Last week Preservation Leadership Forum hosted a webinar about national marine sanctuaries. Jeff Gray, the superintendent of the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary on Lake Huron in Michigan, and Sammy Orlando, the Chesapeake Bay regional coordinator for the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries—both of which are a part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)—discussed garnering support for the national marine sanctuaries at Thunder Bay and Mallows Bay, a resource on the Potomac River in Maryland, and one of the National Trust for Historic Preservation's National Treasures, that is in the process of being designated.
The webinar provided specific examples of how to leverage management structure, programming, and outreach to make the local community your greatest partner and advocate. While national marine sanctuaries are a very specific designation, the work that Gray and Orlando are doing to develop community support in Michigan and Maryland provides great examples of community outreach and engagement to support important historic resources. Watch the webinar recording here.
There were a few questions that the presenters could not get to during the webinar:
Is there an update on the status of the Mallows Bay designation?
NOAA is working with the state of Maryland to finalize the designation, which we anticipate in 2019.
What are some maritime and cultural features of Mallows Bay?
We are still learning about the people, communities, and assets associated with this area. In fact, the effort to characterize and interpret the maritime cultural landscape of the area is an important priority for the proposed sanctuary. Historical records indicate assets related to the Revolutionary and Civil war periods, two state-recognized Indian tribes in Maryland and one in Virginia, the long history of the Department of Defense, the traditions of commercial watermen, and generations of local community members along the Potomac River. NOAA and its partners look forward to working alongside these and other communities to understand and interpret these histories.
How can we help protect Mallows Bay?
Let your elected officials at both the federal and state levels know that this designation is important to you, and encourage them to support it. Learn more at the NOAA, the National Trust, or Maryland Public TV as well as by reading “Tidal Wave: The Greatest Ship Launch in History."
Supplemental Video Resources