August 1, 1864, American history was in the making right at the front door of what is now Puccini Restaurant. The Battle of Folck’s Mill, Maryland’s westernmost Civil War battle, was fought practically outside its doors.
After burning Chambersburg, PA on July 30, 1864, Confederate Generals John McCausland and Bradley T. Johnson ordered their troops to march toward Cumberland, MD. Their plans were to disrupt the B&O Railroad and demand a ransom from the town. They arrived at Folck’s Mill around three in the afternoon on August 1 where they were met by Union Brigadier General Benjamin F. Kelly and three divisions of untested “100-days” troops with six pieces of artillery. The battle was over within five hours and the Confederates were on the retreat towards West Virginia.
The battle was called Folck’s Mill after the John Folck’s family. Mr. Folck owned a grist mill, a saw mill and a cooper shop. Directly across from Folck’s Mill was the home a George Hinkle, a farmer. After the battle Hinkle’s home served as a temporary hospital for wounded soldiers, both Union and Confederate. It is now home to Puccini Restaurant.
The main building was built in 1818 and is on the National Register of Historic Places. The wounded soldier’s etchings can still be seen on the plaster of the third floor walls. Puccini patrons are able to read about the battle while dining in a building that served as the battlefield hospital.