The House of Delegates has an opportunity this week to support preservation of a valuable parcel of tidal marshland and also encourage archeological, educational and environmental activities. Passage of a bill declaring Black Marsh in Baltimore County a "Type 2 Wildland" would safeguard the fragile 150 acres against development. It would be a wise investment in Maryland's future -- and its past.
Six miles of the Black Marsh area, near Edgemere, lie near shoreline. The majority of the 1,310-acre tract is covered by woods, farmland and unmanaged fields. The farm area has been in continuous activity for nearly 350 years. Evidence of human occupation and use of Black Marsh dates back an astonishing 9,000 years. More recently, Black Marsh played a key role in the War of 1812, being the site of skirmishes between colonists and British troops attempting to invade Baltimore.
All of this is well worth preserving. Del. Connie Galiazzo's bill would ensure that the large bayside Black Marsh and a 517-acre buffer zone are protected against development (except for some observation decks). The bill would also change the name of the larger, surrounding parkland to North Point State Park to avoid confusion and to reflect the historic significance of the wooded area.