The above site is located at the intersection of Marginal Way and Cove Street in Portland's East Bayside neighborhood. The ephemeral pond that appears during the year's highest tides has been dubbed Knudsen Pond after Marie C. Knudsen who is pictured with her flock of ducks there in a photograph taken circa 1900.
The original photograph is in the collection of Maine State Historian Earle G. Shettleworth Jr., and a reproduction of the image was displayed in the USM Art Gallery's Back Cove: Heart of Portland exhibition curated by Carolyn Eyler in 2001. Mrs. Knudsen lived on Hammond Street just up the hill from what is now the location for Portland U-Haul Moving and Storage. Back Cove, which seen in the background of the historical photograph, was in much closer proximity to Marginal Way than it is today.
Human intervention, including the construction of I 295, has significantly changed the shape of the peninsula and in turn the cove over the past 100 years. When tides are high, cove water forces its way back up through storm drains in a seeming attempt to reclaim its edge. A large culvert, pictured in a pop-out window above, is located on the other side of the Interstate and appears to be one of the major passageways for tidal waters that flow and inundate Marginal Way. The contemporary photograph taken in the fall of 2010 illustrates the impact of the tidal waters on an area close to where Marie C. Knudsen and her ducks stood.
Hand-Painted Map: MollyMaps
Photo Rights: Permission to use the historical image of Marie C. Knudsen was granted for this website.
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