Nestled on the Chesapeake Bay's western shore, the Town of North Beach epitomizes "land of pleasant living." Its seven-block waterfront contains a public fishing pier and a half-mile-long boardwalk with accompanying bike path. The boardwalk is dotted with benches for residents and visitors to linger and Bay-watch. Located at the northern tip of Calvert County, North Beach also encompasses a wildlife refuge in its tidal marshlands, home to native wildlife and host to seasonal migrations.
Platted in 1900, North Beach celebrated its Centennial at the turn of the millennium. Socially and culturally, the Town has a rich and diverse history. Originally settled primarily by part-time residents from nearby Washington and Baltimore, North Beach provided an ideal site for vacation cottages, as well as for those of the Chesapeake Bay's working watermen. When the Bay bridge opened in 1955 bringing easier access to the Atlantic Ocean's resorts, summer crowds on the western shore soon dissipated, and the end of legalized gambling brought an end as well to the heyday of North Beach as a rollicking resort.
Following a period of decline, recent years have produced a rebirth of civic pride and a burgeoning sense of community. Old buildings have been removed; houses refurbished and flower beds blossom everywhere. North Beach is home to the Bayside History Museum which opened its doors on October 30, 2004. Other developments in the Town include a senior citizens' apartment complex opened for occupancy in 2001 and a primary care medical facility opened in 2002. Visitors flock to North Beach for the many family-friendly special events. Local antique stores attract shoppers, while beachcombers delight in the search for fossil sharks' teeth. Mother Nature herself is the Town's greatest asset.
Today's population is composed primarily of year-round residents who know they've found "The Jewel of the Chesapeake Bay". It's a place to take a quiet, friendly walk around Town away from the congestion and hassle of the city, a place where government wears the face of one's neighbor and each resident can keep a finger on its pulse and a place to call your own little bit of heaven on earth.
Pictures used by permission of the Chesapeake Railway Museum.