Women's Work on the C&O Canal

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Date: March 23, 2017
Contact: Pete Peterson, 301-767-3702

Potomac, MD – On Saturday, March 25, 2017, the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park (C&O Canal) invites the public to come explore the story of women’s lives and work on the canal. The program will take place at the Great Falls Tavern in Potomac, Maryland.
Women played vital roles in the operation of the C&O Canal from its beginning in 1828 to the present. Historically, women needed to be skilled in mule care, booking, laundry, cooking, sewing, medicine, and teaching. They often found themselves as lock-tenders and boatman. The public will be encouraged to participate in the various forms of labor performed by women along the canal in the 19th century. Volunteers will demonstrate how laundry, cooking, cleaning, child rearing, and other forms of “women’s work” was done during the heyday of the C&O Canal. Come and try your hand at kneading dough, scrubbing a washboard, and mending a shirt. This event will run from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm.
This demonstration will take place at the Great Falls Tavern Visitor Center (11710 MacArthur Boulevard, Potomac, MD 20854). The event will be free of charge. There is a fee to enter the park (currently $10 per vehicle for a single visit, unless a passenger has an applicable park pass). Call ahead for details at (301) 767-3714 (press “0” to reach a park staff person, Wed.-Sun., 9:00-4:30). For more information on the C&O Canal’s programs and events, please visit www.nps.gov/choh.

Last updated: March 24, 2017

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1850 Dual Highway, Suite 100
Hagerstown, MD 21740



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