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Eagle Archives: New Windsor history includes hogs, white elephants and health-giving waters

New Windsor has taken its turn recently to be in the news. Throughout history, New Windsor was unofficially known as a retirement village for Carroll County farmers, and enjoyed a reputation for being run prudently and efficiently by the leadership of the community.

According to research by the Historical Society of Carroll County, Isaac Richardson Atlee "began selling lots in the newly formed town of New Windsor," around this time in 1797.

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Atlee, according to historians Jay Graybeal and Joe Getty, first recorded "The Plan of New Windsor" in the Frederick County Land Records of Feb. 22, 1797 and the plan was "examined and delivered" March 11.

Graybeal's research uncovered a description of the founding of New Windsor by Frank J. Devilbiss in an 1895 Carroll Record newspaper series.

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For many years, the heart of the community was what we know today as the Dielman Inn, which, sadly, is on the list of endangered historic properties. (See story, page 5.)

According to the 1895 Devilbiss account, "In about the year 1788 after the close of the Revolutionary War … Atlee, visited this section. He noted considerable travel on both the Monocacy and Buffalo roads, which crossed here, and, being of a business turn of mind, concluded that a tavern at this juncture would be a profitable investment.

"He built up a lucrative business and in the meantime, settlers hearing of a sulphur spring, now on the Maynard estate, and of its high medicinal qualities, came from far and near, purchased lots, erected houses and spent money.

"The place then became known far and wide as 'Sulphur Springs,' and afterwards as 'The Springs.' Throngs of people visited the place simply to partake of its health-giving water…"

Although a municipal election is not scheduled until next year, in the spring of 1897, the town was galvanized over a dispute concerning hogs — and that also needed to be settled by a town election.

According to a local newspaper account, there were two "tickets ... in the field, one favoring and the other opposing the removal of hog pens from the corporate limits. A full vote was cast and the (pro-hog) ticket won, so that hog pens will not be disturbed in New Windsor for a year to come."

In the winter of 1923, an electric plant was the hot topic. The local paper exclaimed, "When the burgess and alderman of New Windsor purchased some time ago the town's electric light plant, they not only paid one dollar in good coin for the property, but they acquired a 'white elephant.'

"Complaints about the plant's service and rates have continued under municipal ownership and recently a petition signed by 63 customers of the plant, was presented to the Public Service Commission."

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When he is not worrying about chasing hogs and white elephants out of town, Kevin Dayhoff may be reached at kevindayhoff@gmail.com


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