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Sitting on the corner of East Main Street and Alley 5 in Thurmont is a green and white one-story building. Murals decorate its walls, depicting the history of the famous Hagerstown and Frederick Railway, that once ran trolleys between Thurmont and Frederick. Displayed beside it in matching green and white is one of only four known remaining H&F trolley cars. The trolley system began in 1896 in Frederick, and was progressively extended until it reached Thurmont in 1908. At its peak in 1920, the trolley was moving 3.8 million passengers a year along this route, as well as freight. But competition from road transport for both freight and passengers led to the decline of the line. Only a short segment of line in Thurmont was left standing, until the last trolley ran in 1954.
As a way to celebrate this incredible storied system, Town of Thurmont, together with volunteers have developed a trail occupying 0.7 miles of the former railbed, from the old electrical substation on East Main to the library on the south side of town. While short, the shared use pathway has been enthusiastically received by residents, and there are plans to construct an extension south to Cacotin Furnace. Ultimately, the hope is to build a trail occupying the entire 14 miles from Thurmont to Frederick – the railroad right-of-way is still intact since it currently accommodates the Potomac Edison electric utility line.
From Frederick, MD take State Route 15 (SR 15) North to SR 77, at the end of the ramp take a left and travel through the stop light. The trail head will be on your right at Memorial Park, across from the historic trolley car in Thurmont.
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