Funkstown, Maryland

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Funkstown is a town in Washington County, Maryland, United States. The population was 983 at the 2000 census.



Originally 88 acres (360,000 m2) were sold to Henry Funk by Frederick Calvert in 1754 and settled as Jerusalem.[1][2] Funck’s Jerusalem Town

The plan for a village named “Jerusalem,” bounded on three sides by the Antietam Creek, was unveiled by Jacob Funck in 1767. The town boasted 177 lots, each being 82 feet 6 inches wide and 231 feet in length with one exception, lot #43 which by necessity was smaller. Shortly afterwards, lots were for sale and the town soon had fifteen log houses. Early residents referred to it as ‘Funck’s Jerusalem Town’ which became part of Washington County in 1776. Work on a comfortable stone house of the proprietor of Jerusalem Town was completed in 1769. Jacob Funck, his wife Ann, and their family of four girls and two boys moved into their new residence on lot #165, now designated as 35 West Baltimore Street. Since its very beginning, Funkstown was known for its mills. Their first mill was built in 1762. It was flourmill operated by Henry Funck. By 1785 Jerusalem was home for an iron furnace, brickyard, powder factory, grist and woolen mills and a host of inns and shops. The last mill built in 1859 was a flourmill which burned in September of 1929. It was run by the Antietam Mill Company. Jacob Funck was a Washington County Representative to the Maryland House of Delegates, 1785-1787. He divested himself of all land holdings in Washington County in 1791. That year, he and his family moved to Jefferson County, Kentucky where they lived until his death at the age of 67 in 1794. Dr. Christian Borestler settled in Jerusalem around 1784. He brought with him 70 German families that settled in the community. Needless to say, German was the predominant language spoken. Catawba, Delaware, Cherokee and Powhatan Indians lived in and traveled through this area hunting, fishing and farming. Antietam Creek is named after these Native Americans. Funck’s Town – Funkstown The first post office was established in Funck’s Town on December 24, 1816. In 1823 the Old National Pike was built through Funck’s Town and the first of two stone arch bridges was constructed over the Antietam Creek. The first was built in 1823 by James Lloyd to allow traffic on the Old National Pike to pass over the creek on its way toward the Allegheny Mountains The Town was incorporated as “Funkstown” in 1840.

The Civil War Battle of Funkstown took place July 10, 1863, during the Gettysburg Campaign as Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia retreated toward Virginia in the week following the Battle of Gettysburg. Union forces of the Army of the Potomac attacked the rear guard of the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia during its retreat from Pennsylvania following the Battle of Gettysburg. A strong Confederate presence at Funkstown threatened any Union advance against Gen. Robert E. Lee’s position near Williamsport and the Potomac River as he retreated to Virginia after the Battle of Gettysburg. Maj. Gen. J.E.B. Stuart’s cavalry, posted at Funkstown, posed a serious risk to the Federal right and rear if the Union army lunged west from Boonsboro. Stuart, meanwhile, determined to wage a spirited defense to ensure Lee time to complete fortifications protecting his army and his avenue of retreat. As Brig. Gen. John Buford’s Federal cavalry division cautiously approached Funkstown via the National Road on Friday morning July 10, 1863, it encountered Stuart’s crescent-shaped, three-mile-long battle line. It was Stuart’s first defensive battle since reentering Maryland. The high ground constituted Stuart’s extreme right, held by Preston Chew’s horse artillery. A nearby stone barn and barnyard wall proved a superb defensive position for the 34th Virginia Battalion’s dismounted cavalry. Col. Thomas C. Devin’s dismounted Union cavalry brigade attacked about 8:00 a.m. By mid-afternoon, with Buford’s cavalrymen running low on ammunition and gaining little ground, Col. Lewis A. Grant’s First Vermont Brigade of infantry arrived and jabbed at the Confederate center less than one mile away. Unbeknownst to the Vermonters, Gen. George T. Anderson’s Confederate brigade now faced them, the first time opposing infantry had clashed since the Battle of Gettysburg. By early evening, the Union Army began withdrawing south towards Beaver Creek. Stuart had kept the Federals at bay for yet another day. The day-long battle east of the road resulted in 479 casualties. The Chaney house served as a hospital. At the Keller home, Confederate Major Henry D. McDaniel, later the governor of Georgia, survived his wounds. Joseph Stonebreaker, a resident of Funkstown and witness of the event wrote: “The wounded were brought into town and Mrs. Chaney’s large dwelling was taken for a hospital. The Surgeons had a table in the yard under some trees and amputated arms and legs like sawing limbs from a tree. It was a terrible sight.” Soldiers from both sides were treated by residents of the town. Funkstown continued to grow in the twentieth century. However with the coming of railroads, the once bustling community of inns and mills became a quiet residential town. In 1919 J.C. Weisner began efforts to create a memorial for World War I casualties. In 1921, the Funkstown Memorial was erected at the main square. The western Maryland Community still reflects the charm and beauty that attracted the early German settlers. Many of the original historic houses and buildings are still in use as private homes, public buildings, quaint shops and businesses.

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