Mallows Bay is home to the largest and most diverse collection of sunken ships in the United States. The area has been recommended to be designated a National Marine Sanctuary—a recommendation that PTRC wholeheartedly supports.
Mallows Bay, a small indent in the Potomac River which is accessible from Nanjemoy, contains the graves of more than 200 ships dating from the Revolutionary War to the present and includes the remains of 90 World War I wooden steamships, which were deliberately sunk in the Bay.
If approved, Mallows Bay would be the first Marine Sanctuary on the Potomac River and the first in the Chesapeake Bay. In addition to the sunken ships, Mallows Bay is home to numerous Native American, Potomac River fishing industry, and Civil War archaeological sites. It is a unique marine and terrestrial ecosystem that offers tremendous opportunities to educate the public about our nation’s maritime history and to promote conservation, research, recreational fishing and boating, and tourism.
Mallows Bay is a Charles County park with excellent facilities, including picnic areas, a hiking trail, a good sized pervious parking lot that can handle vehicles pulling trailers, a boat dock, and a kayak launch that is very easy to use. In other words—it’s a great place to visit.
Photo courtesy of Paula Schiller, Southern Maryland Waterscape
Don Shomette’s Speaks of History of Mallows Bay
Noted marine archaeologist Don Shomette spoke at PTRC’s October 2, 2014, public meeting on the historical importance of Mallows Bay and why it should be made a National Marine Sanctuary.