle of Falling Waters, also known as the Battle of Williamsport and Battle of Hagerstown, occurred in July 1863 across swaths of Hagerstown, Williamsport and the Potomac River crossing. Preservation Maryland’s project here will prepare a strategic vision and plan for the protection of the battlefield (specifically the core battlefield land adjacent to the Potomac River crossing and the approach from Williamsport) while also considering the preservation of the Donnelly House as a resource for potential public or public/private use. The Donnelly house served as a makeshift Confederate headquarters and hospital during the prolonged battle and is located on a critical portion of the battlefield.

Preservation Maryland has selected Hanbury Preservation Consulting to complete a preservation project at the Falling Waters Battlefield in Washington County, Maryland. The project is funded by the American Battlefield Protection Program and is now in the public participation phase and two virtual public input meetings will be held in November 2020 to assess local interest in protecting sites on private property and develop a detailed plan based on this input and findings.

The final product will be a report on the consensus-building process, conclusions, recommendations, and protection strategies for the Battle of Falling Waters. It will include the collection of GIS mapping data for natural and cultural resources as well as protected lands. It will also include a detailed historic context about the battle. The project will be developed and deliverables produced during the period of January 2020 through February 2021. Updates will be provided on Preservation Maryland’s websites.

The pursuit of Gen. Lee's rebel army after Gettysburg by Edwin Forbes. Library of Congress.

The pursuit of Gen. Lee’s rebel army after Gettysburg by Edwin Forbes. Library of Congress.

Photo from Save Falling Waters 1803 Battlefield.

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