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Oyster Wars and the Public Trust (Manuscript Draft)

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Type: Working Paper
Author: McCay, Bonnie J.
Date: 1996
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/5672
Sector: Fisheries
Water Resource & Irrigation
Region: North America
Subject(s): oysters
common pool resources
riparian rights
Abstract: "This book is about 'oyster wars' and other conflicts over property rights in 19th and 20th century New Jersey and about the resulting court cases and how they shaped local and American common law. It is also and necessarily, given the particulars of this history, about culture. North American culture includes the idea of the free and equal right to go fishing and to use waters and beaches for transportation and pleasure. Yes, we might have to pay for parking, buy a license, and follow regulations imposed by our governments' 'fish and game' agencies and the Coast Guard, but otherwise no one can keep us from the great rivers, bays, and oceans of our continent. It seems natural to claim these rights as human beings and as citizens."

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