The Metropolitan Line of the B&O Railroad


On the 25th of May, 1873, the first train traveled on newly built railroad tracks through Montgomery County.  The Metropolitan Line of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad was a project many years in the making, as residents, businessmen and farmers worked to bring the railroad and its advantages to their county.


The coming of the railroad changed Montgomery County’s economy, landscape and demographics.  Our agricultural products could now reach new markets, and goods from far away could be shipped directly to county stores.  Towns that lay along the tracks thrived; towns that the railroad bypassed faded.  Developers built new communities at station stops, hoping to lure Washington, D.C. residents to the now easily accessible county. 


When first built, the Metropolitan Line had 28 stops along its 48 mile course.  Seven commuter trains a day (with extra “excursion trains” on the weekends) traveled the line.  Over the years, stops were added and taken away as the needs of the county changed.  Today the Brunswick line of the MARC train, which uses the old Metropolitan Line, runs nine trains eastbound in the morning and nine westbound in the evening, with stops in Montgomery County at Silver Spring, Kensington, Garrett Park, Rockville, Washington Grove, Gaithersburg, Metropolitan Grove, Germantown, Boyds, Barnesville and Dickerson.