Cromwell Valley Park
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Cromwell Valley Park

The 380-acre park was acquired by the Baltimore County Department of Recreation and Parks starting in 1993. It is a stream valley park comprised of pasture, cultivated gardens, open fields, woods, hedgerows, orchards and wooded piedmont hills. The diversity of this habitat makes it an excellent area for wildlife. There are many species of raptors such as the Red-tailed Hawk, American Kestrel, and Great Horned Owl, which prey on a healthy population of small mammals such as rabbits, deer mice, and meadow voles. White-tailed deer and red fox are also plentiful. Songbird populations include Baltimore Oriole, Bobolink, Eastern Meadowlark, Indigo Bunting, Eastern Bluebird, and many others. Belted Kingfishers and Great Blue Herons are often seen around the stream, Minebank Run.

The valley has been settled since the early 1700s and used primarily for farming. Some iron ore mining took place in the area with the largest of at least four mines located at the stream's starting point - hence the stream's name. Later, due to an easily quarried supply of Cockeysville marble, the valley became a production area for agricultural lime. Lime kilns were built, and used to heat the marble by firewood, eventually creating lime powder. The powder was then collected and bagged at the base of the furnace. The lime kilns in the valley operated until the 1920s and were owned by the Towson, Jenifer, and Shanklin families. The remnants of several of these are still visible in the park today.

The educational focus at Cromwell Valley Park is in three major areas - farming, history, and natural history. A portion of the park is a demonstration farm, illustrating sustainable and organic farming.

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Comments (1)
Great place to explore

2/25/2016

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"I enjoy coming here with my kids and exploring the old structures"