Maryland Monument at Antietam National Battlefield

Follow Maryland's Civil War Trails

By Sarah Dilworth

Whether you are a history buff, a military history fan, or looking for an adventure for the whole family, Maryland’s Civil War Trails have something for everyone.

Maryland Monument at Antietam National Battlefield

Some of the most decisive battles of the Civil War were fought on Maryland’s soil, a state whose citizens were just as ideologically divided as the soldiers on the battlefield. To honor this heritage, five unique trails span the state, each with an extensive number of sites of interest.

The Antietam Campaign Trail
Immerse yourself in Civil War history at this Western Maryland site.

This trail includes sites and stops on South Mountain, in Sharpsburg and Hagerstown, culminating at the Antietam National Battlefield, site of the deadliest single day of fighting during the War.  A Union victory served as the impetus for President Lincoln to issue the Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation.  While exploring the battlefield, get a sense of the role the diverse terrain played in the battle's outcome, from the Sunken Road to Burnside Bridge to the Roulette Farm. Take in an exhibition on battlefield medicine at the Pry House Field Hospital Museum, in the same building used as a hospital to treat injured soldiers during the Battle of Antietam.  Visit the Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area Exhibit and Visitor Center in the Newcomer House, and then stop into Nutter’s Ice Cream or Captain Benders (both on East Main Street in Sharpsburg) to fuel up for more museum and battlefield touring.
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The Gettysburg Campaign Trail: Invasion and Retreat
Monocacy National Battlefield
Visit Frederick

This trail details the routes taken and stops made by both Confederate and Union troops during June and July 1863, leading up to and directly following the Battle of Gettysburg. Key points of interest include Frederick’s National Museum of Civil War Medicine and the City of Hagerstown, now a thriving Arts & Entertainment District, where citizens witnessed fighting in the streets during the First and Second Battles of Hagerstown. Take in the town’s cultural arts scene and stop off for a meal at the Gourmet Goat.
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Baltimore Area Civil War Trail
Be inspired at this important War of 1812 site and birthplace of The National Anthem.
Ken Stanek Photography

The Baltimore Area Civil War Trail includes the Baltimore Walking Tour, which chronicles the high tensions among Baltimore’s divided residents. Pick up a guide to this walking tour at the Baltimore Civil War Museum, on the former site of the President Street railroad station where fighting erupted in what today is downtown Baltimore. Minutes from downtown you’ll find Fort McHenry, known primarily for its role in the defense of Baltimore from the British in the War of 1812, but which was utilized during the Civil War as a prison for Confederate soldiers and sympathizers. 
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John Wilkes Booth Trail: Chasing Lincoln's Assassin
John Wilkes Booth family home

Nowhere is the division of Maryland citizens more apparent than on the John Wilkes Booth Trail. Booth, born and raised at Harford County’s Tudor Hall, did not grow up with Southern sympathizers. It is even rumored that Booth’s father had connections to the Underground Railroad and assisted enslaved people. Nonetheless, Booth held differing beliefs which ultimately led him to assassinate President Lincoln. There are various points of interested to visit related to Booth’s escape and his pursuit and capture.. See the Surratt House Museum in Clinton where Booth stopped for supplies after Lincoln’s assassination.  Visit the Dr. Samuel A. Mudd House Museum in Waldorf where Booth received medical care for his broken leg from the unsuspecting Dr. Mudd. In a clearing leading into the woods in Bel Alton, see if you can spot the Pine Thicket marker that denotes the location where Booth spent several days hiding while receiving supplies from Confederates. For history buffs interested in Booth’s early years, the property and first floor of the historic Tudor Hall are open to visitors, and tours are conducted by the Spirits of Tudor Hall. Order or view Civil War trail maps 

Attack on Washington
Known for "The Battle that Saved Washington," Monocacy Battlefield saw Civil War action in July of 1864 when Confederate General Jubal A. Early invaded the North for the final time.
Visit Frederick

Known for "The Battle that Saved Washington," Monocacy Battlefield saw Civil War action in July of 1864 when Confederate General Jubal A. Early invaded the North for the final time.

In July 1864, Union and Confederate troops clashed at the Battle of Monocacy in Frederick. While considered a loss by the Union, it delayed the Confederate attack on Washington, D.C., enabling troops to protect the capital city. This last raid at Monocacy has become known as the "Battle That Saved Washington." The historic sites of Jerusalem Mill, Cockeysville and New Windsor are also on this trail, each of which fell victim to looting and raiding during Early’s Raid on Washington.
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Cities and Towns of the Civil War
Downtown Frederick's retail area
Visit Frederick

At the crossroads of conflict, the long war engulfed homes and livelihoods, leaving its mark throughout the region's cities and towns.  Local citizens, though divided by conviction, were united by compassion.  Discover these stories and more, while exploring local art, culture, dining, and shopping in Maryland's Civil War cities and towns.

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Civil War Trails Maps

National Museum of Civil War Medicine

Download the FREE Maryland Civil War Trails app