Thank you for your efforts. We have no snow here in Morgan County WV
so far today (Monday 3/2) but it is very cold--16 this morning and
windy--forecast for later in the week is much better.
That is likely the cross road. I have a copy of a mid 1800's map
showing the village and that there was a road along the top of the
Catoctin Mountains probably now the Gambrill Park Rd. The map does
not show a road or roads west towards Orr's Gap (Ripley's Hamburg
Pass). Then, as now, looks like a traveller going west would take
roundabout roads to Myersville then the road to Hagerstown thru Orr's
Gap where today I70 and Rt 40 pass. All this makes it difficult to
understand how Ripley named the gap in S. Mountain "Hamburg Pass."
Another reference I found by Louis O'Donoghue says that "Hamburg is a
village, located 2.5 miles northeast of Harmony on top of Catoctin
Mountain at an elevation of 1610' possibly named for the Hamburg
family who lived in Frederick County about 1800. It was considered a
ghost town as it was never platted; foundations can still be found."
If you find the ruins of the Hamburg fire-tower perhaps the
foundations of some homes are nearby.
--- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com
, "Brian Richardson"
> Larry -
> There is a Hamburg Road that intersects Gambrill Park Road about 4
> miles north of Route 40 in the Catoctin range. Is that the
> that Paula Strain refers to? Hamburg Road runs generally southeast
> from there and joins Yellow Springs Road northwest of Frederick.
> There isn't a direct route from the Hamburg Road/Gambrill Park Road
> intersection to Hamburg Pass on South Mountain today. Weather
> permitting I'll go poke around there in the next day or two and let
> you know if I find anything.
> Best regards,
> Brian Richardson
> --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "eighth_conn_inf"
> <eighth_conn_inf@> wrote:
> > Tom,
> > Thank you for your insight. I know that since you worked with Dr.
> > Harsh that you likely knew about this relatively minor point.
> > Perhaps someone at the Frederick County HS or Washington County
> > be able to point me to something.
> > In Paula M. Strain's "The Blue Hills of Maryland" she mentions
> > Hamburg as "a ghost town on top of Catoctin Mountain near
> > State Park. It was never plotted officially but, at late as 1892,
> > several houses stood near the crossroads. Even earlier, there was
> > tavern there. Now only the ruins of the Hamburg fire-tower mark
> > village," 272.
> > She also writes about the Hagerstown-Frederick trolley which ran
> > Myersville then thru S. Mountain at "Orr's Gap" then to what was
> > called Smoketown (now Mt. Lena), 204.
> > She discusses Orr's Gap at some length (201-203) positing that
> > gap, three miles north Turner's Gap, through a sag between
> > Hill and Pine Knob, has been known by three names in the last 250
> > years: Orr's Gap, Hamburg Pass, and Trolley-Line Gap. She
> > that the Orr's Gap name faded by the time of the CW so the pass
> > unnamed (by D. H. Hill) or incorrectly named "Hamburg Pass" by
> > Ripley. But she implies that that name stuck since no one
> > it. "Ripley's assignment of the name of a village ten miles east
> > Catoctin Mountain to little Orr's Gap, has led a number of Civil
> > historians unfamiliar with Maryland to repeat his mistake, making
> > Hamburg Pass the second name Orr's has been called," 201-202.
> > She could not find any reason for the name "Orr" in land records,
> > etc., so she says that is likely why the name faded. As we know,
> > names of places by CW troops unfamiliar with the area can be
> > misleading and almost certainly by spelling. Perhaps here, Ripley
> > talked to a civilian or a soldier familiar with the area and was
> > that the road thru the gap leads to Hamburg so for
> > simply called it Hamburg Pass.
> > Based on her research, I will call it "Orr's Gap" with, of
> > footnote re Harsh, Ripley, Carman, and that the road thru there
> > led to Hamburg, among other places east.
> > Larry