Other Germantown Historic Sites

Those marked with * are NOT open to the public. Those with an HPC# are County Historic Sites. 
Ballincara site, Liberty Heights Lane.  Ballincara was a mansion built by Andrew Baker in the 1880s. Andrew Baker's daughter, Sophie Baker, started a Catholic group for the blacks who lived in the area. This was called St. Rita's Group and it met in the cider house in the 1930s and 40s. The entire area around the mansion was made into a garden. The three spinster sisters Sophie, Annie and Louise, lived in the house after their father's death. There were exotic trees and shrubs, flowers arranged in formal style, ponds and a swimming pool. Andrew had an insurance company in Washington. 
Baptist Church site and cemetery (1864) 17640 Riffleford Rd. A small log church with clapboard siding was built here in 1864. It had an upstairs gallery for blacks. Before this time the Baptists in Germantown met at a church in Darnestown. 
Blackrock Log House (c1890) south side of Blackrock Rd., 1 mile from Rt. 118 This is a unique example of a 2 1/2 story central passage type log house with two chimneys. It is made of logs planed at Blackrock Mill but is presently covered with asbestos siding. The house was built by the owner of Blackrock Mill, Nicholas Offutt, at the northern border of his property to ensure a disputed property line. HPC#18/33. 
Blackrock Mill (1815) Blackrock Rd. Blackrock Road is one of the county's "Rustic Roads." Near its intersection with Germantown Rd. is Brownstown, a free-black community dating from before the Civil War. Blackrock Mill was built by Thomas Hilleary in 1815 and was both a grist mill and a saw mill. It has been restored by the county. Black Rock is a cliff overhang across Seneca Creek from the mill. There is evidence of pre-Woodland native American occupation of the now filled-in cave beneath the overhang. Both are owned by the state of Maryland. HPC#18/31. 
Bowman Brothers Houses* (1901) 19209 & 19219 Germantown Rd Charles, Eldridge and Upton Bowman built the Bowman Brothers Mill in Germantown in 1888. Clara Bowman, wife of Charles, bought this property in 1901 and both houses were built at that time. The Charles Bowman family lived in one house and the Upton Bowman family lived in the other. The two houses represent different styles, however, one being square and the other being "L" shaped. 19219 is HPC#19/13-6. 
Cider Barrel (1926) 20410 Frederick Rd. The Cider Barrel was built by Andrew Baker, a local insurance entrepreneur, to sell cider made from apples from his orchard.He advertised fresh, non-alcoholic cider during prohibition, but he operation continued after the Volstead Act was repealed in 1933 in this wonderful example of novelty architecture. HPC#19/33 
Clopper Mill (c1783) Clopper Rd. & Waring Station Rd. The first mention of a mill on this site was in 1777 when Nicholas Sybert sold it to Benjamin Spyker. Zachariah McCubbin owned the mill from 1783 to 1810. Francis Clopper, who bought the mill from McCubbin, added a third story to the mill in 1834. This grist mill used an undershot water-powered wheel. HPC#19/21 
Gassaway House* (1815,1840, 1869) 17200 Riffleford Rd. John Gassaway built the largest section of this house--on the north side--in the 1860s. He was a leader in the area in innovative farming techniques and had a seed and fertilizer store in Germantown. It is an example of an "H" shape Victorian style house. HPC#9/27 
Grusendorf Log House (c1840) and Clopper home site (c1800) Seneca Creek State Park Visitor Center Francis Cassatt Clopper moved here in 1812 and added to the existing house. His son-in-law, William Rich Hutton, a renowned engineer, inherited the house in 1868. The house and grounds were acquired by the state in 1963 and the house burned down about ten years later. The Grusendorf Log House was built by stonemason Frantz Grusendorf in the 1840s near the site of the original Germantown. It was moved to the park in 1994. HPC#19/19 
Hoyles Mill Road. Where this road fords Little Seneca Creek a mill had existed since before the Civil War. The Hoyle family was the last to operate the mill which closed in 1914. There are no remains of this mill. As you enter the road from Germantown the Leaman farm is on the right. Soloman Leaman was one of the first settlers in Germantown in the early 1800s. The farmhouse dates to about 1870. Halfway down the road on the right is the Hilton "castle," a brick house brought over from Europe in the 1940s. 
Neelsville Presbyterian Church (1878) 20701 Frederick Rd. A small log church facing Neelsville Church Road was built on land donated by Joseph and Mary Neel in 1843. The white church was built in 1878. HPC#19/5. 
Old Railroad Trestle Pilings Black Hill Park The Metropolitan Branch of the B & O Railroad had a tall wood and steel trestle here until it was replaced in the 1950s. It was used in several movies in the 1940s, one of which was Christmas Eve (also known as The Devil's Holiday). This railroad line was planned in the 1850s, but construction was halted by the Civil War. It was finally completed in 1973 and revolutionized transportation in Montgomery County. The construction of the railroad line included several engineering feats, including this trestle. 
Old Germantown original town site (1840s) Clopper Rd. & Germantown Rd. (Old) Germantown Road (Rt. 118) was built in the 1840s to connect the Neelsville and Darnestown Presbyterian Churches. Where the new road crossed the old Clopper Road some German immigrants established shops. The surrounding farmers, who came to the blacksmith shop, general store, etc., referred to it as "Germantown" because of the heavily accented people there. North of the intersection, to the east of Clopper Rd. is the cemetery of Trinity Methodist Church, formed in the 1860s. 
Wallich/Heimer House (1913) 19120 Mateny Hill Road This house was built by local carpenter John Wallich who lived there for more than 30 years with his family. The Glenn Heimer family lived in the house from 1959-1981. It is an example of vernacular Victorian style with interesting projecting bays and a combination of clapboard and shingle siding. HPC#19/13-7. 
Walton House* (1920s) 19205 Germantown Rd. This house was built in the 1920s but has been added to and changed over the years by its various owners so is not an example of any one style. Ray Walton, Jr. and his family lived in the house from 1960 and purchased it in 1961, selling it in 1997. The property was owned by members of the Bowman family from 1884 to 1912, but the original house burned. 
Waring/Crawford House* (1881) Forest Brook Dr. Probably, the original part of the house on the west side was built in the early 19th century and lived in by members of the Waring family. The larger victorian section was built in 1881 by George Crawford and is an excellent example of Victorian style architecture. The Waring farm reached from here to Clopper Road. HPC#19/11. 
Waring Viaduct (1906) HPC#19/10. This tree-arch span stone viaduct over Great Seneca Creek was completed in 1906, replacing a wooden trestle. It was considered a great engineering feat when it was constructed. A trail leads to the site from Seneca Creek State Park Visitors Center. 
Waters (Madeline) House site Wisteria Dr. & Germantown Rd. A plaque marks the site of this 1902 house built by Lloyd Dorsey whose half-sister, Madeline Waters lived there for her entire life. A picture of the house is on the plaque. HPC#19/13-1 
Waters (William) House site (1835) The foundations of the house built by one of the first settlers in Germantown is now part of a park behind the Waters House condominiums. Waters Mill ruins (1790s) Father Hurley Blvd. & Waters Landing Dr. When the three brothers, Zachariah, William and Basil Waters, moved to what is now Germantown one of the first things that they did was to build this grist mill, saw mill and flax seed oil mill. The ruins can be seen next to the path leading into Black Hill Park. 
Waters (Basil) House "Pleasant Fields" (1797) Royal Crown Dr. Basil Waters built the first part of the house which was sold after his death to his nephew, Dr. William Waters and enlarged by him and by his son, Charles Waters who had a standardbred stud farm here and bred the fastest trotter on the east coast, Kinster, in the 1890s. HPC#19/1. 
Woodbourne (Blunt House) (1805) 21000 Blunt Road The original 2-bay log house which was the first part of this house built is the central part. The property was acquired by Harry W. Dorsey and passed to his daughter Harriet in 1840. Harriet had married Samuel Blunt and their son, William Blunt inherited the property next. William was a County Commissioner in 1863, and a member of the Board of the County Agricultural Society. This fine example of a colonial style brick house remained in the Blunt family until 1977. An extraordinary quilt made by Harriet Dorsey and her sister-in-law Susan Maria Waters Dorsey is at the Montgomery County Historical Society and is the subject of a book. HPC#14/51.