Notes on the Potomac Granite Mill and New Foot Bridge Below Widewater

References in C&O Canal Companion:
Mile 11.75 (note to be added) and Mile 12.3

Photo from National Park Service files.

Added to the Updated edition for Mile 12.3:

This elegant wood and steel bridge with concrete abutments was one of the few pleasant consequences of the floods of 1996, replacing the old earthen dam that supported foot traffic down from the parking lots off of MacArthur Boulevard (opposite Angler?s Inn).


On weekends, you?ll see a flotilla of kayaks and canoes being carried across the bridge and down to the river. Experienced paddlers can either play in the rapids in the riverbend just upstream or take a mild whitewater excursion down to the the takeout at Lock 10 or below Sycamore Island (takeout onto the canal at the warning signs for the Little Falls Dam!).


To be added

Mile 11.75:

The Park Service's guide has a picture of the "Potomac Granite Mill," but does not place its location. According to Tom Hahn and Bill Davies, the Granite Mill was located at mile 11.75. (Hahn indicates that the Mill operation also had a loading dock and rock crusher at mile 12.36). According to NPS historian Karen Gray, this company apparently operated in the latter years of the canal, around the late 1800's and early 1900's.



  • Towpath Guide to the C&O Canal, Thomas F. Hahn, initially published in four parts, published in a combined edition by the American Canal and Transportation Center, April 1982, and subsequently reprinted numerous times. [Hahn also conducted at least one survey of canal landmarks for the National Park Service, a copy of which is kept in the Park headquarters in Sharpsburg.]
  • E:mail discussion with Karen Gray, referencing work of Bill Davies in addition to Tom Hahn.



| Home | C&O Canal | Historical Sketch | Falls Region | Piedmont and the Sugar Lands | Blue Ridge & Great Valley | The Endless Mountains |