The Importance of the
Intracoastal Water Way:
The Cape Fear region
3rd block Carroll
December 12, 2012
North Carolina’s Intracoastal Waterway, one of the state’s major sources of revenue, and serves many different purposes for its surrounding communities, from commercial shipping, commercial fishing and recreational fishing, clamming, harvesting oysters, and shrimping. The Intracoastal is of a vital importance to the Cape Fear region. It not only serves as a place where locals can go swimming and fishing, but also as a place where businessmen can transport goods to businesses all around the globe.
The Intracoastal has been utilized ever since early pioneers began exploring the New World. First time uses of the Intracoastal Waterway have brought us to what and where we are today in our society. Early usage of the waterway and the Cape Fear River include, but do not limit to transportation across the river via ferry, hauling goods up the river, and food and water supply for everyday living for nearby civilians. Indians have been known to live in the Cape Fear region dating back to the early seventeen-hundreds. There were five known Indian tribes in the area at the time, but little is known about them. We only know that one of the tribe’s names were the Necoes. They lived about twenty miles from the mouth of the Cape Fear River and the Intracoastal Waterway.(William S. Powell) As time went on, numerous people, such as explorers and settlers, came to the New World by merchant vessel to the Cape Fear to find a new place to start their families and grow their business. However, Intracoastal Waterway has not always existed. The Intracoastal Waterway was not officially “built” until the late nineteen forties.(Brendle) The Intracoastal Waterway is broken up into sections from north to south. The first motion to start constructing Intracoastal Waterway began in 1808 by the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, whom at the time was Albert Gallatin. In 1875, Congress authorized another survey from the Dismal Swamp Canal to the Cape Fear River.(United States Army Corp of Engineers ) The Army Corps of Engineers help maintain the Intracoastal from Maine to Florida. The Wilmington district helped defend our nation through enhancing our military and economic capabilities. The Army Core often teams up and plan out ideas with other organizations to try to make nautical living easier and more beneficial for its users. The Wilmington district was established back in 1884 in a permanent office to help provide the Cape Fear with a more responsive support to the leading waterway of trades.(United States Army Corp of Engineers ) The Board of Engineers decided that it would be more beneficial to have a free waterway, with a ten to twelve foot deep channel that would make it better for commerce and other military personal, cost wise, then to dredge out the river into a sixteen foot deep channel. In Philadelphia, a group of people came together to plan on the building of Intracoastal Waterway;this group of people formed the Atlantic Deeper Waterways Association. The association decided to construct an inland waterway from Boston to Key West. In 1927, Congress authorized a twelve foot channel through Federal Point peninsula to the Cape Fear River, and the Corps completed this segment in five years. By the 1930’s , as time went on, the mid-forties came along and by then the Intracoastal Waterway had a multitude of names for various projects within. After the Intracoastal’s projects were accomplished, the association went away for the most part.(Chesapeake Area Professional Captains association)The Cape Fear’s section of Intracoastal Waterway goes from the Cape Fear River to Southport, about sixteen miles from Wilmington, making it twelve feet deep and a hundred feet wide. January 21, 1927, the Rivers and Harbors Act authorized the twelve foot project of dredging the Intracoastal in...
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