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In Southern Maryland, about thirty miles south of Washington, D.C., the Potomac River forms a shallow bulge called Mallows Bay. It’s an incredibly scenic place full of wildlife such as water fowl, heron and bald eagle. The adjacent land is a county park with hiking trails, picnic areas and a launch for small boats and paddle craft. But the central attraction of Mallows Bay is its so called "ghost fleet" consisting of the rotting and rusting remains of nearly 230 ships.

The ghost fleet was part of an unprecedented shipbuilding program undertaken by the U.S. to assist its European allies during the First World War. When America entered the war, the allies had an acute shortage of vessels. Nearly half of all ships leaving for combat were getting sunk by German torpedoes. And not just military vessels; even merchant and passenger ships were targeted.

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Photo credit: Don Shomette

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© Amusing Planet, 2016.


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