Image: Maryland Department of Natural Resources via Atlas Obscura

In a secluded river bay on the east coast of the United States, the remnants of dozens of wooden ships jut haphazardly above the waterline. Stark and broken, the ships comprise a “ghost fleet” long ago abandoned to the elements. Within the still gloom cloaking the scene, there is a pervading sense of ruin, of mysteries unsolved.

Image: hthrd

Here and there, wooden posts protrude like the limbs of drowning and desperate men. Some of the ships are capsized. Others are half-sunk in the mire. Their hulls are rotted. Their sides are split. Time and nature have torn the vessels asunder. And on a cold, dark winter’s day, the grey-black skies seem to mirror the deathly waters.

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