Preserve War of 1812 historic sites [Letter]

September 11, 2014

While Maryland is going to great lengths to commemorate the Fort McHenry battle from the War of 1812, little effort has gone into acknowledging several Savage residents: Commodore Joshua Barney in the Battle of Bladensburg or his son-in-law, Nathanial F. Williams, in the Battle of North Point. The Williams family developed what we know today as the Savage Mill, a cotton mill that allowed our ship industry to continue when the English ransomed our fledgling country's critical resource.

Today, both Savage Mill and the Commodore Barney House are under development pressure for "smart growth in-fill." Would you want a high-rise apartment to dominate the area adjacent to Fort McHenry? Would a zoning designation that has no enforcement criteria for comparability in a historic district be welcomed?

How can we respect our county government when it does not respect the historic achievements of its citizens? These brave citizen soldiers didn't defend our land and our freedom so that the community's overwhelming concerns could be ignored.

There may be no candidate that strongly supports the Savage area this fall, but we do have the freedom to vote. This freedom was fought for 200 years ago on our own homeland, by our own residents. We have a duty to support what they stood for then by voting now.

More than party affiliation, voters should consider a candidate's record of respect for the history of the communities they represent.

John Garber, Savage

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