Hope fading for much-needed Battle Acre upgrades
Wednesday, 25 July 2012 12:00

The fence at Battle Acre needs repair, but Harry Young doesn’t think the upgrades will be made in time for the War of 1812 celebration.
photo by Ben Boehl

Repairs needed, but not likely, at War of 1812 site

by Ben Boehl

    Even though the War of 1812 Bicentennial celebration is under way, a local groups fears that Battle Acre won’t be receiving a much-needed facelift.
    The historic site, located off North Point Road in Charlesmont, is where American forces met British troops and helped win the Battle of Baltimore.         Harry Young, member of the Dundalk-Patapsco Neck Historical Society and chairman of the group’s Defenders Day celebration, said the site has been in decline as the fencing and markers have been damaged.
    “We were going to take down the fence and move the pillars back 12 feet to make it more of a presentable site for tourists,” Young said. “It would also help pedestrians along the road as there would be more room to walk.”
    Battle Acre is owned by Baltimore County and Young and his group needed to get permission to make improvements on the site. Young is hoping that the upgrades might lead to the creation of battlefield tours at the site, but says he has been unable to get the county to oblige.
    Young said he has talked to county officials about upgrades to the site, but has been told that the necessary funds are not available. Young has been able to raise $5,000 from other sources, but obstacles remain.
    “They questioned if we had enough volunteers. Then we had to provide liability coverage, which we did,” Young explained.    
    “Then we had to work with the county’s landmarks commission for permission to remove the front fence. After all of this, we sent a letter to the county executive so the contractors could begin [to upgrade the Battle Acre site], but we haven’t heard anything. It’s obvious, with no contact from the county, we are dropping any hope of doing anything with Battle Acre.”
    Baltimore County spokesperson Ellen Kobler responded that a decision has not been made about the Battle Acre upgrades as the county still plans to meet with Young and other community members  soon to discuss the project.
    “The county is very supportive of community efforts. We are still seeking state funding opportunities,” Kobler said.