A historical marker has been missing since July 4 from its usual post near 1100 Frederick Road, in front of the Catonsville branch library, according to Erica Palmisano, a spokeswoman for the Baltimore County Public Library.
The sign, a marker for the original site of Castle Thunder, a home which belonged to Richard and Mary Carroll Caton, was “damaged” and picked up by the State Highway Administration for repairs, she said. Palmisano did not have any details as to how the sign was damaged. While the sign itself was damaged, the pole that the marker was attached to is still in place.
The State Highway Administration currently has the marker in its sign shop in Hanover, according to spokeswoman Shanteé Felix.
She, like Palmisano, said it was unclear how the sign was damaged. Felix estimated the sign will cost $350 to weld and repair. Repairs of this type typically take between eight and 12 weeks, and SHA sees two or three historical markers sustain vehicle damage each year.
Though the Maryland Historical Society’s name is on the marker, a spokeswoman said the organization did not maintain responsibility for it or other markers in the state.
“Our name was on there, probably because we were a source of information for the production of the sign many years ago,” spokeswoman Jennifer Michael said.
Castle Thunder belonged to Charles Carroll, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, according to Anne Luco, president of the Catonsville Historical Society. Carroll gave the home and its land to his daughter, who married Richard Caton.
The Catons were among the founding families of “Caton Ville,” a town that started developing in the late 18th century and which became known as Catonsville in the early 1800s, Luco said.
Luco was unable to provide specific dates because the Catonsville Historical Society’s records, which are kept in a paper format, are “all in boxes,” she said; the society is undergoing mold remediation from recent flooding.
The home stood in Catonsville, near where the library is now located, from 1787 until 1907. The sign was erected by the Maryland Historical Society in 1966.
The Castle Thunder marker post is adjacent to a new marker recognizing The Catonsville Nine, a group of Vietnam war protesters who burned draft cards in 1968.
The Catonsville Nine marker was placed in May 2018, recognizing the 50th anniversary of the protest. The sign was placed in front of the Catonsville library because the Knights of Columbus banquet hall, where the protest took place, declined to let their property be used.