Deer Park, page 3
why "Deer Park" was given its name has not come down to us. Very likely it was a purely fanciful one, as were many of the names given to similar surveys in those days. The Maryland Journal of October 6, 1789 had the following advertisement:— "Notice is hereby given that the subscribers intend applying to the next General Assembly for to confirm unto them a tract of land, called Deer Park, lying in Washington County, according to the field notes and actual survey of the same." The subscribers were Daniel Jenifer, George Scott and John Swan. The latter no doubt was the General John Swan after whom the town of Swanton later was named. At any rate, the village that began to take form with the coming of the Iron Horse to the glade country in 1851 was given the name "Deer Park."
Three forces may be said to have contributed primarily to the founding and continuation of the little town. Besides the Baltimore and Ohio they were, in the order of their coming, Senator Davis and his lumber operations and associated activities, and the Deer Park Hotel. Of these three, the only one now left is the railroad. Apparently there were not more than three or four houses at what is now Deer Park when the railroad arrived, and for several years thereafter. Very shortly after 1851, however, the Droege family arrived from Germany via Baltimore and erected the imposing brick dwelling that still stands a short distance from the station. This house was badly damaged by fire some years later, but was rebuilt promptly. The original walls were not badly damaged and remain as they were when first erected, except for the gable ends, where bricks of a different color indicate the extent of the repairs.
The Jankey house stood along the railroad at No. 47 Cut just east of Deer Park. It burned one winter night about the year 1908. At the western edge of what later became the Davis lawn stood a small house, probably the home of a trackman. A Baltimore and Ohio "Company House" stood on the bank just south of the Elkins cottage, beside the railroad. This was occupied by Tom Shaw, foreman in charge of the Deer Park section of railroad, when it burned one day about the year 1874. Lawrence Stanton lived here in 1861 when employed as section foreman. Foreman Cogley also occupied the house for some time during that period. In a small house by a spring long since covered over, just north of the site of the hotel station, lived Michael Madigan, whose son Michael* was born there in March, 1865. Thus the son, who still lives at Deer Park, is by a wide margin the town's oldest resident, having spent all of his 90 years within a mile of his birthplace. The little Madigan house was razed when the hotel was built.
The railroad station at Deer Park seems to date from 1860. At
* Michael Madigan died after this article was written.
Robert Browning Garrett
Ruth Enlow Library, Oakland
22 x 15 cms
Western Maryland, 1750-1963