The Maryland Line

"...We loved Maryland. We were proud of her history, of her traditions. We felt that she was in bondage against her will, and we burned with desire to have part in liberating her. She had not seceded. There was no star in the Confederate battle flag to represent Maryland. But we believed, in spite of the division of sentiment in the State, that if she had been free to speak, her voice would have been for the South. At the very inception of the struggle, her Legislature had been invaded by the military arm, and a number of its members had been thrown into prison, but the last act of that Legislature, before it was deprived of its liberty, was to pass a resolution declaring coercion an unconstitutional act, subversive of freedom, and expressing its sympathy with the South and its desire for the recognition of the Southern Confederacy..."

Randolph Harrison McKim, 1842-1920
1st Maryland Confederate Battalion - The Maryland Line

The Maryland Line


Who are we?

The Maryland Line is comprised of individuals interested in the history of the American Civil War. This interest extends, but is not limited, to accurate portrayals of military and civilian personnel (“re-enacting”), participation in period social events and study and discussion of the period 1861-1865. Membership includes both combatants as well as civilian reenactors. Maryland Line personnel will at all times strive to foster and encourage a family-oriented environment within the constraints of an accurate period impression.

The Maryland Line is an education nonprofit organization which works to educate the general public and its own members about the American Civil War, by interpreting and presenting information about the civil war period of American history, about the battles and events of the American Civil War, and about the daily life of soldiers and their families and civilian associates, through living history presentations, public battler reenactments, educational presentations made through historically accurate first person characterizations , and lectures.

No discrimination. The Maryland Line will not discriminate against any person on the basis of race, nationality, place of origin, ethnic background, religion, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, economic class, age, mental or physical handicap or disability. The Maryland Line may align a role with the role which that member (given that member’s race, gender, etc) would occupy in 19th century America. However, no article, by-law, policy, or unit regulation shall be enacted that would prohibit outright the membership or participation in the Maryland Line on the basis of race, gender, religion , age, creed or handicap.

In keeping with the purpose and on-going active role of The Maryland Line as a 19th Century military unit with a refugee camp, it is understood that all members, in active roles will at all times when "in persona" demonstrate a high degree of willingness to follow the orders and directions of those of higher rank, including members of other units and Brigade staff.

What was the Maryland Line?

The Maryland Line was the name used by the Maryland Continental Troops in the American Revolution. The Maryland troops were often referred to as the “Old Line” by General Washington and he regarded them as some of his finest soldiers. They valiantly on many battlefields, especially at Long Island, Camden, The Cowpens and Guilford Courthouse. During the Civil War, many of the Maryland Confederates were the descendents of these heroic freedom fighters. One of these men was the Maryland Confederate officer Bradley T. Johnson who lobbied to unite all the Maryland Men under one banner. This was finally authorized on June 22nd, 1863 by Secretary of War James A. Sedden:

Confederate States of America, War Department

Adjutant and Inspector-General's Office
Richmond, Virginia, June 22, 1863

Colonel Bradley T. Johnson :

Sir: You are authorized to recruit from Marylanders and muster into service companies, battalions and regiments of Infantry, cavalry and artillery, to serve for the war, and to be attached to and form part of the Maryland Line.

By Command of James A. Sedden, Secretary of War.
Samuel W. Melton, Major and A. A. G.

Units that composed the Maryland Line

2nd Maryland Infantry (1st Maryland Battalion)
1st Maryland Cavalry Battalion
2nd Maryland Cavalry (Gilmor preferred to act as a Partisan and resisted joing the Maryland Line)
1st Maryland Artillery (Dement’s Battery)
2nd Maryland Artillery (Baltimore Light Artillery)
3rd Maryland Artillery never joined and served along the Mississippi River
4th Maryland Artillery (Chesapeake Battery)

Maryland Confederate soldiers were noted for their “natty attire,” they generally wore Kepi’s (even late in the war), were always well drilled and fought hard. Bradley Johnson and his small band of men were praised by Wade Hampton for his work in harrassing Kilpatrick and Dahlgren in their Richmond raid. After his command was destroyed at Moorefield in 1864, Early’s cavalry units were consolidated and Johnson lost his command. He finished out the war in North Carolina as commandant of the prison in Salisbury, North Carolina.




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