Hancock in Washington County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
The Busiest Village on the Road
Harper’s Magazine, 1879
By 1840, Hancock was a major stop on the National Road. Here, travelers could prepare for the nearby mountains or rest after the long up and down ride from Cumberland.
As many as sixteen “gayly painted” coaches sporting names like the National Road or Stockton, the Good Intent, People’s and June Bug Stage Lines rolled into town daily. Prancing teams of horses pulled the stagecoaches filled with the famous and common, jostled together by the rough mountain ride. Coaches and wagons were soon replaced by a canal and a railroad. Today, two interstate highways crisscross this narrowest piece of Maryland.
Sidebar An Interesting, Historic Town
With the advent of the automobile came some of our first travel guides. Robert Bruce traveled the National Road in 1916 in an effort to provide the traveler with thorough maps, good driving directions, and interesting bits of information. “Hancock is a prosperous-looking place...an interesting, historic town,” he noted. Today, his map of Hancock provides us a glimpse into the past. Note the location of the Barton House and the Monterey Hotel in the middle of town.
Erected by America's Byways.
Marker series. This marker is included in the The Historic National Road marker series.
Location. 39° 41.93′ N, 78° 10.754′ W. Marker is in Hancock, Maryland, in Washington County. Marker is on West Main Street (Maryland Route 144), on the left when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Hancock MD 21750, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Major James Breathed (here, next to this marker); Discover the Trail (here, next to this marker); A New Beginning (a few steps from this marker); a different marker also named Discover the Trail (within shouting distance of this marker); The C&O Canal: Serving the Potomac Valley (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Hancock in the Canal Era (about 300 feet away); Hancock Station (about 300 feet away); a different marker also named Hancock (about 300 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Hancock.
Categories. • Roads & Vehicles • Settlements & Settlers •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on March 3, 2008, by Christopher Busta-Peck of Shaker Heights, Ohio. This page has been viewed 1,563 times since then and 45 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on March 3, 2008, by Christopher Busta-Peck of Shaker Heights, Ohio.