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Rock Creek (Monocacy River)

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Title: Rock Creek (Monocacy River)  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Stevens Run (Rock Creek), Marsh Creek (Monocacy River), List of rivers of Maryland, Potomac River, Stevens Creek
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Rock Creek (Monocacy River)

Rock Creek
The confluence of Rock and Marsh Creek is north of the Pennsylvania/Maryland border[31] by 12.7 arcseconds[1] (c. 1907 map).
Country United States
State Pennsylvania
Region Adams County
Townships West: Cumberland, East: Mount Joy & Straban
 - from East coordinates shown right-justified
 - from West coordinates shown left-justified
Highest point mainstream perennial flow
 - location near Rentzel Road
 - coordinates  [2]
Source Susquehanna drainage divide
Mouth Monocacy River
Basin 65 sq mi (168 km2) [3]

c. 1840 January[4]
1870 [32]..]
1886 February 12[6]
1889 [33]
1913 March [34]
1923 August 30 [35]
1933 August
1972 June (Hurricane Agnes)
1996 June [36]
2011 September 8[8]

USGS feature ID 1185250 [9]
Namesakes Civil War: Rock Creek Rangers
On July 2, 1863, "Wiedrich's battery [of] six rifled cannon also exchanged fire with one of Jones's batteries on the opposite side of Rock Creek",[37] and snipers from a home on the East side fired on positions on the West side of the creek (on July 3, Confederates retreated across Rock Creek.)[38]
Website: Rock Creek Watershed (map)

Rock Creek is an 18.9-mile-long (30.4 km)[2] tributary of the Monocacy River in south-central Pennsylvania and serves as the border between Cumberland and Mount Joy townships. Rock Creek was used by the Underground Railroad (at McAllister's Mill, "slaves would slosh through the water to throw off the tracking dogs that were pursuing them")[10] and flows near several Gettysburg Battlefield sites, including Culp's Hill, the Benner Hill artillery location, and Barlow Knoll.

Rock Creek intersections, north-to-south
Intersection Location/Description Coordinates
Sources On drainage divide with Conewago Creek
Northernmost watershed point:

Summit near Oak Hill Rd:

Summit on Stone Jug Rd:

Summit on Harrisburg Rd:

Leedy Rd
Shriver's Corner Rd
Keller Rd
Branch Crosses US 15 at milepost 13.2 north of Hunterstown Rd bridge
Branch Extends beyond Shriver's Corner Road (at Goldenville Rd) to just beyond Rentzel Rd:
Boyd's Schoolhouse Rd Cumberland/Straban township border
Survey line Borough line
"Site 59" on creek in Cumberland and Straban townships "intended for flood control".[39]
Blocher's Run[11] Flow from Marsh Creek (west) & Conewago Creek (north) triple pt on Oak Ridge:}

US 15 Bus.
Harrisburg Road site of former 1846 covered bridge built by Joseph Clapsaddle[4] near Barlow Knoll
Run drainage from the east
Run Drainage along former site of Alm's house[12] from Gettysburg College's Quarry Lake & Oak Ridge triple point (with Willoughby/Pitzer Runs)
Stevens Creek[13]
Island Depicted on 1916 Gettysburg National Military Park map[14]
Run (Depicted on battlefield map at right)
Railroad Early's Confederates burned the trestle on June 27, 1863 [40](rebuilt days later & in 1912)[41]
US 30 1807 3-arch [42] stone bridge of 60 ft (18 m),[15] 1853 covered bridge,[4] 1919 Lincoln Highway bridge,[43] replacement [44]
PA 116 Site of former 1853 90-foot covered bridge built by John Finly[4] and 1932 concrete bridge.[45][46]
Survey line Borough line
Winebrenner Run[11] [47][48]
Rock Creek Ravine Location noted in several battle records
Jones Bridge Run?[11] Flows north of Culp's Hill to confluence just upstream of island
Survey line 1893 Warren survey line for Gettysburg Battlefield crossed creek [49]
Benner Run Flows southeast of Benner's Hill artillery location ("Ladys Run" in 1886)[50]
Ford between Spangler Spring and farm (Z. Tawney during the battle)[12]
Spangler Spring Run[11] Drainage southward from Stevens Knoll
Guinn Run[51][11]
Former site of McAllister's Mill dam (destroyed by 1870 flood)[52]..]
Run (Depicted on battlefield map at right)
Ford 1889 road downstream of McAllister's Mill[53]
Baltimore Pike 1802 turnpike bridge[16] (north of PA 97 terminus)
Run Flows under Baltimore Pike
US 15 Near site of Battle of Gettysburg field hospital at George Bushman Farm:
White Run Drainage from Lake Heritage, Pennsylvania
Run Drainage from Weikert Hill and Round Top, Pennsylvania
Wright Avenue Run[11] from Big Round Top[12]
Sachs Road 1891 bridge[17]
Little's Run "Two Taverns Run" in 1901 [54] when bridge was built at Little's Tavern[18]
headpoint near White Hall:[2]
Soloman Road 1895 steel Burr arch bridge[55] "Lott's Bridge"[56] at "Lott's fording"[19] & 1977[20] ("Lott's Bridge") near Pine Bank Cemetery
Rock Creek Ford Former ford just upstream of bend in creek with overhanging cliff[7]
Distributary Former headpoint of millrace
Dam ruins Former 1798 Black's/Horner's Mill dam to provide head for millrace (rebuilt 1937)[7]:150
Plum Run Named "Rock" Run in 1821[18]
PA 134 Taneytown Rd at Barlow: 1841 covered bridge, c. 1872 replacement,[5] 1923 & 1989 concrete bridges
Run Flow from southwest of Big Round Top
Cromer's Ford Former ford for Chapel Road route south to Taneytown Rd[7] (horse team, wagon, & driver swept away in 1875)[21]
Run Upstream of site of former ford at Benner Rd
Run Near former intersection of Taneytown Rd & Basehoar-Roth Rd, and upstream of former Swetland Rd ford
Mason-Dixon Rd ("Rock Creek Rd") site of 192-foot, single-span 1890 Burr arch bridge (east span collapsed January 5, 1946)[57][22]
Lousy Run Near The Links
Mouth Confluence with Marsh Creek ("The Points")[23] [1]


  • Stevens Run[28] (Stevens Creek,[29] Tiber) is a 2.2-mile-long (3.5 km)[2] stream which is a tributary of Rock Creek flowing over the Gettysburg Battlefield and through the borough of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Within the borough the stream is in a concrete channel, including a covered portion. From 1884 to 1942, the run was spanned by three bridges of the Round Top Branch railroad.[12] Samuel Gettys' Tavern was located on the south side on the uphill slope of the now-named Stevens Run, and Rock Creek Church was approximately on the north bank of the now-named Carlisle Street and Stevens Run.[30] In 1902, a new bridge was built over the Tiber on Chambersburg Street.[59]
  • Winebrenner Run is a stream in Gettysburg, flowing eastward to Rock Creek originally from a Gettys-Black Divide triple point (with Stevens Run & Guinn Run) near Zeigler's Grove. The Confederate military line along the stream was the starting point for the battle of East Cemetery Hill on the second day of the Battle of Gettysburg, and most of the upstream portion of the run was engineered c. 1961 into underground drainage to open flow at the school complex near the Culp Farm at East Confederate Avenue.[60]
  • White Run is a stream which flows along East Cavalry Field and is an eponym of the Rock Creek-White Run hospital complex. The run's mouth is at Rock Creek near the Trostle Farm along the Sachs Road, site of a hospital east of Round Top, Pennsylvania.[31]

See also


  1. ^ a b   at confluence point (Rock Creek west bank and Marsh Creek north bank) at water level & at base of 8 foot embankment)
  2. ^ a b c d e U.S. Geological Survey. National Hydrography Dataset high-resolution flowline data. The National Map, accessed August 15, 2011
  3. ^ Watershed Alliance of Adams County. Gettysburg, PA. "Watershed Profile: Rock Creek Watershed." Accessed 2010-08-21.
  4. ^ a b c d "Local History: The Wooden Bridges Built by Adams County" ( 
  5. ^ a b "Will Ask For Two County Bridges" (Google News Archive). Gettysburg Times (Times and News Publishing Company). April 4, 1923. Retrieved 2011-04-28. The present structure at Barlow is a girder bridge of two fifty-five foot spans. It was built more than 70 years ago, according to the Commissioners. At one time 52 years ago, the structure was washed away from its moorings and carried on a much-swollen Rock Creek for a distance of half a mile. It was brought back; a few additions were made and only slight repairs have been made since that time. The bridge now has a roadway 16 feet wide. This is to be increased to 20 feet and all abutments and piles are to be reinforced with concrete 
  6. ^ "Dam Broken" (Google News Archive). Gettysburg Compiler. February 16, 1886. p. 3 (col 2). Retrieved 2011-04-26. We hear that Horner's Dam, on Rock creek, five miles south of Gettysburg, was broken on Friday night,[February 12] and about 165 feet of the breast carried away. The new county bridge (occupying the place of one destroyed by a similar flood a few years ago) escaped without damage except a slight break in the pier supporting the centre. Mr. Henry Schriver lost 150 panels of post and rail fence along the creek by the heavy ice floating against it, and some of the roads were blocked. 
  7. ^ a b c d Geiselman (  construction
  8. ^ "Flooding causes evacuations". September 9, 2011. Retrieved 2011-09-11. a water rescue was made around 6 a.m. at a Taneytown Road residence [  (the rescue was from a northbound car stranded in the water over the roadway on the Mount Joy Township side of the creek.)
  9. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Rock Creek (1185250)
  10. ^ Nasby, Dolly (2005). Gettysburg (Google Books). Arcadia Publishing.  
  11. ^ a b c d e f g Perles; et al. (September 2006). Vegetation Classification and Mapping at Gettysburg National Military Park and Eisenhower National Historic Site (PDF) (Report). Northeast Region,  
  12. ^ a b c d Map of the Battle Field of Gettysburg (Map). New York: Julius Bien & Co. Lith. 1904. 
  13. ^  
  14. ^ tbd (Map).  
  15. ^ "Local History: The Wooden Bridges Built by Adams County, Chapter III". Adams County Historical Society "Bridges" file: Gettysburg Compiler. March 15, 1872. 
  16. ^ "Commissioners Office". Adams County Historical Society "Bridges" file: Adams Sentinel. November 15, 1802. 
  17. ^ "Court Proceedings" (Google News Archive). New Oxford Item. August 21, 1891. Retrieved 2011-09-11. The report of viewers to view bridge site over Rock creek at the place where the public highway leading from the Gettysburg and Taneytown road to the Baltimore pike, crosses said creek on the line of the townships of Cumberland and Mountjoy, was confirmed   (column 4)
  18. ^ a b Map of York & Adams Counties (Map). Cartography by D. Small. W. Wagner. 1821. Retrieved 2011-05-28. 
  19. ^ "To Bridge Builders" (Google News Archive). Gettysburg Compiler. April 30, 1895. Retrieved 2011-09-11. 
  20. ^ "County Plans New Rock Creek Bridge" (Google News Archive).  
  21. ^ "Out Of The Past: 150 ears [sic] ago" (Google News Archive). Gettysburg Times. December 22, 1975. Retrieved 2011-09-11. 
  22. ^ "Half Of Longest Bridge In County Collapses As Ice Breaks Pole Props". Gettysburg Compiler. January 5, 1946. The breakup of ice on the creek had carried away 10 telephone pole props the highway department had used to bolster the 96 foot section. ... Twenty or more years ago...a concrete pier was built in the middle of the span 
  23. ^ Stewart, Jon (August 17, 2008). "Straddling the Mason-Dixon line" ( webpage).  
  24. ^ Harry Wilcox Pfanz (2001-07-01). Gettysburg--the first day.  
  25. ^ Andrew B. Suhrer (2008). The Flying Dutchmen.  
  26. ^ Janet Hewett (1995). Supplement to the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies: Reports (v. 1-12, serial 1-12).  
  27. ^ Charles Teague (2001). "Barlow's Knoll Revisited".  
  28. ^ "Stevens Run (1188630)".  
  29. ^ Balch, William Ralston; Butler, John M. (1885). The Battle of Gettysburg: An Historical Account (Google Books).  
  30. ^ "[Alexander Dobbin article]".  
  31. ^ "Public Sale of Real Estate" (Google News Archives). Gettysburg Compiler. June 27, 1899. Retrieved 2011-04-26. 
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