Cushwa Basin, Williamsport, Maryland

John Cowgill: Stories of the Railroad


Williamsport is a town in the western part of the U.S. state of Maryland that is situated on the Potomac River.  George Washington once considered it to be the nation’s capital, but he decided against it due to the fact that large ships were unable to reach the town.  The Chesapeake and Ohio Canal was later built allowing ship traffic to reach the town from Georgetown allowing goods to be brought from ports south of Washington D.C.  Cushwa Basin was built as a part of the canal to be a place where the barges could turn around.  Today, Cushwa Basin remains as a reminder of what Williamsport once was.  Water remains in the canal between Cushwa Basin and Lock 44 to remind people of life on the canal.  Weather permitting, seasonal boat rides can be taken between the Visitor Center (housed in an old warehouse) and Lock 44.   (Construction is…

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