The Rugged Road to Revolution

Maryland, 1781…

From September 8th until September 22nd, 1781, the combined forces of the Continental Army under the command of General George Washington and the French Expédition Particulière under the command of Lieutenant General Jean-Baptiste Donatien de Vimeur Comte de Rochambeau made their way across Maryland en route to besiege British forces entrenched in Virginia. From July 19th until August 28th, 1782, they would undertake their return trip north, victorious from the Siege of Yorktown. Along this route, soldiers stopped in Bushtown (Abingdon), Havre de Grace, Deer Creek (Darlington), Cummings Tavern (Bainbridge), Perryville, and Elkton.

“Reconstructing the Revolution-Era Cultural Landscapes of the Washington-Rochambeau Military Encampments, Cecil & Harford Counties”

Rochambeau map Courtesy of Library of Congress, Geography and Map Division

To date, only limited archaeological or architectural attention has been paid to the sites of the military encampments established during these marches across Maryland. The Maryland Historical Trust (MHT) was awarded a 2023 Preservation Planning Grant from the American Battlefield Protection Program to identify and document the understudied encampment sites and cultural resources associated with the march of American and French soldiers through Harford and Cecil Counties. This work will include historical research, archaeological survey, and architectural documentation over the next two years to develop a more complete understanding of how Maryland communities contributed to one of the most significant troop movements of the Revolutionary War.

Rochambeau map Courtesy of Library of Congress, Geography and Map Division (click map to enlarge)

We Want to Hear from You!

MHT will host two public meetings to share information about the project and seek feedback:

All are welcome to attend!

If you can’t attend the meetings, be sure to reach out to us by completing this Information Form. Community members can use this form to:

  • Report potential archaeological site information, specific to Cecil and Harford Counties
  • Provide stakeholder feedback and information
  • Volunteer for archaeological fieldwork
  • Receive updates as the project progresses

We’ll see you on the road!

Note: This page was developed with the assistance of a grant from the National Park Service, as authorized under the American Battlefield Protection Program (54 USC 308101 – 308105). Any findings, opinions, or recommendations expressed in this website are those of the author(s) and should not be interpreted to constitute the endorsement, policies, or views of the National Park Service, the American Battlefield Protection Program, or any other agency of the United States Government.

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