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Woodlawn Manor Cultural Park

Woodlawn Manor
16501 Norwood Road
Sandy Spring, MD 20860
General Information: 301-650-4373

Hours of Operation: The trail and grounds are open year-round, sunrise to sunset. Guided hikes of the Underground Railroad Experience Trail are held each Saturday at 10:00 am April through the first Saturday in November. Woodlawn Manor is a special event facility available daily for weddings, meetings, etc. For reservation information, please click here, email or call 301-774-1900.

This Federal-era Manor House in Sandy Spring, MD contains richly restored furnishings along with a quiet bucolic setting. The Woodlawn Manor has five uniquely designed rooms that are perfect for small meetings or intimate social affairs. The manor sits on several acres of land that include a unique stone barn, five original outbuildings and several champion trees.


Construction Project

Woodlawn Stone Barn Visitor Center

The Sandy Spring area has strong historical ties to Underground Railroad activity. The stone barn on the property is the future site for the Woodlawn Stone Barn Visitor Center. The Visitor Center will pay tribute to the Quakers and Underground Railroad experience in Montgomery County.

County Council Tour of Woodlawn Stone Barn Visitor Center. Opening June 2016Construction work was completed on the Stone Barn and Carriage House in November 2015. The new Visitor Center will open to the public in the spring 2016. For more information about all park development projects, visit or call 301-495-2595. Right: Video link - County Council pre-tour of the new visitor center

Ongoing Programs

New! School Fieldtrips & Group Tours

Coming January 2016, Parks is offering fieldtrip experiences for school children grades 3rd grade and up with hands-on activities that explore the world of Woodlawn's early residents during the mid-1800s. Groups can register online by clicking here for the Underground Railroad Experience Trail guided hikes. To schedule groups for the new education program, contact 301-650-4373.

Underground Railroad Experience Trail Guided & Self-Guided Hikes

Guided Hikes
The Underground Railroad Experience Trail at Woodlawn Manor Cultural Park commemorates the involvement of Montgomery County residents in the Underground Railroad and celebrates the Quaker heritage and traditions of Sandy Spring. Part of the National Park Service National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom Program, this fascinating outdoor hike will lead your group on a simulated Underground Railroad Experience that will showcase the techniques enslaved freedom seekers used and the hardships they faced on the road to freedom.
Guided hikes, provided by trained "conductors" last about 2.5 hours and are held each Saturday at 10:00 am April through the first Saturday in November. Please check the Parks events calendar for special programs and current hike updates.

Self-guided Hikes
Free self-guided hikes are also available along the Underground Railroad Experience Trail. For more information, visit Download the Trail Map here.


One of Montgomery County’s most admired historic properties, the Woodlawn Manor was constructed in the 1800s by either Richard Thomas or his son, Samuel Thomas, Jr. According to tradition, Samuel and his wife, Anna operated a Quaker boarding school at Woodlawn. Dr. William Palmer, the founder of the Montgomery Mutual Fire Insurance Company, purchased the estate in 1825.

The symmetrical front façade of the five-bay federal style house features Flemish bond brick and a fanlight transom over the central entrance. Palmer expanded the house with a kitchen wing. His son, Benjamin Palmer, added the northwest wing in 1881.

In 1832, master stonemason Isaac Holland built an exceptional three-story stone bank barn with four large round-arched openings on the basement level. The property also includes a combination diary and smokehouse of stone, a log house, and a board and batten tenant house.

Grounds includes significant mature trees, include an Osage Orange with an 11-foot trunk circumference, 100-foot high American Linden tree and a 1999 County Champion Norway Spruce.

Last update: January 20, 2016