The narrow floodplain

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There was a fine view. On the narrow floodplain and river terraces of New Jersey, where I-80 would be, there were cultivated fields and split-rail fences, corn shocks in autumn, fresh furrows in spring. Anita and I came to the end of the Bloomsburg, or as far as it went in the outcrops of the gap. “These are coarse basal sands,” she said of one final layer. “They were deposited in channels and point bars through lateral accretion as the stream meandered.” In all, there were fifteen hundred feet of the formation, reporting the disintegration of high Silurian worlds. Ten or twelve years after the tum of the century, a Bergdoll touring car pulled into the porte cochere of Water Gap House and the chauffeur stepped out, leaving co-working space maastricht Theodore Roosevelt alone in the open back while a photograph arrested his inscrutable face, his light linen suit, his ten-gallon paunch and matching hat. This must have been a high moment for the resort community, but just as Teddy (1858-1919) was in his emeritus years, so, in a sense, was the Water Gap. A fickling clientele preferred Niagaras with falls. An intercity trolley had been added to the scene. Two miles downstream-in what had been George Inness’s favorite foreground-was a new railroad bridge that looked like a Roman aqueduct. Rails penetrated the gap on both sides of the river. There was a golf course-dramatic in its glacial variations on precipitous tills pushed by the ice up the side of the broken mountain-where Walter Hagen, in 1926, won the Eastern Open Championship. Soon thereafter, the tournament was played for the last time. Walter Hagen was not coming back, and neither was the nineteenth century. The perennial Philadelphians were now in Maine. In 1931, Kittatinny House burned up co-working space amsterdam like a signal fire. Freight trains wailed as they rumbled past the embers. In 1960 came the interstate-a hundred and sixty years after the first wagon road. As a unit of earth history, a hundred and sixty years could not be said to be exactly nothing-although, in the gradually accumulated red rock beside the river, ninety-four thousand such units were represented.

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