How poetic these names sound to our ears! Depending on your mother tongue, you will read the name of this charming town Heiver di Graice ( American) or Hâvr deux grass ( French). No matter your language, you will guess that Susquehanna and Cheasapeake are Indian names. In America, Indian , French, English, Dutch ,Norwegian, German names are to be found all over the place, depending on who were the first settlers. Havre de Grace was named after Le Havre , the large Normandy harbor in France, because Lafayette, the hero of the two world, came to the small town several times during his Revolutinnary war campaigns. He told the locals that the place reminded him of Le Havre , and so, a few.years later they named it “Havre de Grace”.
The Susquehanna river ( oyster river in Delaware Indian ) flows 450 miles from Upper state New York down to the Cheasapeake Bay. Like all rivers in the US, it was used by the settlers before roads existed, as a necessary means of transportation. It had its haydays in late18th/ early 19 Th century to ship the iron that made the fortune of Pennsylvania at the time. It is said that most of the rails used in the country for the conquest of the West were produced in Pennsylvania. When steel replaced iron and railroads replaced barges , the Susquehanna river lost its importance. Sadly , like most rivers in the country, the Susquehanna river is still heavily pollluted by excess animal manure from farming, agricultural runoff, urban and suburban storm water runoff, and raw treated sewage, yall this waste flowing into the Chesapeake bay. Beautiful names but sad realities. Still lots to do for the environment of such beautiful areas.