Overnight at The Forgeman's House

Go back in time.

The Forgeman’s House has been beautifully and accurately restored by the Catoctin Furnace Historical Society, Inc. (CFHS). It was built during the winter of 1820-1821 to house workers at the Catoctin Furnace and is in the heart of the historic village. All revenue from overnight stays is used by the historical society to restore and maintain the historic structures in the village.

The Forgeman’s House is not a typical overnight destination. While it has a lovely modern bathroom with a shower, a gas fireplace, and the kitchen even boasts a dishwasher, as soon as you walk through the doorway and leave the modern amenities, you enter an 1820 home. The antique furniture and handmade reproductions are not overstuffed (or stuffed at all); and traditional roped beds (complete with modern mattresses!) will lull you to sleep…as you repeat the phrase “sleep tight and don’t let the bedbugs bite”. We will make sure your bed ropes are tight, but the experience of sleeping on a rope bed is one you and everyone in your group will remember.

Prior to restoration, archaeologists recovered more than 30,000 artifacts from beneath the floorboards of the structure. These everyday treasures tell the stories of families who lived here: children playing marbles, a cobbler mending shoes, a seamstress sewing the latest pleated and puffed sleeve, someone using the first strike-a-light matches (Weller matches from nearby Thurmont) to light the fire. A “below the floorboards” exhibit case allows you to see what archaeologists found during excavations.

A testament to the frugality of the residents was also found during above ground archaeology when more than 100 pieces of historic clothing were found stuffed into the eaves and soffit of the house. As the furnace harvested the trees off the mountain to make charcoal, the price of wood purchased from the furnace owners was more than the cost of rent. One oral history recorded in the 1970s recounts a memory of the (once) young boy waking up with snow on his quilt in the upstairs bedroom.

Games and toys in the house are reproductions of those played by children in earlier times. Their presence was found during the archaeological excavations. A huge, fenced back yard welcomes outdoor games.

The Forgeman’s House is a unique historic stay, and we welcome you to experience it. But do leave your 21st century ideas of comfort at home…and step back in time.  

2 historic ¾ size rope beds, 2 historic twin size rope beds located in 3 separate rooms. Full bathroom. Full kitchen. Small deck off kitchen. Sleeps a maximum of 6.

Reservations

For reservations, please call 240-288-7396 or send us a message.