History of Deep Creek Lake
The county's most popular tourist attraction, Deep Creek Lake is a hub of activity. At 3,900 acres, Maryland's largest freshwater lake is part Mother Nature, part human ingenuity. The Youghiogheny's Hydro-Electric Corporation created the lake using the surrounding streams to generate electrical power. One-thousand men began construction on November 1, 1923, and two-and-a-half years later, in May 1925, the electric plant began operation. The lake is 75 feet at its deepest and has 65 miles of shoreline. Today, Deep Creek Lake is owned by the State of Maryland and is managed by the Department of Natural Resources, Maryland Park Service.
History of Garrett County
Bordered by Pennsylvania and West Virginia, Garrett County became, in 1872, the last Maryland county to be established, essentially becoming the end of the state's line. From the B&O Railroad Station to the Historic National Road, Garrett County offers visitors a wealth of historic experiences.
Casselman Inn/Casselman River Bridge
Cattlemen and settlers headed west in the early 19th century traveling in coaches and wagons through the wilds of Garrett County, mostly along the Historic National Road, America's first federally funded highway. In 1813, the Casselman River Bridge was built near Grantsville to expedite the journey. It was, at the time, the largest single-span stone arch bridge in the world, earning a listing on the National Register of Historic Places. Naturally, much grew up around this important juncture, including several hostelries and Stanton's Mill. Built in 1797, the mill has been restored and once again grinds meals and flours from locally grown and imported grains.
A cultural area and artisan's village, the Spruce Forest Artisan Village, occupies the parkland surrounding the bridge. And, in the tradition of the old drovers, you can grab a meal and lay your head on a pillow at the historic Casselman inn, built in 1842.
Cranesville Subarctic Swamp
Walk in the footsteps of prehistoric creatures in the 850-acre wetland along the border of West Virginia. Formed nearly 15,000 years ago, it was one of the first National Natural Landmarks to be designated by the National Park Service in 1965, and has been described as "a small piece of forest and bog that remained after the Ice Age." Now owned by the Nature Conservancy, it's not much different from that time - wild and still home to a range of plants usually found in the extreme northern areas of Alaska and Canada, the southernmost point for larch forests. A boardwalk crosses the swamp, and six trails wind through this unique tundra region. For more information, go to www.nature.org and click on Where We Work.
Small in stature, but large in history, this stone is one of the oldest markers in the United States and is located on the border between Maryland and West Virginia. Now part of a state park carrying its name, the stone played a prominent role in determining the boundary of the two states; it was here that George Washington marked the headwaters of the Potomac River. Head south on Rt. 219 until you see signs for Fairfax Stone State Park - it's about two miles off the road.
Highest Point in Maryland
With an elevation of 3,360 feet, Hoye-Crest on Backbone Mountain is the highest point in Maryland. A densely forested and serene area, this is a favorite destination for hikers, and was named for Capt. Charles Edward Hoye, founder of the Garrett County Historical Society. Situated close to the state line, the easiest access is from West Virginia's Monongahela National Forest. (Head south on Rt. 219; the sign will be on your left). Don't forget to pick up a certificate near the marker confirming that you made it to Maryland's highest point. For more information, stop at the Garrett County Visitors Center or call 301.387.4386.