The C&O Canal Trust today announced the Fifth Anniversary of the award-winning Canal Quarters program, to be celebrated on Saturday, November 8 and Sunday, November 9, 2014 with six separate free events open to the public.
Canal Quarters is a joint partnership between the C&O Canal Trust and the C&O Canal National Historical Park. It provided for the rehabilitation of historic lockhouses located along the C&O Canal. Each of the six lockhouses currently in the program were restored and furnished with authentic furnishings depicting a specific time period between 1830-1950. Each lockhouse tells a story of a period of Canal history, and guests are able to spend up to three nights in the Quarters for a nominal fee.
Lockhouse 22, located in Potomac, was the first lockhouse to host an overnight guest on November 7, 2009. Now, five years later, the Canal Quarters program encompasses are lockhouses scattered between Brookmont in the east to Clear Spring in the west. These six lockhouses have hosted a combined 9,489 guests from 37 states during 2,802 stays.
All six lockhouses will host a free open house on either Saturday, November 8 or Sunday, November 9, to mark the fifth anniversary of the Canal Quarters program. Three lockhouses will be open each day – please see the schedule below for more detail. These open houses are free to the public and will enable visitors to tour the lockhouses, learn more about the program and the history of the C&O Canal, and enjoy entertainment. Visitors can also enter a contest to win a stay in the lockhouse(s) they visit. The schedule is as follows:
Saturday, November 8, 12:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Lockhouse 22: mile marker 19.6 near Potomac.
Lockhouse Theme: 1830s-1840s, early phases of Canal construction
Open House Entertainment: A historic preservationist demonstrates 19th century building methods.
Lockhouse 25: mile marker 30.9 near Poolesville
Lockhouse Theme: 1860s, civilian life on the Canal during the Civil War
Open House Entertainment: Civilian re-enactors speak about life on the Canal during the Civil War. The Hancock Civil War String Band will also be joining in the fun and performing for guests.
Lockhouse 28: mile marker 48.9 near Point of Rocks
Lockhouse Theme: 1840s, competition between the Canal and the B&O Railroad
Open House Entertainment: Local historians will give talks about the history of the Canal and the town of Point of Rocks.
Sunday, November 9, 12:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Lockhouse 6: mile marker 5.4 near Brookmont
Lockhouse Theme: 1950s, Justice William O. Douglas’s 184.5-mile walk along the Canal
Open House Entertainment: Local musicians will play for visitors.
Lockhouse 10: mile marker 8.8 near Cabin John
Lockhouse Theme: 1930s, New Deal programs on the Canal
Open House Entertainment: Local historian and C&O Canal Trust Board Member Judy Welles will guide walking tours. Tours leave at 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m.
Lockhouse 49: 108.7 near Clear Spring.
Lockhouse Theme: 1920s, heyday of the Four Locks community
Open House Entertainment: National Park Service Ranger Kelly Fox will guide walking tours of the historic structures that made up the community of Four Locks. Tours leave at 12:30 p.m., 1:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m.
The Canal Quarters program helps save deteriorating lockhouses while still allowing the public a chance to learn from and use them. The program has become a model in the preservation community for the successful adaptive reuse of historic structures, and has won three major awards:
- 2014 Chairman’s Award for Achievement in Historic Preservation from the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation
- 2012 Maryland Preservation Award for Outstanding Stewardship of Historic Properties by a Government Agency from the Maryland Historical Trust
- 2011 Appleman-Judd Award for Excellence in Cultural Resource Stewardship from the National Park Service