Skip to main content
Use the right side menu to identify relevant boxes and place requests.

Daniel S. Lynch papers

 Collection 0253-MDHC

Lynch was an environmental activist and vice president of the Coalition to Preserve Black Marsh. The papers relate to natural conservation campaigns, particularly Black Marsh and North Point State Park in Baltimore County, Maryland. Materials include correspondence, notebooks, news clippings, reports, newsletters, member lists, promotional materials, photographs and negatives, maps, posters, and a sketchbook.


  • 1981-1999
  • Majority of material found within 1990-1993

Use and Access to Collection

There are no restricted files in this collection.

Conditions Governing Use

Photocopies or digital surrogates may be provided in accordance with Special Collections and University Archives duplication policy.

Copyright resides with the creators of the documents or their heirs unless otherwise specified. It is the researcher's responsibility to secure permission to publish materials from the appropriate copyright holder.

Archival materials may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal and/or state right to privacy laws or other regulations. While we make a good faith effort to identify and remove such materials, some may be missed during our processing. If a researcher finds sensitive personal information in a collection, please bring it to the attention of the reading room staff.


2.50 Linear Feet

22 Items

Scope and Content of Collection

The Daniel S. Lynch papers document his activities as vice president of the Coalition to Preserve Black Marsh and as a participant in other Maryland environmental preservation campaigns. The collection covers the period from 1981 to 1999, with the bulk of the materials created from 1990 to 1993. Materials include correspondence, notebooks, news clippings, reports, newsletters, member lists, promotional materials, photographs and negatives, maps, posters, and a sketchbook.


Daniel S. Lynch was vice president of the Coalition to Preserve Black Marsh, Inc., (CPBM). In 1990, a group of concerned environmental activists formed this non-profit coalition in order to prevent development of North Point State Park (NPSP), part of the Gunpowder Falls State Park system in Baltimore County, Maryland. The other elected officers of CPBM were Richard C. Pollack, Sr., president; Vera D. Hinkelman, treasurer; and Cynthia Stitz, secretary. Polly Wirth served as president of the CPBM board of directors. By 1995, about 1,000 individual and fifty group members belonged to the coalition and supported its campaign to preserve and conserve Black Marsh.

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) proposed several alternative plans for developing NPSP. Features of the plans included a golf course; a visitor's center; dining facilities; roadways; piers; and renovation of the historic, twentieth-century Bay Shore Amusement Park. The Coalition argued that the implementation of these plans would threaten the balance of the Black Marsh, which is a part of NPSP and a designated State Wildland and Natural Heritage Area. The 232-acre Black Marsh rests along the Chesapeake Bay and hosts an ecosystem that includes endangered plants and animals, such as the bald eagle.

CPBM sought to raise a public outcry about DNR's plans and state congressional bills that allowed for development of parts of NPSP. On September 25, 1991, CPBM sent a lawyer to represent them at a hearing held by the Chesapeake Bay Critical Area Commission. The Commission decided in favor of DNR's draft plan for Black Marsh. On January 3, 1992, CPBM filed an appeal against the Commission's decision. Over a year later, the appeal was dismissed with prejudice (a final and binding decision that bars further prosecution of the same cause of action or motion). On October 4, 1993, the CPBM sued the Critical Area Commission for a writ of mandamus, which was dismissed on October 11, 1994.

After exhausting their formal options to challenge DNR's plans for NPSP, the CPBM changed its name to the Friends of North Point State Park. They continued to argue in favor of low-impact alternatives to elements of the DNR plan. At the invitation of DNR Secretary John Griffin, the group advised NPSP board members and officials through 1997.

As vice president of CPBM, Daniel S. Lynch contacted state officials, environmental scientists, and leaders of other non-profit environmental groups. He assisted other CPBM officers in organizing informational meetings for members and the public. The officers gathered information on the DNR's activities and plans, and they created alternative plans for the park that would have less impact on the marsh. CPBM members wrote reports, position papers, and letters to the editors of local newspapers about the importance of the marsh's ecosystem.

In a letter to the editor printed in the Baltimore Sun on March 13, 1991, Lynch articulated the aims of the Coalition. He explained, "In proposing the extension of natural-area protection to the 250-acre Shallow Creek peninsula, the coalition is looking toward the future. If the peninsula is allowed to fully restore itself through reforestation, the natural area of the park would become a nearly ¾-mile-wide band of forest and marsh protected by four miles of water boundaries." This improved protection, Lynch and CPBM members believed, would ensure opportunities at Black Marsh "for people to enjoy wildlife, unspoiled natural scenery, archaeological sites, and the rich historical background of the area."

Lynch's leadership role in the Black Marsh campaign was part of his larger involvement as a Maryland environmental activist. He participated in several other preservation struggles as a member and supporter. Lynch contributed his time and attention to efforts to save Chapman's Landing, Brookview Farm, Oregon Ridge, Cromwell Valley, and other natural areas of central Maryland.


The papers are organized as two series.

Series 1
North Point State Park Campaign
Series 2
Maryland Preservation Campaigns

Custodial History and Acquisition Information

In May 2002, Daniel S. Lynch donated his papers to the University of Maryland Libraries. He donated additional materials in October 2002 and February 2004.

Related Material

Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries holds a considerable number of collections related to Maryland's natural resources and their study and preservation. A departmental resource guide, "Maryland's Environment: Issues and Organizations," identifies and briefly describes relevant University of Maryland records groups, Historical Manuscripts collections, and University Publications. The guide is available in the Maryland Room of Hornbake Library and on the departmental website.

Departmental holdings include the Records of the Coalition to Preserve Black Marsh, which relate directly to the Papers of Daniel S. Lynch. Those records contain CPBM minutes and correspondence; records of the DNR's activities; copies of publicity campaigns; maps and photographs of the state park; a video of the panel hearing in 1991; and official and unofficial documentation of the CPBM's legal activity, including files kept by its attorneys. Information on Bay Shore Park, the amusement park that operated during the first half of the twentieth century on the current site of North Point State Park, is among the holdings of the University of Maryland Libraries' Marylandia Collection: Victoria Crenson's Bay Shore Park: The Death and Life of an Amusement Park (New York: W.H. Freeman, 1995; Maryland Stacks GV1853.3.M32 M84) and Kevin A. Mueller's Bay Shore Park: Fun on the Chesapeake ([s.l.]: Kevin A. Mueller, 2001; Maryland Stacks QH105.M3C74 1995).

Processing Information

The order of the files when received was not consistent or coherent. After the materials were surveyed, they were separated into two series. Records that document Lynch's involvement with CPBM, drafts, reports, handwritten notes, and correspondence comprise the first series. The second series includes the published materials and news clippings that Lynch collected as a member of other environmental preservation campaigns. Loose materials, arranged into groupings by subject and placed in folders, were assigned folder headings (enclosed in square brackets in the box inventory listing).

Staples and paperclips were removed and replaced with padded, non-reactive fasteners. Papers clipped together with larger clips were unfastened; sheets of acid-free paper inserted at the beginning and end of such groupings indicate the original condition. Binders were disbound, and their contents were placed in folders. Newspaper clippings were photocopied onto acid-free paper. Newspaper clipping originals and duplicate materials were discarded. The entire collection was housed in acid-free folders and acid-free, archival boxes. Oversize maps and posters were stored in a mapcase. Photographs and negatives, placed in non-reactive, polyester sleeves, were moved to the photograph area.

Guide to the Daniel S. Lynch Papers
Processed by Kevin Fries and Jill Reilly.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English

Library Details

Part of the Special Collections and University Archives

University of Maryland Libraries
Hornbake Library
4130 Campus Drive
College Park Maryland 20742