Monocacy National Battlefield

Audio Available:

OVERVIEW: About this audio-described brochure

Welcome to the audio-described version of Monocacy National Battlefield's official print brochure. Through text and audio descriptions of photos, illustrations, and maps, this version interprets the two-sided color brochure that park visitors receive upon arrival or by mail. The brochure explores the history of the area and park itself, some of its highlights, and information for planning your visit. This audio version lasts about 40 minutes which we have divided into 16 sections as a way to improve the listening experience. Sections 2 through 9 cover the front side of the brochure, including an overview of the Monocacy National Battlefield and the Battle that Saved Washington. Sections 10 through 18 cover the back side of the brochure, including Monocacy National Battlefield: Then and Now, two other significant Civil War events, and how to enjoy the park today. 

Please be sure to check the park website for updated information about the park. Activities can vary by season and change from year to year. Weather can vary by season--from very hot and muggy in the summer to cold and/or rainy in the fall and winter. 

So, let's get ready to explore Monocacy National Battlefield! 

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OVERVIEW: Monocacy National Battlefield

Monocacy National Battlefield, located in Maryland, is part of the National Park Service, within the U.S. Department of the Interior. It is located 48 miles northwest of Washington, DC, and four miles south of Frederick, Maryland. Congress authorized Monocacy National Battlefield in 1934, but did not provide any funding to acquire land until 1976. The battlefield opened to the public in 1991. The battlefield commemorates and preserves the location of the July 9, 1864, Civil War battle. Visitors discover how the events and sacrifice of Union soldiers at a small railroad junction in Maryland saved Washington, DC, from a hostile invasion. Eight miles of trails in the park allow visitors to follow in the footsteps of Confederate and Union soldiers as they clashed at Monocacy Junction in the struggle over whether slavery would continue in the United States. For those seeking to learn more about the park during their visit, an audio described map of the battle can be found at the visitor's center. To find out more about what resources might be available or to contact the park directly, visit the "Accessibility" and "More Information" sections at the end of this audio-described brochure.

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OVERVIEW: Front side of brochure

The front of the brochure includes illustrations, quotes, historic photographs, and a photograph of an artifact. Most photos are black and white unless otherwise noted.

The text describes the importance of the July 9, 1864, Battle of Monocacy; the  Confederate path to Washington, DC; and the events of the battle. On the lower right is a highlight featuring the two Medals of Honor that were awarded for valor displayed during the battle.

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IMAGE and TEXT: The Battle that Saved Washington, DC

DESCRIBING: A large horizontal illustration that spans the top of the brochure, just under the NPS banner.

DESCRIPTION: An illustration of Union soldiers burning the wooden bridge over the Monocacy River during the July 9, 1864, battle.

Two Union soldiers run towards the viewer and past the body of another Union soldier who lies on the side of the dirt road with his arms and legs spread wide. The soldier in front looks back towards a two lane wooden bridge that sits on a stone pier in the middle of the river and stone bridge abutments at the edge of the river. The second soldier holds his rifle across his front at his waist as he runs. Red flames lick out from under the roof on the end of the bridge closest to the viewer. Dark black smoke pours out to the right of the image, across a clear blue sky. On the far side of the river, three Union soldiers are visible on the bank. One soldier runs towards the burning bridge. A second stands at the edge of the river looking across. A third Union soldier has his rifle raised pointed away from the viewer and a puff of white smoke is visible at the muzzle.


Union soldiers burn the wooden bridge over the Monocacy.



"From every point of view it was heroism."

—Union Gen. Lew Wallace on the defense of the Monocacy River bridges


Monocacy National Battlefield preserves the site of a Civil War battle fought on July 9, 1864, south of Frederick, Maryland, during the third and final Confederate invasion of the North. The Battle of Monocacy is less famous and smaller than the battles of Antietam and Gettysburg—during the first and second invasions—but it also proved crucial. The Battle of Monocacy delayed Confederate forces sent to capture the Nation’s Capital and ultimately forced them to withdraw to Virginia.

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IMAGES, MAP, and TEXT: Third Confederate Invasion of the North

IMAGE 1 of 2: Lieutenant General Jubal Early

DESCRIBING: A small, oval-shaped, and black-and-white portrait

DESCRIPTION: This small, oval-shaped, and black-and-white portrait shows Lt. Jubal Early, a white male, in the mid-1800s. He is a partially balding man with some hair towards the back of his forehead and on the sides of his face. His big bushy beard and mustache surround a serious look as he faces toward the viewer's right. He is wearing a dark shirt, visible only at and slightly below his neckline. He is wearing a light-colored open vest with two buttons visible and dark knotted cravat at the base of his neck. A matching coat with lapels is shown. 

CAPTION: Lieutenant General Jubal Early Early, one of Lee’s most experienced commanders, was ending his invasion of Maryland when he said, “Major, we haven’t taken Washington, but we scared Abe Lincoln like hell!”

CREDIT: Library of Congress

IMAGE 2 of 2: Major General Lew Wallace

DESCRIBING: A small, oval-shaped, and black-and-white portrait

DESCRIPTION: This small, oval-shaped, and black-and-white portrait shows Major General Lew Wallace, a white male, in the mid-1800s. He has dark slicked back hair with a very full- flowing dark mustache and long, full, trimmed beard. He has a serious look on his face as he looks toward the viewer's right. He is wearing a dark uniform with two rows of lighter-colored buttons and part of a ranking emblem visible on his right shoulder. A white shirt is visible above the uniform at his neckline. 

CAPTION: Major General Lew Wallace: Ulysses S. Grant said that Wallace’s defeat at Monocacy contributed “a greater benefit to the cause than often falls to the lot of a commander of equal force to render by means of a victory.”

CREDIT: Library of Congress

MAP: Early's Washington Raid, June - July 1864

DESCRIBING: A medium-sized and slightly more vertical than horizontal map

DESCRIPTION: The purpose of this multi-colored map is to show the route of Jubal Early's raid on Washington, DC from June to July 1864. The map shows Lynchburg and Petersburg, Virginia, to the south and the edge of Pennsylvania to the north. West Virginia is shown on the western side of the map. The right side of the map shows the Potomac River and James River flowing into the Chesapeake Bay. 

A red line outlines Early's route starting in Richmond and passing through Charlottesville, Lynchburg, Buchanan, Lexington, Staunton, Mount Sidney, Mount Jackson, Strasburg, and Winchester, Virginia. From there, the group traveled to Harpers Ferry and Shepherdstown, WV, then to Frederick and Rockville, Maryland, with the Battle of Monocacy along the way. The final stop is Fort Stevens in Washington, DC. 


By mid-1864 the tide of war had turned against the Confederacy. In the West its army was being beaten back toward Atlanta, Georgia. In the East, Gen. Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia was forced to establish battle lines around Richmond and Petersburg, Virginia. To bolster Union forces besieging the cities, Lt. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant removed thousands of troops from the defensive ring of forts around Washington, DC, leaving the city lightly defended and a tempting target.

To relieve pressure on his beleaguered army, Lee sent 15,000 troops under Lt. Gen. Jubal Early to secure the Shenandoah Valley and then invade Maryland. Lee hoped to force Grant to divert troops to protect the North by threatening—and possibly capturing—Washington. Early headed west to the Shenandoah Valley, then swept north into Maryland. His goal was to threaten or capture the Nation’s Capital. Lee also hoped that this third invasion of the war-weary North would further erode public support for the war there.

Early’s army reached Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, on July 4. Crossing the Potomac River near Sharpsburg, Maryland, they headed east toward Frederick and the road to Washington. Seeing their movements, railroad agents alerted Baltimore and Ohio Railroad President John W. Garrett, who notified Maj. Gen. Lew Wallace, the Union commander in Baltimore. Wallace quickly assembled 3,200 troops, mostly new or short-term recruits without experience.

Unsure of Early’s strength or whether the Confederates were headed to Baltimore or Washington, Wallace rushed his troops by railroad to Monocacy Junction, an important trade and transportation center. There, the Georgetown Pike to Washington and the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad crossed the Monocacy, as did the nearby National Road to Baltimore. Guarding the three bridges and several fords, Wallace hoped to delay Early until Washington could be reinforced.

By dawn on July 9, the last of the 3,400 Union veterans that Grant had sent reached Monocacy Junction, more than doubling Wallace’s force to 6,600. Early’s army—in Frederick now—still outnumbered Wallace more than two to one, although Early had sent some cavalry to raid the Union prison at Point Lookout and free the thousands of Confederates held there.

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IMAGE and TEXT: The Armies Clash at Monocacy

DESCRIBING: A large horizontal illustration. 

DESCRIPTION: An illustration depicting Confederate soldiers firing three brass cannons in a wheat field. The point of view is from slightly behind and to the left of the first cannon. Black smoke rises in the distance from the left of the image in the clear blue sky. 

Three cannons are arranged in a row that moves off to distance on the upper right of the image. White smoke obscures the second cannon and its crew. The third cannon disappears off the edge of the image. A crew of five men surround each cannon. Each man performs a specific task. On the first cannon, from left to right: soldier number one uses a long pole with a sponge on the end to clean out the barrel of the cannon, a black metal bucket is visible at his feet. Soldier number two stands by the wheel closest to the viewer, facing the viewer with his back to the cannon. He looks over his left shoulder beyond the rear of the gun. Soldier number three stands at the back end of the barrel with his left hand pressing down over the vent of the gun. Soldier number four leans down and looks down the sites of the gun and adjusts the height of the gun with a large screw under the butt of the barrel. The fifth soldier stands several feet behind the gun watching the other men.

The cannon are all 12-pound Napoleon models. The brass barrel of the gun is six feet seven inches long. At the rear of the barrel is a small knob. The circumference of the barrel tapers as it moves forward to the mouth of the barrel in front. The brass barrel sits on a wooden carriage with two five-foot diameter wheels with wood spokes, one on each side of the barrel. A long wooden stock slopes away from the barrel with its tail resting on the ground. It extends six feet beyond the rear of the barrel.

CAPTION: Confederate artillery on the Best Farm fires on Union troops at the Battle of Monocacy, July 9, 1864.


RELATED TEXT: Wallace determined that Early was headed toward Washington. He concentrated his veterans on the east side of the river at Monocacy Junction, where the road to Washington crossed. He also placed a line of skirmishers along the railroad tracks on the west side. On the morning of July 9, advancing Confederates attacked Union troops defending the Monocacy River bridges.

The Confederates brought up artillery and heavy fighting ensued around the Best Farm as they tested the Union defense. Early decided a direct frontal assault would be too costly. Instead, his cavalry found a place downstream to ford the river and attack the Union left flank. Alerted to the movement, Wallace shifted troops onto the Thomas Farm to meet the assault.

Early’s cavalry crossed the river at the Worthington Ford, dismounted, formed ranks, and advanced across the Worthington Farm fields. Instead of springing a surprise attack, they marched into a line of soldiers concealed along a fence on the Thomas Farm. Union rifle fire raked the Confederates, forcing them to fall back.

Meanwhile, Wallace ordered his men to burn the wooden covered bridge on the Georgetown Pike to keep Confederates on his right from storming across the river. By doing so, he also cut off the best route of retreat for his skirmishers, still stubbornly holding their ground near the junction. Wallace bolstered his left flank and shifted more troops to the Thomas Farm, preparing for a second Confederate assault.

A mid-afternoon Confederate cavalry attack pushed the Union soldiers back and captured the Thomas House. Then a Union counterattack recaptured the house. On the Worthington Farm, a full Confederate division forded the river in late afternoon and launched a three-pronged assault against the Union line.

The day’s heaviest fighting raged across the wheat and corn fields of the Thomas Farm, as the Confederates again pushed the Union soldiers back. At the junction they also dislodged the Union skirmishers and forced them to flee under fire across the railroad bridge.

Wallace could hold his position no longer. He ordered what was left of his small army to fall back past Gambrill Mill and retreat toward Baltimore. He left behind some 1,300 men—dead, wounded, missing, or captured.

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IMAGES and TEXT: Monocacy and the Medal of Honor

IMAGE 1 of 3

DESCRIBING: A small, oval-shaped, and black-and-white portrait

DESCRIPTION: This small, oval-shaped, and black-and-white portrait features the bust of a white male, possibly at or around age 20 in the mid to late 1800s, facing to the viewer's right with a serious look on his face. He appears to have medium-colored hair whisked back from his temples. He is wearing a dark uniform with two buttons visible in a single row in the front of it and a light-colored shirt peeking out near his neck. 

CAPTION: Lt. George E. Davis


IMAGE 2 of 3

DESCRIBING: A small, oval-shaped, and black-and-white portrait

DESCRIPTION: This small, oval-shaped, and black-and-white portrait highlights the bust of a middle-aged balding white man in the mid to late 1800s, with a serious expression on his face. His hair is combed over the back part of his head and trimmed on the sides. He is wearing a medium-colored suit with a rectangular but slightly oval pin on his lapel on the viewer's right. A white shirt collar sticks out around his neck, and a wide tie with a decorative dot in the center of the loop sits just below his neck. A big bushy mustache frames his lip as he peers to the viewer's left, toward the portrait described above of Lt. George E. Davis. 

CAPTION: Corp. Alexander Scott


IMAGE 3 of 3

DESCRIBING: A small, cut-out image of the Medal of Honor

DESCRIPTION: This small, cut-out image highlights the Medal of Honor--the original version designed in the mid-1800s. The medal features a decorative scrolled bronze bar from below which hangs a multi-colored ribbon. The ribbon has two rectangular sections, one above the other. The top rectangle is a swath of royal blue, while the rectangular section below shows alternating vertical stripes of red and blue. Under the ribbon, there is a bronze eagle perched on a cannon, grasping a saber in its talons, sitting in the bronze "V" of a five-point star below. In the center of the star, there is a circular design with two figures in it surrounded by braided rope. One figure is standing with what appears to be a shield. The other figure is half-bent, right leg forward, turned back to look at the other figure with the shield while protecting itself with a saber. 

CAPTION: Historic Medal of Honor



The Medal of Honor is the highest decoration for valor awarded by the US government. It was awarded twice at the Battle of Monocacy, both times to members of the 10th Regiment of Vermont Volunteers: Lt. George E. Davis, for defending the two bridge approaches at Monocacy Junction against the repeated assaults by a larger force; and Corp. Alexander Scott, for saving the regiment’s national flag from capture.

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TEXT: Significance of the Battle


The exhausted Confederates encamped on the battlefield that night before resuming their march toward Washington. The battle had cost them as many as 900 men killed, wounded, missing, or captured, as well as a precious day of time. On July 11, two days after the Battle of Monocacy, Early’s army reached Fort Stevens in northwest Washington. By the time his army arrived, the two divisions Grant rushed to Washington from Petersburg were moving into Fort Stevens and other city defenses.

Early’s and Grant’s troops battled on July 12, with President Lincoln watching the action, but any opportunity to capture the city had been lost. The Confederate cavalry sent to liberate prisoners at Point Lookout was recalled before they could reach their destination, and on July 12, under the cover of darkness, Early started to withdraw his army back into Virginia, ending the last Confederate invasion of the North.

At Monocacy, Wallace’s small improvised army had held its ground against repeated assaults by a much larger, battle-hardened Confederate force, delaying their advance for one critical day. His troops had lost the battle, but they had saved Washington.

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MAP: Monocacy battle, from above

DESCRIBING: A large, horizontal illustration that shows the battlefield from high in the air, as if looking down from mountaintop.

DESCRIPTION: An illustration that shows the patchwork of green and tan fields and farms that comprise the battlefield. At the top of the image, the Catoctin Mountain range rises in the distance on other side of the valley. The Monocacy River snakes its way across the middle of the image. Puffs of white smoke betray the positions of soldiers across the battlefield.

Moving from the bottom of the image to the top, the bottom third of the image  in the center foreground are green fields. White lettering below a cluster of trees and brick house in the center of the fields reveal it is the Thomas Farm. On the right side of the farm, several rows of soldiers are revealed  by the white smoke of their weapons. At the far lower right of the image, across a road from the Thomas Farm is a green area labeled Gambrill Mill.

Above the Thomas Farm in the center of the image a cluster of trees and a house are surrounded by light green and tan fields. They are labeled Worthington Farm. White smoke wafts away from the house revealing a location of soldiers. At the upper edge of the Worthington Farm a blue line of the Monocacy River undulates across the page. At the far right of image along the Monocacy river are two labels: the first says Wooden bridge and a little farther to the right at the edge of the image it says Railroad bridge. Near the wooden bridge and extending up a road, white smoke indicates that heavy fighting is occurring. Beyond the railroad bridge, the river makes a sharp turn and heads up towards the upper right corner of the image and out of view.

Above the river in the center of the image is a patchwork of tan and green fields. A cluster of trees and a white house in the center of one of the fields is labeled Best Farm. A large plume of smoke rises near the farmhouse, revealing the location of more soldiers.

At the top of the image, in the distance, below the mountains is a cluster of buildings labeled Frederick.


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OVERVIEW: Back side of brochure

The back of the brochure highlights two other significant Civil War events that occurred at the battlefield and how to tour the battlefield today. It includes text, images, a quote, and maps. Highlights include trails and an auto tour. 

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TEXT: Monocacy Battlefield Then and Now

This is a text-label only, describing the content on the back of the brochure. It spans the top of the back of the brochure, with white text on a black background.

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IMAGES and TEXT: Two other significant Civil War events

IMAGE 1 of 2

DESCRIBING: A medium-sized cutout image that shows a handwritten piece of paper. 

DESCRIPTION: This medium-sized cutout image shows a handwritten piece of paper from 1862 containing Robert E. Lee's Special Orders No. 191. This unassuming piece of antique yellow paper with almost unintelligible black cursive writing held the keys to how to defeat the Confederate Army in the Civil War. The orders specified the planned movements of Lee's army for the following three days (September 10-12), splitting Lee's army, and explaining each assignment. For example, Major General Jackson, with three divisions, was to lead the advance through Middletown, Maryland, on to Sharpsburg, Maryland, and across the Potomac. There he was to take control of the B&O Railroad, capture the Federal garrison at Martinsburg, Virginia, then move toward Harpers Ferry, Virginia. 

CAPTION: Lee’s Lost Orders: When General McClellan received this copy of Lee’s Special Orders No. 191, addressed to Gen. D.H. Hill, he exclaimed, “Here is a paper with which, if I cannot whip Bobby Lee, I will be willing to go home.”

CREDIT: McClellan Papers Library of Congress

IMAGE 2 of 2

DESCRIBING: A small cutout image of a canteen spout. 

DESCRIPTION: A small cutout image shows a canteen spout from the Civil War. The spout is black with additional black coating providing an extra lip or mouthpiece at the top. The owner likely did not want to lose this item, as the letters A, R, and T are scratched into it. 

CAPTION: Both Union and Confederate armies camped in the area before and after the battle. They left many items, including this inscribed canteen spout. Lt. Ambrose B. Hart of the 128th New York Infantry lost the spout while encamped on the Best Farm in 1864. See more artifacts like this at the visitor center.

CREDIT: McClellan Papers Library of Congress


Two Other Significant Civil War Events took place on the Monocacy battlefield before and after the battle: 

On September 13, 1862, Union soldiers made a surprising find—they discovered an envelope containing two cigars and a copy of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee’s Special Orders No. 191. The orders, detailing movements of the Confederate army September 10–12, were written a few days before as the army was camped at the Best Farm. This information enabled Union Gen. George B. McClellan to determine Lee’s movements and intentions, and to move his army quicker and with more confidence. His clash with Lee at Antietam on September 17, the bloodiest day of the war, ended in a draw—a missed opportunity to destroy the Confederate army. A historical marker on the Monocacy battlefield identifies the site of Lee’s headquarters, where he prepared Special Orders No. 191.

On August 5, 1864, Union Lt. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant met with several of his generals in an upper room at the Thomas House (known as “Araby”) to devise a plan to drive Lt. Gen. Jubal Early’s army from the Shenandoah Valley and then systematically lay waste to this “breadbasket of the Confederacy,” therefore denying Lee’s army a dependable source of food and forage. The next day he placed Gen. Philip Sheridan in command of the Union army in the valley. Sheridan’s assignment: destroy Early’s forces and render the valley so desolate that “even a crow flying over the place would have to take his rations with him.”

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IMAGES and QUOTE: Touring the battlefield

IMAGE 1 of 2

DESCRIBING: A large vertical image that shows the Worthington House and its expansive lawn, with that grass providing a backdrop for the bottom half of the brochure and its images, text, and maps.

DESCRIPTION: A color photograph of the Worthington House, an original structure on the battlefield.

In the center of the image sits a two-story red brick house with a roofed porch extending across its front. The white porch is supported by brick pillars that raise it several feet off the ground. A set of white steps with railings on each side extend from the porch to the ground. The stairs lead up to a white door in the center of the front of the house. Six white columns support the roof of the porch that attaches to the house just below the windows of the second floor. The shadow of the porch makes it difficult to clearly see windows on the sides of the door. The second floor has five windows evenly spaced across the front with the centered window above the door on the first floor. The windows have dark green shutters. The shutters on the second and fourth windows are closed. The gray roof slopes up away from the tops of the windows. The top of a brick chimney peaks above the far end of the roof.

To the left of the house is a stand of trees with dark green leaves. To the right of the house is a single tree. Its leaves form a large green mass that is almost as wide as the house. The sky is hazy in the background.

CAPTION: Built in 1851, this house exemplifies the Federal-style residence found on many prosperous farms in the area. The Worthington family took shelter in the cellar during the fighting. Six-year-old Glenn Worthington witnessed the fighting through a boarded-up window and later wrote a book, "Fighting for Time," encouraging Congress to establish a “National Military Park at the Battlefield of Monocacy, Maryland.”


IMAGE 2 of 2

DESCRIBING: A small horizontal photograph of the Worthington Ford.

DESCRIPTION: A rectangular, color photograph of the Monocacy River. Green leaves frame the image on the sides and top. The smooth surface of the river extends from the bottom of the image to halfway up the image where the river meets the heavily forested, far bank. The trees on the far bank are reflected in the gray-green water of the river. The sky is white above the tree line.

CAPTION: Here at the Worthington Ford, Confederate cavalry crossed the Monocacy to attack the Union left flank on the Thomas Farm. You can see the ford from the Ford Loop Trail.



"Every man tried to do his best against great odds."

—Lt. M.J. Stearns, 106th New York Infantry

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MAP: Self-guided auto tour map

DESCRIBING: This large and detailed map, with its accompanying text, covers about half of the back of the brochure.

DESCRIPTION: This large and detailed self-guided auto tour map, with its accompanying text, covers about half of the back of the brochure. It highlights the auto tour in juxtaposition to other park features, including a walking trail, wheelchair accessible trail, paved auto tour, unpaved auto tour, unpaved road, monuments, auto tour stops, and wheelchair accessible spaces. Parking, including wheelchair accessible spaces, can be found at the visitor center.

The map is multicolored with several symbols. On the map, parkland is denoted in light green color. Walking trails are denoted in a dashed black line. Wheelchair accessible trails are denoted in a red dashed lines. Auto tours that are on paved roads can be found in blue solid lines. Auto tours that are unpaved are found in blue dashed lines. Unpaved roads are denoted in gray solid lines. Monuments are denoted by small dark red triangles. Auto tour stops are highlighted in small blue circles with white numbers inside of them. Water is denoted in a lighter blue.Wheelchair accessible spaces can be found in symbols with a black box, with slightly rounded edges and a white wheelchair icon in the middle. Parking areas are denoted with a white letter "P" inside of a black box.

Highway 270 and Highway 355 (Urbana Pike) cross diagonally from the north to northwest portion of the map to the south to southwest portion of the map. These two roads provide the best access to Monocacy National Battlefield, which is located in the southeast part of Frederick, Maryland. The visitor center is located off of Urbana Pike (the northeastern park of the park). Parking, including handicapped spaces, is located next to the visitor center.


The self-guiding auto tour begins at the visitor center and covers about six miles.

1 Best Farm

Turn left on 355. Take the first right.

As Early’s troops advanced south toward Washington on the morning of July 9, 1864, along the Georgetown Pike (now MD 355), they met stiff resistance from Union skirmishers waiting at Monocacy Junction a half mile away. The Confederates set up artillery at the Best Farm and opened fire on the junction. Union artillery across the river responded, igniting a fire in the Best barn.

2 14th New Jersey Monument (currently closed)

Turn right on 355.

About 350 soldiers guarded Monocacy Junction, where two B&O Railroad tracks converged and an iron railroad bridge and wooden covered bridge crossed the Monocacy River. As the battle unfolded, these skirmishers faced the main Confederate line. The main Union line lay across the river behind them.

Early decided to redirect his attack downstream rather than risk a direct frontal assault against the well-positioned Federals. Later in the morning, Wallace shifted most of his force to the left to counter that move and ordered the covered bridge burned in case the Confederates broke through the skirmish line. Although the burning bridge cut off their best avenue of retreat, the Union skirmishers held their ground throughout the day. They repulsed a second attack before a third and final assault forced them to flee across the railroad bridge.

3 Worthington Farm

Turn right on 355. Take the first right on Araby Church Road. Turn right on Baker Valley Road. Proceed under the I-270 overpass. Make an immediate right on the Worthington Farm lane. Confederate cavalry crossed the Monocacy in mid-morning at the Worthington Ford, then dismounted and formed for attack on the fields behind the Worthington House. As they marched toward the Thomas Farm, they ran into a well-concealed Union line positioned behind a fence. The Federals opened fire, driving the Confederates back. The Confederates launched a second attack and took the Thomas House. The outflanked Federals fell back, attacked, and drove the Confederates back to the Worthington Farm.

4 Thomas Farm

Turn left on Baker Valley Road. Take the first left.

Caught between the two armies, the Thomas House became the focal point of the battle, as Confederates on the Worthington Farm and Federals on the Thomas Farm faced off in the most furious fighting of the day. Confederate artillery pummeled the house with shells to drive off the Union sharpshooters. Throughout the afternoon, the house was captured and recaptured as the battle line moved back and forth across the Thomas Farm.

Late in the day, a division of Confederate infantry, supported by a battery of artillery at the Worthington House, attacked and drove the Federals from the field. Wallace’s force fell back past Gambrill Mill and retreated toward Baltimore. The Confederates had won the battle, but they had lost a precious day in their advance on Washington.

5 Gambrill Mill

Turn left on Baker Valley Road. Turn left on Araby Church Road. At the stop sign proceed straight across 355.

Built in 1830, Gambrill Mill was run by an interior undershot water wheel. The mill could produce 60 barrels of flour a day and kept two coopers busy producing barrels for its products. During the battle Union troops used the mill as a field hospital. Wallace later noted, “The place appeared well selected for the purpose, its one inconvenience being that it was under fire.”

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MAP: Monocacy National Battlefield vicinity

DESCRIBING: A small and roughly square map that shows the battlefield and its surrounding areas

DESCRIPTION: This is a three-inch square map that shows the position of Monocacy National Battlefield in relation to major roads and cities. It is intended to aid a tourist visiting the park. The scale is one inch equals two miles. North is the top of the map. 

At the top center of the map is "To Gettysburg."  On the east side of the map in the northeast corner it says "To Baltimore." Below in the southeast corner is a gold dot labeled "Urbana" and underneath it "To Washington, DC." On the west side of the map it says "To Harpers Ferry" in the center and above in the northwest corner "To Hagerstown."

The background of the map is cream colored. A gold, uneven, hook-shaped area at the top of the map shows the boundaries of Frederick. In the center of the map, a green oval the size of a nickel with uneven edges shows the area of Monocacy National Battlefield. A dark green box with an arrow that points to the top of the battlefield and is labeled Visitor Center. Red and black lines depicting major roadways run from top to bottom and side to side across the map. They meet in a rough circle at the top of the map in Frederick.

A dark red line labeled Interstate 270 runs from the southeast corner through the battlefield to Frederick. Parallel to Interstate 270 is a black line labeled 355; it also bisects the battlefield. At the top of the map running from the east to the northwest corner, through Frederick, a red line labeled Interstate 70 parallels and crosses over a black line labeled US Route 40. On the west side of the map in the center a red line labeled US Routes 15 and 350 runs diagonally to the top center of the map.

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TEXT: Enjoy Monocacy Battlefield's trails and auto tour


Hours and Admission

The battlefield is open from 7:30 am to 20 minutes after sunset. The visitor center is open 9 am to 5 pm daily; closed Thanksgiving, December 25, and January 1. Check website for other closures. Admission is free.

Visitor Center

The visitor center has interpretive exhibits and a museum store. Water and restrooms are only available at the visitor center. Begin the self-guiding auto tour here.

Safety and Regulations

Railroad tracks, agricultural fields, private property, and designated administrative areas are not open to the public. Please be respectful.

Stay on marked trails. Beware of wildlife and poisonous plants.

The following are prohibited: bicycles on trails, relic hunting, pets off leash, metal detectors, littering, hunting or harassing wildlife, possession of cultural resources (bottles, ceramics, etc.) or natural resources (flowers, rocks, etc.).

For firearms regulations check the park website.

Emergencies call 911 or NPS at 866-677-6677

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OVERVIEW: Accessibility


We strive to make our facilities, services, and programs accessible to all.  Audio described videos of the driving tour stops are available on the park website. Tactile exhibits and maps are available seasonally at the Tenant House on the Thomas Farm. A narrated map of the battle is available year-round at the visitor center. The half-mile Gambrill Mill Boardwalk is wheelchair accessible.

For more information go to the visitor center, ask a ranger, call, or check our website:

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OVERVIEW: More information

More Information

Address: Monocacy National Battlefield 

4632 Araby Church Rd. Frederick, MD 21704

Phone: 301-662-3515



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Monocacy National Battlefield is one of over 400 parks in the National Park System. Learn more about national parks at

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