The 136 mile trail goes through all three historic counties in West Virginia’s Eastern Panhandle with 45 designated sites and hundreds of other aspects showcasing geology, natural wonders and nearly three centuries of recorded history. Centerpiece of the trail are five 18th century towns still the center of life today. One of those towns is Berkeley Springs.
In Morgan County, the 54 miles of trail follow George Washington’s footsteps through the area. Washington’s mentor, Thomas Lord Fairfax, once owned millions of acres in the region. Washington surveyed for Fairfax beginning in 1748 when he was 16 years old and first visited “ye fam’d warm springs.” He returned often with family and friends encouraging industry and eventually owning land both in the town and along the Potomac. Washington’s first elected position was to represent this area in the Virginia House of Burgesses. As a young officer, he defended the region in the French and Indian War. His final link to Morgan County was at his death in 1799 when two major pieces of property here were listed in his will.
Washington-related sites along the trail include everything from his bathtub in Berkeley Springs State Park to a mountaintop trail where he loved to ride.
The Museum has Washington artifacts in several of its exhibits.