Photo courtesy of Roy Sewall.
Often people recreating along the C&O Canal towpath can't resist peeking into historic lock house structures in hopes of catching a glimpse of what life was like for those living and working on the canal long ago.
The Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park invites visitors to learn more about life on the C&O Canal by spending the night in a historic lock house. Stretching from the outskirts of Georgetown in Washington D.C. to the Community of Four Locks, west of Williamsport in Western Maryland, six lock houses are available for stay along the towpath. Photos and stories, household tools and furnishings reminiscent of the canal's era convey the living conditions of a lock keeper's family as it may have been during the 1830s, at the time of the Civil War, the turn of the twentieth century, or the 1950s.
Visit the C&O Canal Trust website to learn more about the unique stories and features at each lock house or register to spend a night. Canal Quarters is a cooperative effort between the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park and the C&O Canal Trust, a not-for-profit friends group.
Canal Quartermasters are needed to help with this program. If you are interested in volunteering to care for one of these historic lock house structures please click here for more information.
Did You Know?
The Paw Paw Tunnel is 3,118 feet long and is lined with almost six million bricks. The 2/3 mile long tunnel saved the canal builders almost six miles of construction along the Paw Paw bends of the Potomac River. The project took twelve years to complete. The tunnel was only wide enough for single lane traffic.