• A kayaker paddles on the Patuxent River at the Jug Bay Natural Area. Photo by Middleton Evans.

    Captain John Smith Chesapeake

    National Historic Trail VA,MD,DE,DC,PA,NY

Follow in the Wake of Captain John Smith's Chesapeake Bay Journeys

Four hundred years ago Englishman John Smith and a small crew of adventurers set out in an open boat to explore the Chesapeake Bay. Between 1607 and 1609 Smith and his crew mapped nearly 3,000 miles of the Bay and rivers and documented American Indian communities. Smith’s map and journals are a remarkable record of the 17th-century Chesapeake. Come join the adventure on the Chesapeake Bay!

Did You Know?

A barb from a cownose ray

Captain John Smith was stung by a ray at Stingray Point during his journey on the summer of 1608. He was stabbing them with a short sword to catch them and it was likely a cownose ray that jabbed him back. Smith suffered extreme pain, but the ray suffered worse – it ended up as his evening meal.