View of Conococheague Aqueduct from Towpath

Conococheague Aqueduct

Photo by Tim Ware courtesy of the National Park Service

Historic Arched Aqueduct

Completed in 1835 to carry C&O Canal traffic over Conococheague Creek, the 210-foot Conococheague Aqueduct consists of three semicircular arch spans. It is the second largest aqueduct on the canal, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Located at Williamsport, an important crossroad near the middle of the canal, the aqueduct shows off more decorative features than its brethren, including engaged pilasters with ornate capitals and bull-nosed piers.  It was targeted for destruction three times during the Civil War, once by Union soldiers and twice by Confederate troops, each time as an effort to restrict transportation and maneuvers by opposing forces.  In April 1920, a canal boat broke through the upstream wall of the aqueduct, tumbling into the creek below. Repaired with a timber wall, the aqueduct functioned until the canal stopped operating four years later.

In 2019, the National Park Service completed an extensive restoration of the Conococheague Aqueduct, rebuilding its piers and providing a watered, three-quarter-mile section of the canal to allow for canal boat operations; rides on replica canal boats are available by calling the Williamsport Visitor Center.  Travelers can take in great views of the aqueduct from the nearby railroad lift bridge.

Visitor Information

Open dawn to dusk, year-round.  Parking is available on site adjacent to the Cushwa Warehouse and the Williamsport Visitor Center.