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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Middle River in Baltimore County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Gunpowder River

So Called as early as 1600

 
 
Gunpowder River So Called as Early as 1600 Marker image. Click for full size.
By William Pfingsten, August 19, 2007
1. Gunpowder River So Called as Early as 1600 Marker
Inscription. Legend relates that the name originated with an Indian attempt to plant gunpowder in the hope that a crop could be raised.

Big Gunpowder Falls flows through Baltimore County, joins the Little Gunpowder Falls at Dayís Island to form Gunpowder River. The River empties into the Chesapeake Bay at Carroll Island.
 
Erected 1968 by Baltimore County Historical Society.
 
Location. 39° 21.863′ N, 76° 20.461′ W. Marker is in Middle River, Maryland, in Baltimore County. Marker can be reached from Grace's Quarter Road. Touch for map. Marker is in front of the bath house at Gunpowder Falls State Park. Marker is in this post office area: Middle River MD 21220, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Gilmor's Raid (approx. 2.2 miles away); Rumsey Mansion (approx. 3 miles away); Joppa Town (approx. 3.1 miles away); Union of Brother and Sisters of Fordís Asbury Lodge No. 1 (approx. 4.9 miles away); “Whitemarsh” (approx. 4.9 miles away); “Long Calm” (approx. 4.9 miles away); Camp Chapel (approx. 6.1 miles away); Harry Dorsey Gough (approx. 6.2 miles away).
 
Categories. Colonial EraNative AmericansNatural FeaturesWaterways & Vessels
 
Gunpowder River Marker image. Click for full size.
By Claire Carton, circa May 1, 2017
2. Gunpowder River Marker
I have to say this is the most explicitly racist marker I have encountered thus far in Maryland. There isn't a date for the marker but based on style and material I want to guess 1930s to 1950s. I intend to research both the marker and "legend" and will update if I find anything. Note: as an amateur local historian one thing I have found odd is the virtual absence of native tribes in the Baltimore city and county region in the colonial era. This is evidenced both by contemporary accounts and toponomy. It doubles my skepticism about the marker's veracity even as folklore.
Gunpowder River on a Rainy Day image. Click for full size.
By William Pfingsten, August 19, 2007
3. Gunpowder River on a Rainy Day
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on May 10, 2017. This page originally submitted on August 19, 2007, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. This page has been viewed 3,149 times since then and 70 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on August 19, 2007, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland.   2. submitted on May 10, 2017, by Claire Carton of Baltimore, Maryland.   3. submitted on August 19, 2007, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. • J. J. Prats was the editor who published this page.
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