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Allegany County
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Photographs and Prints
Lock 38 area ( more details)

Lock 38 area Click on the MEDIA ITEMS below for more information


This photograph must have been taken at some point after the 1889 flood as it shows only the piers for the second vehicle bridge that had been built in 1871 to replace the first bridge that had been destroyed in the Civil War. That bridge would be replaced with a third bridge that would survive until the 1936 flood. Largest of all floods in the Potomac Valley to date, the 1936 flood also took out the lockhouse seen here between the towpath and the river. The 1936 flood not only destroyed this lockhouse, but also the adjacent buildings and all the canal buildings between here and Dam 4 as well as doing extensive damage to other parts of the canal (no longer in use).


G. D. Bast

Public domain

Mile 72.8
NPS File 951
A lock is a chamber used to lift or drop water levels in order for a boat to move across elevation levels. There are 74 lift locks that rise 605 ft from Georgetown to Cumberland. The locks were tended by lockkeepers that would operate the locks for the canal boats that would arrive at any time of the day on their way either to Georgetown or Cumberland. Materials used to build the locks ranged from Aquia Creek Freestone, Granite, and Seneca stone to wood and cement on the upper composite locks. The locks would also be a place for canallers to trade or buy supplies that they would need for their long journeys.


Collection Location:
C&O National Historic Park

Chesapeake and Ohio Canal (Md.); Washington County (Md.), History

Maryland, 1824-1938

Western Maryland Regional Library
100 South Potomac Street
Hagerstown, Maryland 21740

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