City of Chesapeake
Chesapeake's history dates back much further than 1963 when the City of Chesapeake was incorporated. In 1775, Chesapeake played an integral role in the historic Battle of Great Bridge, where the Americans forced Lord Dunmore's troops to flee and later abandon the city of Norfolk. In 1763, George Washington visited the great swamp where Chesapeake is located and envisioned the Dismal Swamp Canal in an effort to improve commerce between states and connect the Chesapeake Bay and Albemarle Sound. This waterway is the oldest operating artificial waterway in the country. It played a strategic role in the Civil War as part of the Underground Railroad, and today, recreational boaters pass through the canal and the Intercoastal Waterway. Paddle the Dismal Swamp and spot hundred year old Bald Cypress trees. These unique trees grow up from the brackish water with needle-like leaves and distinctive "knees" that rise up from the soil or water around it.