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Sea claims graves on a sinking island
Gravestones are laid out in front of an abandoned structure on the north end of Tangier Island, Va., on April 3. The island and portions of the Virginia coast along Chesapeake Bay are especially vulnerable to climate change; 35 million years ago, a meteor slammed into the lower bay and land mass continues to seep into its crater. Glaciers that gouged out the 200-mile-long bay about 10,000-15,000 years ago are also causing land to sink.Steve Helber / AP
By Steve Szkotak, The Associated Press
TANGIER ISLAND, Va. -- One day after Hurricane Sandy lashed this speck of land in the Chesapeake Bay last fall, islander Carol Moore hopped in her skiff and headed to a stretch of beach along The Uppards, one of the islands that comprise this remote outpost. A favorite haunt, Moore collects sea glass, pottery and arrowheads that she finds among the bleached oyster shells that blanket the beach.
What she found there that day shocked her.
Waves stirred by Sandy's fierce winds had pounded the beach and scattered in the surf human remains from a graveyard of a former settlement called Canaan, an ancestral home of Moore's mother's family. Continue reading.