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Allegany County
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Photographs and Prints
Child on canal boat ( more details)

Click on the MEDIA ITEMS below for more information


The number of boats floating in the background of the picture, along with the landscape in the distance, indicates that this photograph was taken in Cumberland.

It almost looks cruel to modern eyes to have small children chained to the deck of a boat but for boating families this was for safety. Accidents involving children, especially falling into the canal, were common and this simple precaution probably saved many children from drowning. In 1921, 41 families were part of a study of the work of children on the C&O Canal. Of the numerous children within the 41 families studied, 45 children had fallen into the canal at least once.


E. B. Thompson

Public domain

Thompson 66

See also Mary Schroeder

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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