20 ioF Environment
Old man offers interesting stories
ldtrty poaon about Sandy Point
and bow rich the vegetatioa moat
have bee 100yeasago.
From our c neaversatio, I learned
many things about Sandy Point
envimmeat. The old man po-ied
out to me that Sandy Point pond
had two outs; One fram the soth
side of the pond and the other one
from where Federiksted Pool is
located today. So one ie in histo-
ry the salt pd of Sandy Point was
open, and water flowed back and
fat to these.
The old man said that as a boy,
he used to walk on a dirt road to
Sandy Point wheat he and friends
fished, gathered sea turtle em at
in, and rode on mbul bics.
On the wet aide of the pond, be
sKd, he and friends used to dig in
the sand for fresh water. I said,
what, i-tesh water" The old man
said he remembered thadt because
beae they nk er a iwded dinking
water with them wboa they fishated
Tm Itrecalaled that Sandy Pole
on the seoth ide of t pond ame
had n Indian village tha goe back
Today, you can still fld arti-
fcts below and above the face
of the saud. It in possible lediasa
sttled at Sandy PoM t t only for
its alndance of mine animal,
wildlife on land d vailble frs,
also for the fsh water below Ith
surface of the sand. Sandy Point
means "deep sad, the old man
Back the. he said, people took
sand to build houses and roads.
Before Her Oai Refiney was bullet
in the eary 1960, mca would stand
at Study Point's saitshor tip and
see white sand beaches for miles,
sall he way to the Knases lagoo,
where Hess and St. Croix Alu-
minum is located day.
his all changed, my old Hfia
said, because of the dredgig f the
Kanses Lag in the 60s. White
sandy beaches began to disappear
and the south shore of St. Croix
ecosystem changed forever. The
final blow to Sandy Point came
when people began dumping ath
the ad the d was dredged for
Many people back then and
some-today beieve that salt pods
asre jut smelly plae.Litl do they
know that salt ponds are an por-
tant breeding ground for marine
animals, birds and other wildlife.
Mat Ipat4, the uhing lduoy
Sine Virie lMends depends upon
Today, Sandy Pola is piolecteed
as a National Wildlife Rlefe par-
liay for the endaged spewes
lemebteack se toMe, but also fao
rame plants and olher wildlife that
inhabit the saleasy. Sieo we we
in me simmer seam ,he ad man
and I also talked abot ruilts. He
was quick to point out that Sandy
Point om had big sweat seamaps
and cooplums in a asbudnt.
I asted he old man if tee were
mespel tees growingin back yards.
In the 1920l, he srth side dof St.
Croin was considered the garden of
the fuit forest became of the rich
deep fertile so wbhsesome trees
grew mor than 0 feet.
In 1734, wthen te Danii setOtled
aon St. Croix, thy Lalo discovered
how rich the soil was on the north
of the island. t is the indication o
good, rich laid where topsoil is
blackest and deepest, whether Me
soils aem located on mountains o in
valleys. In those places, the oress
are thicker and the tres hlarp than
in other acas. TIe soil and its prod-
Unts give curious proof of this,
sometimes from a detrimeaal per-
spective. Many planters have com-
plained of th fertility of the rich
soil, eating that whatever we plant.
ed them grew so abundantly that it
could not allbe putto se, Reimert
Hlagensen said is the middle
historically, the not side of St.
oix was omcea dl tropical rain
saet. In places he eq Dam in
the rain forest, the old man said,
water used to ru Ike a river year-
road to the sea. He never thought
in his lifetime the Creque Dam
stream would go dey. In fact, he
mcaloned the Nty built the dam in
the 1920s within the stream bed for
the simple reason of the constant
flow of water downeam. Here, he
said, thec were mepel toee grow.
lg along th seam bamts.
The mepl trees have ecoan ic
and medicinal poleial. The treb is
need for teatig diaitets, furini
making, and the sicky while late
ad mip frat is ued al a source
for chewing gum. Fruits like
mespel, cocoplum and seagrapes
were part of the residents' dit, my
old eiad said.
Ofase Dais Wo hase a oater
ocfsdaencedegreerin ranme nage-
ea t and flreoy ecology; is a S
Creaixelgst acadvistmnd wier.