Mallows Bay ghost fleet explored at Phillips Wharf Feb. 8


Photo Attribution: F Delventhal from Outside Washington, D.C., US [CC BY (].

(TILGHMAN ISLAND, MD – January 31, 2020) Phillips Wharf Environmental Center on Tilghman Island, Md. is inviting the public to its Sat., Feb. 8 Sip & Socialize Speaker Series for a talk on Mallows Bay, Beyond the Ghost Fleet.

Each Sip & Socialize speaker event begins at 5 p.m. in Phillips Wharf classroom, with wine, refreshments, and light snacks served. Following the speaker presentation will be time for discussion.

Mallows Bay—known as a ship graveyard—is located along the Potomac River in Charles County, Md. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration recently designated an 18-square mile stretch of the area as the Potomac River National Marine Sanctuary.

Mallows Bay is most renowned for its “Ghost Fleet,” the partially submerged remains of more than 100 wooden steamships that were built in response to threats from World War I-era German U-boats that were sinking ships in the Atlantic.

Susan B. M. Langley, PhD will present the history of the largest fleet of wooden shipwrecks in the world. Langley will also speak on Mallow Bay's most prominent vessels and its recent designation as a National Marine Sanctuary. The history of Maryland's other maritime heritage resources, and the integral role the fleet now plays in the environment will also be explored.

Dr. Langley has been the Maryland State Underwater Archaeologist for more than 25 years directing the Maryland Maritime Archaeology Program within the Department of Planning’s Maryland Historical Trust. She is an adjunct professor at several colleges and universities, where she teaches underwater archaeology and the anthropology of piracy.

Phillips Wharf Environmental Center's Sip & Socialize Winter Speaker Series is free, with donations gratefully accepted.

Phillips Wharf Environmental Center's Sip & Socialize Winter Speaker Series features volunteers, experts, and Chesapeake Bay industry professionals on topics pertinent to the Chesapeake Bay, wildlife and environmental changes, with more in the series posted at



Phillips Wharf on Tilghman Island, Md. is hosting a talk on the ghost fleet of Mallows Bay on Sat. Feb. 8 beginning at 5 p.m. Maryland State Underwater Archaeologist Susan B. M. Langley, PhD will lead the discussion about the ship graveyard beyond its recent designation as a National Marine Sanctuary. Photo Attribution: F Delventhal from Outside Washington, D.C., US [CC BY (].

Dear Phillips Wharf Environmental Center Supporter,

I want to share with you how Phillips Wharf Environmental Center is pivoting towards new horizons that strengthen our longevity into the future and make our educational programs much more accessible to diverse audiences.

In Phillips Wharf’s 14-year history – two challenges have remained constant—the rising costs of maintaining a waterfront campus and old buildings, and addressing the inaccessibility of Tilghman Island to many school systems and others unable to afford the cost or the time for the long trip from more urban areas like Easton.

With this in mind, Phillips Wharf’s Board of Directors have made a bold decision to ensure the sustainability of our future and educational programs by liquidating our assets on Tilghman Island—including the real estate and property—and re-focus the expected gains from the sale to re-open a location in Easton that the Board will determine.

Be assured—Phillips Wharf will always bring our students to meaningful interactions with the Chesapeake Bay’s ecosystem and inhabitants. We know technology and our FishMobile, for example, can bring experiences and education to more students when we can focus our operations more on education, and less on maintaining an underutilized campus with mounting deferred maintenance costs and more.

Phillips Wharf will continue to carry the essence of encouraging, educating, and engaging Chesapeake Bay stewards from a new location soon. In addition, we’ll be sure to share this exciting news when it comes to fruition with you.

In the meantime, thank you for caring about our students and the Chesapeake Bay as a natural resource and source of healthy seafood and productive jobs for the Shore’s residents. We are excited to bring the Chesapeake Bay closer to our students and the public in ways that are more meaningful. This is a bold step forward not only in Phillips Wharf’s survivability, but also in our thrivability.

Please reach out to me with any questions or concerns you may have. You can reach me at [email protected] or 410-886-9200.

Warmest regards,


Matthew Albers

Board President, Phillips Wharf Environmental Center