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Down to the River: 1940

Circa 1940. "Beach with sunbathers." Chapel Point, Washington's "playground on the Potomac" near La Plata, Md. Photo by Theodor Horydczak. View full size.

Circa 1940. "Beach with sunbathers." Chapel Point, Washington's "playground on the Potomac" near La Plata, Md. Photo by Theodor Horydczak. View full size.


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Chapel Point photo

I lived on Chapel Point road until 1961 and in the late 50's the park was still open for swimming, picnic grounds and roller skating. I use to ride the school bus to the park, roller skate all afternoon and catch a ride back home later. spent many hours there during my last years of high school. They even had local bands from D.C. playing there on the weekends.

Chapel Point question

I'm the admin of a Facebook group dedicated to Charles County, Maryland history. I've always loved Horydczak's pictures, too. The Library of Congress has a large collection of pictures that he took in our area at one time; anyhow, the general consensus of the group is that this is NOT from Chapel Point. Can you tell me anything about the source of this picture?

[The Library of Congress Horydczak Collection. - tterrace]

No Sea Nettles

Washington Post, July 14, 1939.

Chapel Point Park

A quiet, refined amusement center, where you will find large picnic grounds, fine swimming, safe for children: diving float. No Sea Nettles. Dancing every Wednesday and Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon. Fine crabbing and fishing. Other amusements. New restaurant serving excellent food.

Unusually well-designed to handle large parties because of large recreational grounds. Regulation Soft-Ball Diamond. For further details, write Chapel Point Park, Bel Alton, Md., or phone Mr. Haddox, ATlandic 9202 or La Plata 103-F-2.

Chapel Point

When I was a boy going to a Catholic School in St. Mary's County, we used to take trips in the bus to Chapel Point to go Roller Skating at the roller rink there. The slide in this picture was gone by then, about 1952, but the rink and the bath houses were still there. Some rental canoes and a fine picnic area. A few years after that a tornado came through and took down the Roller Rink. After that the amusements were done for , and it was closed down.

Now the DNR has a state Park there, but there isn't much to it unless you want to go fishing. A historic Church sits on the top of the hill, St. Ignatius, there is a tunnel that runs from the old church underground to the waters edge, said to be used by escaped slaves. It isn't open for viewing however.

Men's Tank Tops

I am guessing that all the GI's who would take any opportunity they could to swim and bathe in just their shorts are responsible for the demise of the tank tops all of these men were wearing in 1940.

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