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Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Newark, Delaware Panorama

(click image for bigger)

This view is north, east, and south from the Newark Reservoir. It was the first panorama I ever shot, on August 4, 2008. Having arrived at the top of the hill, I said, "Wow, what a view!" and decided to take some shots with the idea of trying to make a panorama. It came out surprisingly well.

On the left is part of the reservoir. The path around it is exactly one mile in length. The reservoir has only been around for a few years. It takes advantage of the fact that Newark is located right where the hills flatten out, giving a height advantage like a water tower. The location used to be a farm. I remember seeing feed corn and a dozen or so cows on it.

I used to take walks on the road below, called Old Paper Mill Road. All the way at the east end of the road is the nicest neighborhood in Newark, tucked away on a dead-end where nobody knows it's there. If you ever visit Newark, check it out.

As the hill drops off, you can see a house screened in by spruces. Behind it you can see some of the auto dealerships on Cleveland Avenue, of which there are several. The large brick building at the back is called Newark Apartments, if I remember correctly. It's on Main Street.

Further right, in the foreground is an old brick building which used to house National Vulcanized Fiber, or NVF. Vulcanized fiber was used for electrical insulation back in the 20th century. The building now contains an office park.

To its right you can see apartment buildings which are where the NVF reservoir used to be. It had its own swimming-pool-sized reservoir, fed by White Clay Creek, which flows through the row of trees in the foreground.

In the background is Iron Hill, which is, so I've been told, the largest lodestone deposit in America. The other large hill to its right is Red Hill. In the foreground is an electrical substation and a couple of small buildings which were also part of the NVF plant.

The hill the reservoir sits on is shaped like a boot, with the reservoir itself at the ankle. The toe is visible in the foreground here. On the other side of the toe hiding in the trees is a chimney, part of the Curtis Paper Mill. It used to have a sign that said "Oldest continuously operating paper mill in America". The mill was torn down recently; all that remains is the chimney.

Lastly, on the far right you can see Christiana Towers, which belong to the University of Delaware and are used for housing. Somehow, I've managed to not mention the Diversity of Underwear until now. It's not fair to say the U of D is Newark, but it is omnipresent and unavoidable. Still, I've always liked Newark best in the summer, when the students go away.

The panorama doesn't include Newark's most famous landmark, the Deer Park Tavern. Supposedly, Edgar Allan Poe was thrown out once for excessive drunkenness. It sounds plausible, but there's no evidence to back the claim that Poe was ever there. Still, the Deer Park uses a raven as its mascot, an interesting counterpart to the University's blue hen.

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  • The Mother Tongue, by Bill Bryson

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