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      02-19-2011, 11:15 AM   #22
Rick F.
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Drives: 2013 BMW 335i cabriolet
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Catonsville, MD

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Originally Posted by aweltman View Post
Nice to see that visitors from outside the very immediate area have "discovered" Camp Michaux. I live barely a mile up the road from this site, which has been... a farm for the iron industry at Pine Grove Furnace, mid or late 18th century to 1919; a Civilian Conservation Corps work camp in the 1930s; and a church camp until the early 1970s. And, don't tell anyone, it was a top-secret interrogation camp for the U.S. Army during WW2.

The Lee Schaeffer website you mention is a good source of information, as is a book from the Cumberland County Historical Society: The Secret War at Home by John Paul Bland (2006).

I built the unofficial wooden bridge over the creek, which is so skinny because I had to carry it in over my shoulder (about 8 or 10 years ago). I check it regularly and can assure you it's still solid -- I went across it on X-country skis just a week ago. You surely could have walked over it! This Spring I plan to double it by "sistering" a duplicate next to it, so it will be a more comforting 36 inches wide. Come back and try it again when it's wider, and the weather warmer than it is now.

If anyone is going to be in the area and wants to try to set up an informal tour, shoot me a note. My email is below.

--Andre Weltman

Thanks so much for the additional information. On the day I was there, I probably went right by your house while looking for the giant ant hills that used to be near Ridge Road. (I didn't find any.)

I suspected that your bridge was still sturdy, but I just had this mental image of it giving away exactly in the middle, dumping me into the spillway! I'll look forward to crossing it properly on my next visit.

Thanks, too, for your contact information. I'd love to join one of the formal or informal tours.

Rick F.

PS: I've finally corrected several mistakes I made in my original post about the camp, with information from Vince Montano, an amateur historian for the camp. It's great to see that local history remains alive, even as the physician signs of it gradually disappear.