Philadelphia in Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Muddy Island in the Marsh
When the first Europeans sailed up the Delaware River in the late 1500s, Mud Island was one of several low-lying islands in a huge marsh near where two large rivers met – the Schuykill and the Delaware.
In those days the marsh was full of wildlife. The native people, the Lenape (len ah’ pay), had been foraging, fishing and hunting this abundant wetland for centuries.
In fall and winter, millions of wild ducks and geese spread across the marsh in giant flocks. In the spring, shad, sturgeon and striped bass swam up-river in crowded schools to spawn. Oysters and freshwater mussels grew in thick layers on the muddy bottom. Muskrats made their homes among the cattails. Herons and egrets nested in solitude and safety.
Riches Among the Reeds
European traders saw economic opportunity in the vast marsh and hired Lenape hunters to bring them furs of beaver, otter, mink and muskrat for export to Europe. Hunters and settlers exploited the wildlife so intensely that even before William Penn arrived in 1682, the beaver were almost gone from the region.
Location. 39° 52.497′ N, 75° 12.721′ W. Marker is in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in Philadelphia County. Marker can be reached from W Fort Mifflin Road, on the right when traveling Click for map. Marker is located on the east side of Fort Mifflin. Marker is in this post office area: Philadelphia PA 19153, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Expert Fishers of Fort Mifflin (a few steps from this marker); What Makes Wetlands? (a few steps from this marker); Native Plants of Fort Mifflin (within shouting distance of this marker); Main Gate / Flag (within shouting distance of this marker); Artillery (within shouting distance of this marker); Casemates or Bombproofs (within shouting distance of this marker); Arsenal (within shouting distance of this marker); Torpedo Casemate (within shouting distance of this marker). Click for a list of all markers in Philadelphia.
Also see . . . The Fort that saved America. The Official Website of Fort Mifflin on the Delaware. (Submitted on November 11, 2013, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
Categories. • Colonial Era • Native Americans • Settlements & Settlers •
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 249 times since then and 13 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.