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Features: Past is Prologue

Slowly but surely, sea-level rise lays claim to Osborn Cove

After the 1907–08 survey of the lower Patuxent concluded in cold December weather, (See "Past is Prologue," November 2012) the mapping of St. Leonard Creek and Osborn Cove went to sleep again, while technology advanced another couple of decades.

By 1920, the U.S. government was surveying and photographing coast shoreline from airplanes — only 16 years after Wilbur and Orville Wright's first flight in December 1903.

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Extent of Bay's pre-colonial underwater meadows is murky

I've looked at Capt. John Smith's original map of Chesapeake Bay a hundred times, searching for clues to what the Bay was like in 1608. I can imagine him, with the armful of notebooks he must have kept, bending over the work in progress with...

Dive into the history of submarines in the Chesapeake Bay

My yawl, Nimble, was bound down the Chesapeake Bay, returning from a September cruise in 1997. I was-unwisely-beginning to rely too much on my global positioning system to keep track of my position, course and progress. Homeward bound to the...

Fisherman Tommy Courtney's Potomac: affection, frustration

It was cold but sunny when we turned onto Wynne Road and drove through wind-whipped fields to where the mouth of Jutland Creek faces Maryland's Potomac River. The faded sign reading "Courtney's" was barely visible. One would have to know this...


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About Past is Prologue

Longtime Bay scientist and ecological historian Kent Mountford offers a historical insight to the Chesapeake’s past, and present.

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