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Centennial Times - September 26, 1862 -- County devastated by battle

Click on the MEDIA ITEMS below for more information


September 26, 1862

County Is Devastated By Battle

THE DESTRUCTION OF PROPERTY — The beautiful district of country over which the great battle of Wednesday raged presents a melancholy picture of devastation.
A number of houses and barns were destroyed, fences scattered as if a tornado had swept them away, hundreds of acres of corn trampled down and devoured, and wreck, ruin and desolation meet the eye at every turn. We have hitherto read of and contemplated the ravages of war at a distance, but, alas! a large portion of our fertile country has fallen a victim to them, and we now see and feel them in all their intensity.

We have been unable to obtain a list of the sufferers, but understand that among the heaviest is our old friend, Samuel Mumma, Esq., whose house and barn were burnt together with all their contents. They were between the fire of the two armies, and were ignited by shells. We learn that Mr. M. lost all his household furniture, including the wardrobe of his family, and all his grain, hay and farming implements.

His neighbor, William Rulett, Esq., one of our County Commissioners, also lost his horses, cattle and other property. He was in his house when the battle raged around it, and was obliged to seek refuge in his cellar. There he remained until the Federal troops drove the Rebels back, and afforded him an opportunity to escape.

The barns of Samuel and Henry Reel were also destroyed by fire and much other property.

We understand that a majority of the houses in Sharpsburg as well as those along the whole line of battle from thence to Keedysville exhibit marks of having been under fire. Some were penetrated in three or four different places by shot and shell, and in many instances their inmates made narrow escapes from destruction. The loss of personal property — horses, cattle, hogs, sheep, corn, hay and other provender, was enormous.

The whole lower portion of our county has been stripped of every description of subsistence, and what our people in that section of the county will do to obtain provender for man and beast during the approaching winter, God alone knows.

A VAST HOSPITAL. From Hagerstown to the southern limits of Washington County, wounded and dying soldiers are to be found in every neighborhood and nearly every house.
The whole region of country between Boonsboro and Sharpsburg is one vast Hospital. Houses and barns are filled with them, and nearly the whole population is engaged in waiting on and ministering to their wants.

In this town, the Washington House, Lyceum Hall and Comity Hall have been appropriated to the use of the wounded, and our citizens, especially the ladies, are untiring in their efforts to relieve them.
(Herald and Torch)

One body, near “Bloody Lane”, found hanging across a fence, had been hit by 57 bullets. Other charred corpses were found under haystacks, which had been ignited by artillery fire, where wounded men had presumably crawled for refuge and been unable to crawl back out.


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Used with permission of the Herald-Mail


Collection Location:
Hagerstown, Maryland

Original Size:
59 x 33 cms

Washington County (Md.), history; Antietam, Battle of, Md., 1862; Sharpsburg, Battle of, Md., 1862; Centennial celebrations, etc:

Washington County (Md.), 1860-1862

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

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