Roulette Farmstead

The Roulette Farmstead is located about one-half mile north of the town of Sharpsburg in Washington County, Maryland. The landscape consists of the entire 179.5 acre William Roulette Farmstead property as it existed at the time of the Battle of Antietam (Sharpsburg), which occurred on September 17, 1862.

The property continues to be farmed today through the National Park Service’s agricultural lease program. Visitors to Antietam National Battlefield can visualize the landscape essentially as it existed at the time of the Battle. Roulette Farmstead: Cultural Landscapes Inventory, NPS, 2004

Historic images of a farmhouse and landscape, with several trees and a marshy area to the left.
Historic photo of Roulette Farm taken several days after the Battle of Antietam.

Alexander Gardner/Antietam National Park Archives, in the Roulette Farmstead Cultural Landscape Inventory report

The property, located within the boundaries of the Antietam National Battlefield, was acquired by the National Park Service from a private landowner in 1998. Antietam National Battlefield was established in 1890. It came under the administration of the War Department from 1894 until 1933, when it was transferred to the National Park Service (Department of the Interior).

The Roulette Farmstead is a component cultural landscape of the larger battlefield cultural landscape at Antietam. The historic significance of the Roulette Farmstead is associated with three distinct areas and periods of history. Primarily, it is associated with military history during the period 1861-1865, due to its involvement with the Civil War Battle of Antietam.

The roofs of buildings seen beyond a swatch of bright green grass, showing the rolling terrain.
Domestic outbuildings on the Roulette Farmstead, 2003

Roulette Farmstead: Cultural Landscapes Inventory, NPS, 2004

The property is also important to conservation history for early Civil War battlefield preservation efforts (1890-1933) and the numerous monuments, markers, and tour roads that it produced. 

Finally, the Roulette Farmstead is significant in agricultural history and possesses a high level of integrity as an intact, late eighteenth-/early nineteenth-century agricultural landscape (1761-1861). Its condition is largely due to battlefield preservation efforts aimed at preserving the rural landscape as it existed on the eve of the battle.

Quick Facts

  • Cultural Landscape Type: Vernacular
  • National Register Significance Level: National
  • National Register Significance Criteria: A
  • Period of Significance: 1761-1933

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Last updated: May 23, 2019