June 16, 2024

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Mountain Maryland Museum Week promotes heritage tourism | Community

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CUMBERLAND — Allegany County Tourism has announced the return of Mountain Maryland Museum Week, which will take place June 7-16. The 10-day annual promotion highlights the heritage tourism attractions and assets in Allegany County by partnering with museums to provide better availability and awareness of their attractions as well as offering heritage-focused special events and programming.

The Mountain Maryland region’s heritage story is steeped in America’s early transportation milestones as told in its rivers, rails, trails, mountains and towns. Pre-Industrial Revolution, the county’s topography lent itself as a natural passageway for westward exploration and migration. Home to the final stop on the C&O Canal, Mile Marker “0” for the National Road and a major crossroad for railroad connection and development, Allegany County served as an epicenter for exporting natural resources. While the early railroad mainly transported coal, ore, timber and occasional passengers, another major passageway transported people in a different way: below ground, the original Fort Cumberland tunnels provided refuge to enslaved people on their journey toward freedom just across the Mason-Dixon Line a few miles away.

“Museum Week is an opportunity to celebrate our region’s rich heritage tourism assets,” said Ashli Workman, director of tourism. “Our goal is to raise awareness for our history attractions through storytelling and honoring how history plays a role in education, economic development and inspiring travel.”

Sites to participate in the activities include Allegany Museum, C. William Gilchrist Museum of the Arts, Emmanuel Episcopal Church, Evergreen Heritage Center, Frostburg Museum, George Washington Headquarters, Gordon-Roberts House, Mountain City Traditional Arts, National Road LaVale Toll Gate House and Wills Creek Museum.

Participating museums agreed to be open at least four of the 10 days of the promotion, which spans two weekends.

Special excursions are planned along the Western Maryland Scenic Railroad. Other historical sites include the new Coal Miner’s Memorial in Frostburg, the Brownsville Monument and the Lonaconing Iron Furnace. Allegany County is also home to Passages of the Western Potomac Heritage Area and is a part of three of Maryland’s Scenic Byways, each with historical relevance.

A list of museum hours of operation and events is available at www.mdmountainside.com/museumweek.


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