The Indian Head Rail Trail, Maryland

John Cowgill: Stories of the Railroad

You have rail trails, and you have the Indian Head Rail Trail. It was once a rail line that connected the Naval Base in the town of Indian Head in the U.S. state of Maryland. Today, it is a leisurely along what was once a major supply railroad.

The Indian Head-White Plains Railroad was built to supply a power facility at the Indian Head Naval Facility, and it was a big asset during World War I and World War II. It connected the base with a spur line that served much of Southern Maryland with the Pennsylvania Railroad in Bowie, Maryland. Considering the distance the train traveled to get to the main line, it took a little while for the railroad to transport the power to other areas. With the American highway system growing to include roadways like U.S. Route 301 crossing the Potomac River south of the base and…

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