—The Shoreline of Annapolis —
City Dock in Annapolis
In the 1700s, the shore of Annapolis followed approximately along the line of buildings that now front Dock Street, Market Space, and part of Compromise Street—everything closer to the water is built upon fill. Through the next three centuries, natural silting and then deliberate filling and bulkheading around the edge of City Dock reduced the waterway to the narrow inlet you see today. The additional land allowed for construction of buildings and businesses that served of benefitted from the working waterfront.
A city Market House has stood near City Dock since 1784—the current one was built just before Civil War and was first restored in the early 1970s. Veterans' Memorial Circle at the foot of Main Street was once a Victorian park. Parking spaces and Susan Campbell Park now occupy an area between Dock Street and City Dock that once held oyster packing houses and four large oil tanks.
Most of the working-class community called Hell Point (originally Hill's Point), visible in the bottom left of the 1939 photo, was bought in 1941 by the Navy, which razed the houses and commercial buildings. The Naval Academy's Halsey Field House, recognizable by its blue-green copper roof in the modern photo, was built on the cleared site in 1957. Numerous
land reclamation projects going back to the 1850s have added acreage to the Academy's grounds and significantly changed its shoreline.
View of City Dock
City Dock Today